Sick hen! Need help

emulhall

Chirping
Aug 25, 2019
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I’m new here and actually created an account so I could get help on this. My hen Gwen has fallen very ill quickly out of nowhere. She keeps her feathers puffed out and keeps tucking her head in her body. Her comb also appears to have shrunk a lot and isn’t its normal bright red. According to my boyfriend, she is feeling thin. She is just constantly sleeping, but does eat and drink when given the opportunity. Her coopmate Pepper is a bit of a bully, so could some malnourishment from Pepper guarding the food and water be the culprit? Does anyone have any idea what could be hurting her? Any advice is appreciated.

I also am trying to get her an appointment with a vet but they’re all closed. I’m hoping to have her in by tomorrow if need be.
 

ChickNanny13

Crossing the Road
8 Years
Jun 23, 2013
9,167
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The Big Island/Hawaii
How old is Gwen?
When did she lay last?
Is Pepper same age as Gwen?
Are there any other chickens?

I'm thinking at this point Gwen is depressed from being bullied and probably not getting any nourishment. You may want to try scrambling up some eggs to see if you can get Gwen to eat or even tuna or dry cat food moisten. Try some Nutri Drench to help boost her.
 

Wyorp Rock

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Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Sep 20, 2015
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Southern N.C. Mountains
She is just constantly sleeping, but does eat and drink when given the opportunity. Her coopmate Pepper is a bit of a bully, so could some malnourishment from Pepper guarding the food and water be the culprit?
Try separating Gwen out to her own space away from Pepper. See if she perks up when she has her own food/water.

How old are the hens?
Do they lay eggs?
What do you feed, including treats?
How much space do you have for them - sqft of coop/run?
If you have photos you wish to share, those would be most welcome.
 

emulhall

Chirping
Aug 25, 2019
108
63
88
How old is Gwen?
When did she lay last?
Is Pepper same age as Gwen?
Are there any other chickens?

I'm thinking at this point Gwen is depressed from being bullied and probably not getting any nourishment. You may want to try scrambling up some eggs to see if you can get Gwen to eat or even tuna or dry cat food moisten. Try some Nutri Drench to help boost her.
Gwen and Pepper are the same age. They’re about 11 months old, almost a year. My boyfriend and I were away for the weekend and his mom was caring for them so I’m unsure whose eggs they are, but there are two eggs in the coop. And no, it’s just those two, which is why the bullying might be severe. And it’s okay for her to eat cat food? I thought since there’s typically chicken in it that that was a no no?
 

emulhall

Chirping
Aug 25, 2019
108
63
88
Try separating Gwen out to her own space away from Pepper. See if she perks up when she has her own food/water.

How old are the hens?
Do they lay eggs?
What do you feed, including treats?
How much space do you have for them - sqft of coop/run?
If you have photos you wish to share, those would be most welcome.
They are both 11 months and lay lots of eggs. We feed them a layer feed and give them mealworms and oats as treats. I want to start giving them more fruits and veggies but I’m always nervous it’ll be something they can’t eat. I’m not entirely sure how big the coop is because my boyfriend bought it and handled all that but there’s a downstairs, an upstairs, and two little laying areas. There is a door that we can shut to separate them. Do you think that’s a good idea? Or should we separate them entirely in a whole other area?
 

Wyorp Rock

🐓 ❤ 🐛
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Sep 20, 2015
39,574
56,507
1,342
Southern N.C. Mountains
Gwen and Pepper are the same age. They’re about 11 months old, almost a year. My boyfriend and I were away for the weekend and his mom was caring for them so I’m unsure whose eggs they are, but there are two eggs in the coop. And no, it’s just those two, which is why the bullying might be severe. And it’s okay for her to eat cat food? I thought since there’s typically chicken in it that that was a no no?

They are both 11 months and lay lots of eggs. We feed them a layer feed and give them mealworms and oats as treats. I want to start giving them more fruits and veggies but I’m always nervous it’ll be something they can’t eat. I’m not entirely sure how big the coop is because my boyfriend bought it and handled all that but there’s a downstairs, an upstairs, and two little laying areas. There is a door that we can shut to separate them. Do you think that’s a good idea? Or should we separate them entirely in a whole other area?
For an occassional treat or to entice her to eat, cat food is probably o.k. I would limit it to 1Tablespoon, most canned foods are high in salt.
If she's not well, I would encourage her to eat her normal feed - limit how many treats she gets, you want her to be eating a balanced feed if at all possible.

Do you have photos of your coop/run - you may be able to fashion a barrier inside the run so Gwen can have some space of her own until she gets back on her feet.
 

emulhall

Chirping
Aug 25, 2019
108
63
88
For an occassional treat or to entice her to eat, cat food is probably o.k. I would limit it to 1Tablespoon, most canned foods are high in salt.
If she's not well, I would encourage her to eat her normal feed - limit how many treats she gets, you want her to be eating a balanced feed if at all possible.

Do you have photos of your coop/run - you may be able to fashion a barrier inside the run so Gwen can have some space of her own until she gets back on her feet.
There is actually a door in the coop that can shut off the little upstairs and the little downstairs. We’ve shut that door so Pepper and Gwen are apart and Gwen has perked up nicely! Eating and drinking like she hasn’t in days.
 

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