Swollen abdomen.......question about peritonitis

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Country4ever, May 16, 2011.

  1. Country4ever

    Country4ever Songster

    Oct 26, 2007
    I had a hen once who had ascites and I had to drain her abdomen every few months, for 5 years. The fluid was clear. I'm assuming this was either a cardiac problem or an ovarian cyst problem.
    I also had a hen with a big abdomen, who I drained and the fluid was bright green. I'm thinking that was peritonitis. She died soon after that.

    Now I have a hen who has a firm, large abdomen. In preparation for tapping her abdomen and seeing what's in there, I gave her 22.7mg Baytril. I gave her a warm bath, which is liked, but it didn't stimulate anything. I put some prep H in her vent. I felt up in there and couldn't feel anything. Before I did all this, I put her in her own crate so I could watch her. She pooped and it had yellow in it and smelled like egg.

    From these symptoms, does it sound like broken egg inside her? (as opposed to internal laying).
    If I tap her abdomen and its green, I'm thinking its pretty much over........don't you?
    Is peritonitis from a broken egg ever treatable?

    I'm starting to think that my old hens (8 years old) not only risk bumblefoot from jumping down off their 4' high ladder roost, but that maybe they're breaking eggs inside them when they jump that far too. I'm going out today and taking most of the higher roost rungs off.

    I'm afraid I'm getting emotionally worn out from losing my hens.......even though it was over 7 years. Its like losing a wonderful pet all the time. I started with 17 and now have 6.

    I appreciate your input.

  2. gallusdomesticus

    gallusdomesticus Songster

    Nov 14, 2008
    Lynn Haven, FL
    I admire you for being able to give your 8 year olds, long happy lives. You must be doing something right. I just lost my oldest hen, at six years, due to a respiratory infection.
    I have a Silver laced Wyandotte that has had ascites for almost three years. I drain her abdomen 3-4 times a year and the fluid is always a light straw color. I have not seen green liquid coming out of her but if I did, I would take her temperature to confirm she has an infection. If she's in the normal 103-105 deg range and you extracted green fluid, I would guess that perhaps you penetrated her intestine and got fluid contaminated with bile.
    I would doubt that your girls break eggs internally by jumping down from their roost. The shell encapulates the egg immediately before it travels to the cloaca to be laid. I doubt that they could generate enough force by jumping to break an egg shell, plus you should see egg fragments in her droppings.
    Good luck with your girls.

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