Sick chook

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by djg20, Dec 23, 2014.

  1. djg20

    djg20 Hatching

    Dec 22, 2014
    Melbourne, Australia
    Hi guys,

    First time poster, long time reader!

    I am having an issue with one of my chickens and she has seemingly become quite ill over the last couple of days. She hasn't laid an egg for 3-4 weeks and over the last 24-48 hours she has deteriorated. She is more lethargic than she has been, tending to stay in a corner of her coop rather than explore her run with the other 2. I have examined her and the only noticeable alteration to her appearance (that I can find anyway), is her comb is a palish pink rather than the bright red of the others.

    Seem to be eating layer pellets and kitchen scraps normally, I regularly add garlic to their drinking water (which is fresh and plentiful), droppings are unchanged from when we first got them 3 months ago (which is presumably normal also), no visible signs of parasite infestation (and dusted them yesterday as a precaution), will worm the flock tonight/tomorrow morning although no signs of an infestation in the droppings either. It really does have me baffled.

    I live in Melbourne, Australia, and while the temperature has been warm, it hasn't been ridiculously hot. They have access to shade at all times during the day as well. She is moving around a little bit as I type this, but the last few hours she has set up shop in her little corner.

    Hopefully I'm missing something very minute that need to be altered to ensure that she keeps on kicking.

    This is a photo of the hen in question. Weight seems to be normal, vent is clear, as I mentioned earlier no visible signs of parasites, eating ok but not foraging as lively as she has previously.


    As a comparison, here is a photo of one of her "sisters" with a bright comb and not so tired looking.


    Hopefully she comes good over the next couple of days. Any advice out there as to anything that I may be missing?

    Last edited: Dec 23, 2014
  2. myfinefeatheredfriends

    myfinefeatheredfriends Songster

    Mar 1, 2011
    Was she vaccinated for Marek's Disease? The way she is puffed up with her eyes shut like she's in pain looks just like a Leghorn hen I had one time that died from Marek's Disease. Other symptoms include: unmoving due to leg paralysis, not eating or drinking, labored breathing and being overall lethargic. Unfortunately if she was not vaccinated, it is already too late to get the vaccine into her. It only works for day old chicks. It also usually takes the lives of young birds, however birds of any age can be infected. The Leghorn I had passed away a week before her third birthday. Hopefully this isn't what it is but it is a possibility you may want to look into. Good luck... I hope it all works out for the best!
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Djg20. Go ahead and worm her as you planned. Another possibility is that she may be egg impacted, not much you can do about that if that's what it is.
  4. djg20

    djg20 Hatching

    Dec 22, 2014
    Melbourne, Australia
    Thanks guys. I have wormed the flock this morning. Comb is still pale, however more movement today (and later on yesterday afternoon). Is there anything i should be looking out for if she is egg impacted?

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