Staggering Chicken

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by eanewman, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. eanewman

    eanewman New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Apr 17, 2015
    Hello chicken keeper friends-

    I don't post on here until I'm desperate for answers so please I hope someone will give me some advice. I have about an 18 month old barred rock hen going through her first molt and I don't know if she's just having a difficult time or if there's something I'm missing. She began staggering yesterday and walking sideways and seemed a little worse today. She seems to be eating and drinking fine, although she does appear to have had some weight loss. She had a fecal test done about 2 weeks ago because she was acting lethargic and had some abnormal looking poop which was negative for worms and coccydia. Vet just said give her vitamins and keep her warm and could be related to molting. She did improve and was acting normal until the staggering drunk walking behavior since yesterday. Could this be related to molting or is there just something crazy weird that I'm missing. I have 2 other hens her age molting just as badly, but they're acting fine. Has anyone every experienced anything like this? PLEASE HELP!!!
     
  2. cavemanrich

    cavemanrich Overrun With Chickens

    3,146
    820
    276
    Apr 6, 2014
    Melrose Park Illinois
    I had chickens molt and never behave such as this. I suspect something different, but have no Idea what it may be. Have kept chickens about 20 years now.
    WISHING YOU BEST, Hope someone can suggest something. [​IMG] You already did see a vet.
     
  3. GingersHuman

    GingersHuman Chillin' With My Peeps

    731
    102
    146
    Sep 23, 2016
    NC
    I had one hen with similar symptoms, though it was sudden onset, and I believe that she had a stroke, though can't prove it.
     
  4. eanewman

    eanewman New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Apr 17, 2015
    We may be going back to the vet... we just did another visual inspection and poor thing looks like a porcupine. Could find absolutely nothing physically and she's always been my best hen and layer. Thanks for your reply though...
     
  5. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Howdy eanewman

    I have not experienced this with my moulting chickens either but I have read some threads about this in the past.

    I did a search and came up with this one:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...cause-staggering-and-inability-to-walk-update

    and this one:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...angely-any-idea-why-moulting-is-the-answer/10

    and this one:

    http://chat.allotment-garden.org/index.php?topic=47714.0

    I am not saying that you do not need to get her checked out and also not saying that she does not have some neurological issue or other issue; but just a quick search seems to indicate that it could be a possibility [​IMG]
     
  6. eanewman

    eanewman New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Apr 17, 2015
    Thank you so much! I had come across some of these last night while googling staggering chicken. It is just the strangest thing I've ever witnessed with my chickens. It looks like it should be something more serious and I guess I'm just hoping the moulting is simply the issue. We went ahead and isolated her tonight and I'll make sure she's eating & drinking. Praying it's just moulting. All this situation will do if she pulls through is make me dread moulting season now...
     
  7. MadamePoule

    MadamePoule New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Oct 25, 2016
    I have not heard of molting and neurological symptoms go together, but I'm not a vet. Neurological symptoms could be due to a head strike if the bird ran into something, a stroke, tumor or virus affecting ears or brain. You could take her back to the vet and have blood drawn or Xray, but I'm not sure you'd be able to do much from there, unless there is an infection and antibiotics
    I'm not a vet, but see a lot of wild bird (licensed rehaber) with injuries, so I'm basing the above on that experience.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by