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Very subdued hen

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Tickle123uk, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. Tickle123uk

    Tickle123uk New Egg

    Sep 6, 2013

    I bought a hen at point of lay a couple of months ago. She does not appear to have come into lay yet (she may have laid a couple of very soft shelled eggs that burst but we are not sure it was her as it could have been one of three new hens). A few weeks ago she had a foamy eye that cleared straight away and hasn't happened since.

    Last week she became very subdued, was last to come out of the coop and began moving about very slowly, hardly eating and drinking. She was also standing on one leg a lot. I seperated her a few days ago when I noticed all she wanted to do was lie down and close her eyes. Since being in the seperate enclosure she does not seem to have eaten or drunk anything and has only started getting up today. She had not pooped either until today. She makes very quiet cooing noises when I go in.

    She does not want to be handled and I have had as good a look at her as possible, but she appears physically good on the outside.

    She has been recently wormed and all her coop mates seem fine. She is the last in the pecking order and will often sleep on the floor of the coop. Until she got ill, she would escape over the fence into the rest of the garden so may have eaten something she shouldn't.

    Any ideas would be gratefully appreciated.

    Kind regards,

  2. Nutcase

    Nutcase Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2012
    My Coop
    She is showing some signs of egg binding. I had a hen who displayed all those symptoms, she later died because I didn't recognise the symptoms soon enough. She's not pooping because when an egg gets stuck it interferes with their digestive systems and bodily waste. The soft eggs were probably a prelude to egg binding. It sounds like she may not have enough calcium in her diet. Could you post a photo of her? Something you also might want to do is feel around her vent to see if it's hard/swollen.

    Good luck! [​IMG]
  3. katbriar

    katbriar Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 15, 2012
    Northern New Mexico
    I have not had an egg bound chicken, mine are just starting to lay. But reading on it folks are saying that if egg bound, the egg can often be felt as a hard spot in the abdomen. If you can't feel it tha way but still suspect it, you can feel with a finger (glove and lubricant) inserted about one and one half inches into the vent.

    If she's egg bound, a soak in a warm water bath and a calcium pill (human) usually will let her lay.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Nutcase

    Nutcase Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2012
    My Coop
    @Tickle123uk : I recently had an egg bound hen (not caused by diet, she was getting over another illness), and I had to use a pair of tweezers to remove the long squishy shell from her vent. She recovered very quickly. You may have to do this if worst comes to worst but if you can't see the egg, start off with katbriar's suggestion. During the laying process a bit of oil around the vent can help.

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