Very emaciated hen


11 Years
May 23, 2012
I have a two-year-old white leghorn hen that has been going down hill for a couple weeks.At the beginning of this week I started treating her for gleet and that no longer seems to be a problem, if it ever really was. The big issue is that she is incredibly emaciated, such that her breastbone feels like there is no flesh on it at all. The hen seems to eat, although not as much as my other hens. She also drinks OK and her poops look fairly normal. She has gotten to the point now that she is too weak to fly up to perch at night and just sleeps on the floor. I was keeping her separated from the other hens, but today it is warm outside and my hens free-range so I let her go out with the flock. We are also preparing our vegetable garden bed today and all the hens are happily scratching for bugs and worms. She seems to appreciate being out, although she has to stop to rest often.

I give my hens freeze-dried meal worms as a treat and have been giving them to the sick hen regularly because she eats them more readily than her laying crumbles. She has also had some cottage cheese and yogurt, but doesn't eat enough of these to count for much. I have also been giving her water with probiotics and electrolytes mixed in. Nothing seems to be helping though. Do hens get some form of wasting disease? What could be the cause of this girl's illness?
No; I really don't know anything about worming chickens. Wouldn't I need to worm the whole flock? What do I use?
Safeguard liquid. It is sold as a goat wormer. Use .5cc per 2.2 lb of hens weight (so if they are 7 lbs give them 1.5cc) you can buy a syringe without the needle, then 10 days later give same dosage, do not eat eggs for 14 days after last worming.

If one may have worms it would be best to worm all of them.

Mine was acting the same way, put her on antibiotics and only got a little better, I used the Safeguard wormer and within 2 days she was so much better, I gave them all another dosage last week and she is back to normal and looks great.
I think all of the above advice sounds really good. Once you start this treatment, we have found that strips of bologna work really good for regaining weight. I am not sure if this would be a reccomended practice but it has worked for us.

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