Sick Hen? Watch or Cull?

MattH

In the Brooder
Jun 3, 2015
62
2
49
Culpeper, VA
I have a hen that has poop build up on her behind.. she came to me not long ago and we cleaned her up. It didn't take long and that mess was tangled up in her hair again.. Now she is acting funny. Not participating in free ranging, just being very lonely and boring. At night she doesn't roost and lays by herself on the floor. He comb and wattle is almost non existent and not red, but a pale pink. Should we get rid of this hen to save the rest? Thanks.
 
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FarmerMac

Chirping
5 Years
Dec 28, 2014
423
37
91
Virginia
You can clean her butt with warm water and soap, then clip the feathers near her vent so no more poop gets stucked to them. Sometimes flies lay eggs in that stucked poop and maggots develop and will eat the flesh in that area.
 
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Wyorp Rock

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Sep 20, 2015
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You can clean her butt with warm water and soap, then clip the feathers near her vent so no more poop gets stucked to them. Sometimes flies lay eggs in that stucked poop and maggots develop and will eat the flesh in that area.
Agreed. @FarmerMac brings up some good points.

Wash her bum and give her a good look over. Cut out or crush the poop that has accumulated and give her a trim - look at the vent and surrounding tissue to see if there are any wounds, maggots, etc.

Do you know how old this hen is? Taking a fecal sample to the vet and having some tests run for Cocci and worms would be a good idea as well. If she is very new to your property, it's possible she may have been introduced to a strain of Cocci that she is not resistant to. If she came to you with poop buildup - then she could have worms, but of course she could also have something more serious going on as well.
 

MattH

In the Brooder
Jun 3, 2015
62
2
49
Culpeper, VA
She is a little over a year old. Vent was clean when I cleaned her the first time. I checked her this morning.. I tried to get her up and moving, but she hesitated and seemed like she could not get her footing.i will clean her again this evening and trim her feathers. I'm am worried if it's a disease it will spread to the others..
 
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Wyorp Rock

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If you can, post some photos of poop and of how she looks.

When you get a hold of her, feel the abdomen for any swelling, bloating, feeling of fullness (like fluid-balloon).

I agree, it is worrisome - separating her may be a good idea, but if she has something contagious more than likely any chickens she's been housed with are exposed. It's also possible that she picked something up from an existing flock that you have if they have any history of illness.

Encourage her to drink, offer some poultry vitamins in her water if you have them.
 

MattH

In the Brooder
Jun 3, 2015
62
2
49
Culpeper, VA
No diseases that I'm aware of. The 1st 6 birds were bought 2 years ago as pullets, and this second 6 were bought as pullets as well.
 

MattH

In the Brooder
Jun 3, 2015
62
2
49
Culpeper, VA
Oh I will post pics soon, I'm not sure where he abdomen is, but she seems swollen below her breast bone
 

MattH

In the Brooder
Jun 3, 2015
62
2
49
Culpeper, VA
None of the photo uploads are working. We cleaned her bottom again and snipped some feathers where the poop got caught up. She pooped before we washed her and it was diarrhea. She is pretty swollen below her breast bone and around her vent. I believe she is on her way out. Eyes stay primarily closed and won't react to much of anything at all. Breathing is very shallow almost like she isn't breathing at all. I tried sticking my finger in her vent, not sure I'm heading in the right direction.. seems as if my finger only goes in the right side around a bone? Straight in is closed off.
 
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Wyorp Rock

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Sep 20, 2015
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I'm sorry you lost her.

It sounds like she could possibly have been egg bound or if there was a lot of swelling she may have had an internal laying/reproductive disorder like Peritonitis, Salpingitis, Ascites, cancer or tumors. Any of these can cause swelling and fluids/egg masses that can eventually shut the body down.

Without performing a necrospy to see what the obstruction was there's no way to know, I'm sorry.
 

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