Sudden death


Dec 2, 2017
Northern California
hi everyone,
Being a first time chicken owner can really suck sometimes.
I’m a veterinary technician so I’ve dealt with my fair share of death but I seriously can’t handle losing these ladies!!:hit
This morning I went out to let the ladies free roam and found my Blue Andalusian dead in the dust bath. No wounds, no previous signs of decline or illness. What in the world could hav happened!?!
There was a commotion in the coop a couple hours before. Some loud squawking but thought it was someone showing off that they laid.
She didn’t have anything in her crop and couldn’t feel any “masses” in her abdomen that would suggest being bound.
Only know I’m heartbroken. My favorite girl, Blu bird.

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Quacking Pigeon

Mar 12, 2018
NSW, Australia
My Coop
My Coop
My chooks have respiratory infections which spread and kill them. Usually they would look perfectly fine then they just start gasping for air then die in a day or so. Your one doesn’t seem to look like it would have had that though.


Free Ranging
7 Years
Feb 12, 2015
North Florida
Without a necropsy there is just no way to know for sure as there are so many things that can happen. That would be my recommendation otherwise it will just be throwing guesses at you. It is often well worth it for the information it provides for the rest of your flock, or just for peace of mind. I'm very sorry for your loss, I've been keeping chickens for many years and still grieve every time I lose one.


Dec 2, 2017
Northern California
Yeah I’m aware a necropsy would provide the most information. I guess I’m also wanting to hear some causes of sudde death. I’m sure there’s many. But then I can educate myself on them for the future.

CT Coop

10 Years
Feb 5, 2011
I had a 10 mo old hen die suddenly a few years ago and sent for a you, I want to know why. She was a "special" girl, but had never laid an egg. As it turns out she had several tumors that had been growing and were pressing on her organs. Up until her death she seemed just fine. There is no way to know what happened to your "special" girl, but I'm sure she was a very happy hen in your care. I hope this helps a bit...we do get so attached:(


2 Dozen Chickens Past Normal!
8 Years
Dec 31, 2014
NE Missouri
I am so sorry for your loss.:hugs

You ask some legitimate questions tho. I was going to suggest a congenital heart defect but the sad picture your published shows that she died on her side and not on her back as is common with heart induced death.

Her crop being empty is curious. Evidently she hadn't eaten anything yet this morning. My birds launch from the coop in the morning roaringly hungry. Possibly she wasn't feeling well early on. Chickens you know are great at imitating perfect health right up to the time they drop dead.

Possibly your boss vet would agree to do a necropsy for you.

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