We lost our first hen; questions [warning:pictures]

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by RRLaney, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. RRLaney

    RRLaney Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So we lost Melisandre (Meli) one of our first 4 hens. Of course it had to be one of my favorite hens :hit She was a 9 month old red sex link who died suddenly overnight. My boyfriend found her when he went to open up the coops in the morning. She was downstairs by the coop door laying on her back. I've been doing a ton of research, but I'm curious if any of y'all have any opinions on what might have caused it. I'm really hoping it's not something contagious, but I'm thinking it's not...
    Prior to her death all of our chickens were acting perfectly normal. Meli was eating, drinking, and laying daily. About a month ago she got really lethargic and I was told to worm the chickens. We used Wazine and she seemed perfectly fine immediately after. We never saw any worms and none of them seemed to lose any weight. A couple months before that she had what we thought was heat stoke, and was perfectly fine after a couple hours in the AC with electrolytes and lots of water. I'm starting to wonder if she maybe had some sort of underlying conditions causing her to get sick/lethargic while all the other hens were perfectly fine..?
    The only other strange thing was that a few days before she died we found her on the ground floor (far from the roosts and nesting boxes) laying an egg at about 11PM. We had never seen her do that before, but I guess maybe we should have been more concerned than we were. The place we found her dead was the same spot she laid the egg that night.
    So any thoughts? Should I be worried about the other hens?
    Thanks in advance for y'alls help, we're pretty broken up over it!
    [​IMG]
    RIP Meli girl, we love you!

    [​IMG]
    Everything look normal here...? Could it have been an egg laying problem?

    This is how we found her...
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2016
  2. ECSandCCFS

    ECSandCCFS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So sorry for your loss!! Could she have been egg bound? I also have heard that eggs breaking inside them can cuase internal bleeding. I'm not an expert in this area, so hopefully someone with a little more knowledge and experience can help on this one! I'm sorry again for the loss of your hen!!
     
  3. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would say heart attack they do die on there backs but its confusing me why her vent is like that
     
  4. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Look up Sudden death syndrome in chicken might be it
     
  5. RRLaney

    RRLaney Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I did. Everything I read has been making me think heart attack or yolk stroke...which is why I haven't been stressed about it being contagious. The boyfriend is convinced it's an egg laying problem just cause of that one weird night and her messy vent. Any experts on that? I'm really curious to know. And to figure out if whatever it was is preventable in the future.
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    In the picture, her vent looks dilated like she may have been eggbound or suffered from a prolapse (or both.) The droppings on her messy vent can attract flies in summer which may lay maggot larvae, and can cause flystrike, where the maggots invade the insides. Any excess droppings should be washed off, and that also can let you see if there is a prolapse. Feeling inside the vent with a finger 1-2 inches is a good way to rule out egg binding. Sometimes after a chicken dies, if you open up the abdomen and look at the insides, you can sometimes figure out what caused the death. Sorry for your loss.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. RRLaney

    RRLaney Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 1, 2016
    Round Rock, TX

    Okay thank you! I work in an ER so I thought it looked like a prolapse but I'm still new to all the chicken medical issues. Are there any signs leading up to a chicken being egg bound? Cause she was acting fine before she died (at least during the day when we could see her).
    As far as the messy vent goes, if we just hose them off and try to keep them clean is that good enough? Do we need to trim their butt feathers or anything? One of my other sex links has a messy vent right now too but she laid an egg fine yesterday.
     

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