Usually lively hen suddenly acting quiet and sleepy

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickenslave54, Aug 10, 2014.

  1. chickenslave54

    chickenslave54 New Egg

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    Aug 10, 2014
    Southwest Washington State
    We're very new to chickens, so I'll try to give as much information as possible because I have absolutely no experience other than what I've learned on the internet and in books. Actually, they're not mine, they're my mother's but I'm staying with her right now. We're concerned about one of her barred rock hens who used to be the most vocal and lively of the four. They're all about 21-22 weeks old. She was the first to start laying on August 1st, and laid a small but otherwise perfect egg. The next day she laid half of a soft-shelled egg and then seemed very tired until she suddenly, a few hours later, laid the other half of the soft-shelled egg. After that she laid a regular egg every day for about a week and now hasn't produced an egg in two days. That doesn't particularly worry me because I know their schedules are a little odd at first.
    However she's been falling asleep standing up, not nearly as active, and has been going into the coop and roosting far earlier than the rest. She used to be very vocal and now she isn't. Her feces looks different from the rest; it's very lumpy and greenish/white. She used to run away like the rest of them do when you lean down to pet her but now she just kind of stands there and tries to dodge you really slowly.
    It has been very uncharacteristically hot here the entire month, being in the 80s and above almost every day and lately in the 90s. She doesn't seem to have lost her appetite and I've seen her drink water, though I'm not sure if she's drinking enough because I'm not here all day to monitor her. We're currently in the process of switching over from a regular old watering system to a nipple watering system because they keep knocking over their water and getting dirt in it.
    Could she be egg bound? Dehydrated? Stressed (We have a hawk that has decided to take up residence in a tree in our property VERY close to the coop)? Does anyone have any other ideas and/or solutions?
     
  2. chickenslave54

    chickenslave54 New Egg

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    Aug 10, 2014
    Southwest Washington State
    I forgot to add that she's been walking around with her tail down and this all started about two days ago, the day she laid her last egg. I also wanted to add that we do provide them with oyster shells and they're currently eating Layena crumbles.
     
  3. Hanna8

    Hanna8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 26, 2012
    My guess would be that she is egg bound or dehydrated, or both. Soft shelled eggs are much harder to lay as they give a bit when the hen's muscles try to push it put. She might have another one of those stuck inside her. Read up on egg binding and try giving her a warm bath and massage. I would also recommend separating her for a little while with a bowl of water. That way you will know if she drinks and can see if that makes her perk up.
     
  4. chickenslave54

    chickenslave54 New Egg

    3
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    Aug 10, 2014
    Southwest Washington State
    Thank you so much! I will do that right away!
     

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