Standing Still, Puffed Up, Closing Eyes

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Orit, Nov 18, 2018.

  1. Orit

    Orit Chirping

    43
    10
    87
    Jun 21, 2011
    My hen was fine this morning, free ranging and having a good time. For the past few hours she has been all puffed up, standing still, and closing her eyes periodically. When I first noticed her, she was standing in the middle of the run and wasn't moving. I put dried worms out and while everyone feasted, she still didn't move. Then she slowly moved herself into the corner of the coop/run and has just been standing there. Thoughts? Egg bound? One of my red stars has been laying oddly colored/shaped eggs lately and I'm pretty sure it is her (but no way to be totally sure). I put out some oyster shell last week although it doesn't look like anyone has taken anything from it. Here are some pictures. Any advice on what to do would be greatly appreciated. IMG_4382.jpg IMG_4381.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  2. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

    6,536
    7,216
    516
    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    Hi
    How old is she?
    Can you post a photo of all of her? We can't see her back end which is important when there is a possibility of a reproductive disorder.
    It may be that she has a shell less egg in her system which is very hard for them to pass and really knocks them out of sorts. Can you tell if there is any abdominal swelling or bloat. The is easiest assessed by cupping your hand between their legs from behind and comparing to other hens. Done whilst roosting caused minimum effort or upset and enables you to make a direct comparison. Does she walk normally or is she more upright or her legs wider apart than the other hens?

    If she is over a year old it may be that she is coming to the end of her laying cycle and her body is depleted of calcium and a soft shell is causing her discomfort or it may be something more concerning like an infection or internal laying and/or EYP. Has she started moulting yet?
    She might benefit from a soak in a warm Epsom Salts bath and then a blow dry and a direct dose of calcium into her beak.... human calcium tablets with vitamin D are good or Caltrate or even a Tums indigestion tablet. If you break it up into small pieces and put them in her beak she should swallow them or you can try crushing and sprinkling them on some scrambled egg or other favourite treat if she will eat, but it sounds like she may not be up for that. Whilst she is soaking you could do an internal exam and gently massage and lubricate her vent to see if that will help her pass an egg. Be aware she may poop whilst doing this and she may feel more comfortable after pooping so whilst not pleasant, it is a good thing. After her soak and dry and calcium supplement I would put her in a crate or box with a heat pad and leave it in a dim place for her to relax and hopefully "pass" the problem.
    More information regarding the above questions may steer us in a different direction but at the moment, that would be my initial action to treat her.
     
  3. Clubber1234

    Clubber1234 Songster

    517
    995
    197
    Feb 11, 2018
    England, Devon
    My Coop
    Is her crop all watery?
     
  4. Orit

    Orit Chirping

    43
    10
    87
    Jun 21, 2011
    Thanks so much - this is super informative! She is about a year and a half old. I have 2 Red Stars and for the past few weeks, one of them has been laying oddly-colored and shaped eggs. I'm not certain, but I think it is her. I put oyster shell out about a week ago. I've been getting 1 Red Star "normal" egg every day or 2 for the past week so either both are laying very infrequently, or one has stopped laying altogether. Since all the hens have slowed down their laying (I don't use a light in their coop) it's hard to tell. If one has stopped laying altogether, I think the evidence does point to her.

    I will try the Epsom Salt and Calcium bath. How much Epsom salt should I use? (I have a smallish plastic tub that I'll use). And should I give her a full Calcium Pill (I have Calcium Citrate with Vit. D). Here is a picture of her vent area although I know you can't see her vent and a full body picture. Hope this might help.
    IMG_4383.jpg IMG_4384.jpg
     
  5. Orit

    Orit Chirping

    43
    10
    87
    Jun 21, 2011
    I'm not sure how I can tell that. Any advice?
     
  6. Orit

    Orit Chirping

    43
    10
    87
    Jun 21, 2011
    I just finished an Epsom salt bath and blow dried her. I've never done an internal exam (I know I should learn). I massaged her vent area but again, not sure if I was doing that correctly. I crushed up a calcium pill and offered it to her. She took a few pieces on her own. As I didn't have a 2nd set of hands, I couldn't put it directly into her beak and hold her still at the same time. She didn't poop during the bath but afterwards she did - it was liquid and greenish. I don't think there is any abdominal swelling or bloat. I had her inside a bit next to a heater but then put her back in the coop just now. She did walk a bit and seems to be walking normally. Her legs seem to be the same as the others. She hasn't started molting yet. I observed her for a bit and mostly she's just standing there (although no longer in the corner) and closing her eyes. Her crop seemed very hard (like there was a small ball in there) before the bath but softer after the bath. The picture below of her just standing is exactly what she is doing in the coop right now.
    IMG_4386.jpg IMG_4393.jpg IMG_4403.jpg IMG_4404.jpg



     
  7. Clubber1234

    Clubber1234 Songster

    517
    995
    197
    Feb 11, 2018
    England, Devon
    My Coop
    I mean sort of squidgy really. Like a squashey egg.
    If she has it could be sour crop.
     
  8. andree

    andree Hatching

    8
    1
    9
    Oct 21, 2017
    How is your hen doing this morning?

    I have the same issue with one of my hens, which I posted about yesterday here. I gave her a bath last night too and like you, I didn't feel anything in the vent but she did poop a few times. I explored the vent three times and since she seems better this morning, I'm thinking that this may have loosen things in there allowing a blocage to clear. She is walking around, pecking the ground and I haven't seen her standing still all puffed up like over the weekend, so maybe she is on the mend? I did notice however he vent opening and closing with nothing coming out. Is this normal?

    I hope yours is on the mend. I'll follow here to see what you find and will post any developments here too in case it helps.
     
  9. rebrascora

    rebrascora Free Ranging

    6,536
    7,216
    516
    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    @andree
    No, the vent pulsing is not normal. It usually indicates that they are trying to pass something. If it is in rhythm with her breathing, it can indicate respiratory issues as their are a couple of large air sacs in the body either side of the vent which act like bellows and that can cause their back end to appear to pulse.

    @Orit

    That poop does not look good. Looks like quite a lot of bile in it which can indicate her digestive tract is shutting down. That might also tie in with her crop being hard when she hasn't eaten much. I'm having real problems with my computer right now to answer in full as it keeps jamming, but if you can afford veterinary care it might be a good idea.
     
  10. Orit

    Orit Chirping

    43
    10
    87
    Jun 21, 2011
    Hi,
    Thanks for checking in and connecting! My hen seemed more like herself this morning so I left for work. I've just come back on a lunch break to check on her and she does seem more like her normal self. She fussed when I tried to pick her up (when yesterday she hardly moved when I picked her up). She's walking around the run, eating, not so puffed up. Maybe it was a blockage, as you say? I will have to get back to work but as of now, things do look more positive. Not sure what to make of it.

    How is your hen doing?
     
    micstrachan likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: