Swollen belly on non-egg layer

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by geoaware, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. geoaware

    geoaware Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Southern Maine
    Hi all...we are desperate!. One of our older chickens has a very swollen belly. She is lethargic...we can pick her up easily.

    She has not been laying for six months or more....so being egg bound seems unlikely...

    What can we do????
     
  2. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Is she possibly an internal layer? I have had some pretty old hens that still laid eggs. The eggs might be building up inside her.
     
  3. geoaware

    geoaware Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 3, 2007
    Southern Maine
    We soaked her tonight in warm water and massaged her belly.....which is so swollen. No vets near us will see her [​IMG]

    I felt inside her as much as I could and could not feel anything like an egg.

    We are so sad we can't seem to help her.

    Damn animals...they break your heart at times
     
  4. MoodyChicken

    MoodyChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 15, 2009
    Northern California
    Sounds like the last stages of internal laying. Sometimes, the ovary and the oviduct just fail to connect properly. When a hen of this kind begins to lay, the yolks "miss" the opening to the oviduct and are deposited inside the body cavity, slowly filling all the empty space. Some hens will recover if only a few yolks are laid and if they reabsorb them, but more often than not the hen continues to expand and infection eventually sets in. There's not much you can do at this point. [​IMG] You could try to remove the yolks with a needle and syringe, but if she's acting sickly a nasty infection has likely set in.
     
  5. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    How old is your hen? Could be internal layer, but depending on age the swelling could be the symptom ascites (fluid filled cavity), which sometimes occurs with heart failure and other ailments. Does she have any other symptoms?
     
  6. maggiebelle

    maggiebelle New Egg

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    She doesnt really have any other symptoms. she is drinking. she is pooping. i havent seen her eating but i havnt hung around long enough to check. We brought her in last night to sleep, but have put her back out with the other girls this morning. She used to lay eggs. So could she have turned into an internal layer? is there anything a vet could really do if we found a vet to bring her to??

    edited to add she is about 2 years old
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  7. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Quote:A vet could possibly surgically remove the eggs, give her a hysterectomy and prescribe antibiotics.

    ETA: a 2 year old should definitely still regularly lay eggs - not as much as a 1 year old, but often.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  8. geoaware

    geoaware Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 3, 2007
    Southern Maine
    RIP Princess...and thank you for your eggs.

    She went peacefully.


    Thank you all for your concern and comments

    Gaz and Jen
     
  9. hinkjc

    hinkjc Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    I'm so sorry you lost her. [​IMG]
     

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