Sick Hen, Probably Ate Poisonous Plant

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Porch Chickens, Feb 16, 2016.

  1. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 23, 2013
    [​IMG]

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    My Rhode Island Red, Merida, has a shriveled comb, poopy butt, and is lying down a lot. Found her in the coop this morning lying under the perch with lots of chicken dander on her back which means the other birds were up there shaking their feathers over her for a while. She's been this way for a couple of weeks. She can walk, but seems to like to stand on one leg (checked feet and legs look fine). Looks sleepy-eyed.

    We used to let the birds have the run of our yard lawn, but cut back their range a few weeks ago, so that they can only go in a more limited area near their very large coop. About a week ago, I noticed our birds were eating falling leaves from a plant they've always had access to, but probably never ate before when they had the run of the yard and could eat the grass. This plant is toxic-- it's called Blue Potato Bush (little purple flowers). It's apparently not technically a potato, but is still poisonous. I only realized it was toxic about a week ago and removed it, but this hen still looks bad. Wondering if there's anything I can do for her. I did give her some charcoal as soon as we realized this might be from eating this plant, but of course she may have been eating it for quite a while. I didn't actually see her eat any but saw the other hens eating it-- funny enough the others are fine, thank goodness. We did have one other little silkie who got sick a couple of times and the second time she died. Now in hind-site, I think she must have been poisoned from this plant too. She foraged more than the others, because she was at the bottom of the pecking order and had a hard time at the feeder. We always tried to had feed her every day just to make sure she got enough food.

    So, any tips to bring my sick bird back to health? Last time we brought a sick chicken to avian vet it was over $200, so we want to avoid that if possible. Also not even sure it will work she's been sick so long. If it's poisoning that occurred at least a week ago, I'm hoping we can just do something to support her and build her back up.
    I wonder if I should give further charcoal or if it makes and sense when it's been this long, or if I should force her to drink some water with a dropper? I've given medicine and food with a dropper straight into the crop of another hen who was sick before, so know how to do that.
    Thanks!
     
  2. Alexandra33

    Alexandra33 Chillin' With My Peeps

  3. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you Alex!
    I'm a little worried about dehydrating her and didn't have Epsom salts on hand (will get some later today) so I decided to do more charcoal. Mixed it with water as they said in the link you gave and forced her to drink 6 ml with a medicine syringe. After that, though, I found she started drinking it on her own right out of the cup I was holding, so I guess she likes it.
    I also offered her some unflavored Greek yogurt, which we give them pretty regularly when laying for calcium (one hen has really thin shelled eggs and this helps instantly) She really ate that up. I'm keeping her in a separate enclosure with her own food and water and will watch her carefully for improvement or otherwise.
    When they talk about "electrolyte fluid", do they mean something like Pedialite for babies, or is there something special for fowl?
     
  4. Alexandra33

    Alexandra33 Chillin' With My Peeps

    You're so welcome! Yogurt is good for everything, so you've done great by giving her that. [​IMG] I actually revived a chick who looked ready to kick the bucket that way!

    Electrolytes, to me, would mean Save-A-Chick electrolyte powder which you add to their water supply, or Rooster Booster Electrolytes with vitamins and minerals and probiotics added. I've used both, and they work great! Another thing that can't hurt is Nutri-drench in her water or from a dropper, which would provide her with extra nutrients.

    -Alex
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2016
  5. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you Alex! I just called my local garden and chicken place and they have the electrolytes for fowl, so I will be heading over there right away. I'll check for the Nutri-drench too, in case they carry it.
    Thanks!: )
    Monta
     
  6. Alexandra33

    Alexandra33 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Again, you're welcome! [​IMG]

    Please keep me updated on Merida's condition. I would love to know how she's doing!

    -Alex
     
  7. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    She has eaten a lot today-- yogurt, oatmeal, and scrambled eggs, plus the charcoal solution and electrolytes, so I think she must be feeling better. One thing I didn't mention is that she isn't perching with the other chickens-- she's staying on the ground under the other chickens so I scooted her into a nesting box so she won't get pooped on. I figure if she's eating so much she must be on the mend. Fingers crossed.: )
    Monta
     
  8. Alexandra33

    Alexandra33 Chillin' With My Peeps

    So good to hear! I hope she continues to improve until a complete recovery is reached. [​IMG]

    -Alex
     
  9. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    OK-- I now think she's egg bound. I can feel a big egg just inside her vent. Lubed it a bit and gave a Tums. Any other ideas? I guess I'll soak her bottom. I did wash it this morning, but not soaking for any length of time. I can feel it from the outside, too, off to one side. BIG egg.: (
     
  10. Porch Chickens

    Porch Chickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 23, 2013
    I feel the egg inside her vent, but there is some kind of membrane blocking it from me-- it's not the egg right there-- something is in between.
    Any ideas? I tried shooting some olive oil up there and now she's in the bath soaking.
     

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