Unsteady 'Mangy' Hen

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by CALB, Apr 23, 2007.

  1. CALB

    CALB New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Apr 23, 2007
    Hi all,
    I only have 2 isa brown hens, and both started laying about 5 months ago. One of them is looking quite well, but the other has started to lose feathers and is looking a bit 'mangy'. We're heading into winter here, so I doubt that she's molting.

    Egg production has slowed, which I was told to expect at this time of the year, but this morning I noticed that she was walking unsteadily and tipping over. She first used her wings to balance, and then sat down to eat.

    I haven't seen the other hen picking on her, and there is no sign of mites. I would think that the other hen would be sick too if it were a parasite. There's no blood in the stool, nor is it runny. Everything in the coop smells fine to me. Do you think she has a nutrient deficiency? Need to do something before she deteriorates further.

    Thanks everyone. Any ideas?
     
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Well, if she has pin feathers growing out... she could be doing a moult. Check to see if that is the case.
     
  3. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quick, check her for lice and red mite which suck the blood.
    My 16 year old goldilocks did exactly the same thing, she lost feathers, her comb faded, and she fell over a lot. The vet checked her and it was mite infestation and took 2 treatments to get her back to full health. she improved greatly staright after first treatment. Not sure which country you are in and what you use for treatment. But I had to use an aviary bird mite spray as all shops had sold out of powder, though it worked perfectly,
    Good luck
    Helen
     
  4. CALB

    CALB New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Apr 23, 2007
    I checked for mites and found nothing. Her comb is still bright, so maybe it is just a moult. Do they become unsteady and weak when this happens? and would this normally happen in late autumn?

    I cleaned the coop out again and changed their water, then I hand fed her some mashed up laying pellets, and she was walking better this morning. Will monitor the next few days.

    Thanks for all your help.
     
  5. bantymum

    bantymum Chillin' With My Peeps

    Im glad she didnt have mites, My hens do become quite lethargic with molt, I recently lost my broody who must have been molting but dont know why she died.
    Some high protein food may help. , cooked peas,
    cooked spinach etc.
    I also give corn.
    Hope she improves for you.
    Helen
     
  6. hencackle

    hencackle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2007
    Telford, TN
  7. CALB

    CALB New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Apr 23, 2007
    She survived and is walking normally again. She still looks a bit mangy, but at least she can stand up. I hand fed her for a few days, and watched to make sure she was drinking. She is laying again, though not every day. It seems to be working, but I'll continue the special treatment until she looks nice and fluffy again. I still have not much idea about what it was, but suspect it was dietary.

    Anyway, thanks for your advice.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by