Swelling between legs of hen

Little Fuzzy

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Jan 16, 2016
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My 3 yr old Golden Star, a reliable layer, has developed a large swelling under the vent closer to her legs. She is walking, but looks like she has a loaded diaper on. I thought she might be egg bound so I soaked her in a warm bath and stuck my finger up the vent quite far without ever feeling an egg. The swelling is soft and I have massaged it, but it was larger today. She is eating and drinking and does not appear in pain. Can they develop internal egg laying later in life or does that start early on? This all started yesterday.
 

Wyorp Rock

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From your description, it does sound like internal laying. Egg Yolk Peritonitis, Ascites, cancer, tumors and Salpingitis are all common in laying hens.

Unfortunately, there is not a lot that can be done to treat these conditions. With mine, I wait and watch - as long as they are eating/drinking and participating with the flock, dust bathing and preening, I leave them be.
I also check their crop very regularly to make sure it's emptying overnight - this has been a good indicator for me - if the crop does not empty, then there is more swelling/internal inflammation and the hen is starting to decline. I do treat for slow crop, but if things don't start moving and/or they start to decline over several days, then I consider putting them down.
I know this is not what you want to hear, I'm very sorry. Hopefully others will chime in with their thoughts/opinions.
 

Little Fuzzy

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Jan 16, 2016
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Yes I agree. I found an article about it and she has all the classic symptoms. I just didn't know it was something that could develop later in life. She has been a great layer but she is over three years old. If she was young I would take her to the vet, but she is quite swollen and I'm not sure anything can be done for her now. I do check my chickens everyday and this came on quite suddenly. Or at least the visible symptoms did. With a lot of chickens it's hard to keep track of who is laying and who isn't. She came out of a hard molt this winter, i'm not sure if that had anything to do with it,but I won't let her suffer. As long as she is happy she is OK.
 

Alaskan

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Yes I agree. I found an article about it and she has all the classic symptoms. I just didn't know it was something that could develop later in life. She has been a great layer but she is over three years old. If she was young I would take her to the vet, but she is quite swollen and I'm not sure anything can be done for her now. I do check my chickens everyday and this came on quite suddenly. Or at least the visible symptoms did. With a lot of chickens it's hard to keep track of who is laying and who isn't. She came out of a hard molt this winter, i'm not sure if that had anything to do with it,but I won't let her suffer. As long as she is happy she is OK.
sadly it is the super productive breeds that tend to not live as long due to various egg laying issues .


:hugs
 

Wyorp Rock

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Yes I agree. I found an article about it and she has all the classic symptoms. I just didn't know it was something that could develop later in life. She has been a great layer but she is over three years old. If she was young I would take her to the vet, but she is quite swollen and I'm not sure anything can be done for her now. I do check my chickens everyday and this came on quite suddenly. Or at least the visible symptoms did. With a lot of chickens it's hard to keep track of who is laying and who isn't. She came out of a hard molt this winter, i'm not sure if that had anything to do with it,but I won't let her suffer. As long as she is happy she is OK.

Sadly, internal laying is common in hens, no matter the age, but as they get older it does seem to be more prevalent.

I agree with you - as long as she is happy within herself, I let them be, but do keep watch on them. So sorry.
 

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