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What killed my chicken?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Jayzandra, Nov 19, 2016.

  1. Jayzandra

    Jayzandra Chillin' With My Peeps

    While I was at work today, my husband got things set up to process our thanksgiving turkey and when I got home he was collecting eggs. He had 3 blue ones and told me which hen he saw getting out of the box. I was super excited because all my easter eggers were laying really pretty blue eggs. Just as we were getting ready to round up the turkey we heard a weird noise. It was almost like a chicken yell. Or kinda like when they eat to fast and get the hiccups, but different. So I went to go see what it was going on and the very same hen my husband just saw getting out of the nest box not even an hour earlier had a whole bunch of blood coming out of her mouth. There was blood splattered on the wall and other chickens, so I think the sound we heard was like a cough or something. I picked her up and she was gasping for air and I could here a gurgling sound. So we immediately put her out of her misery, which really upsets me. We cut her open and looked around inside. There was blood in her crop, but I think that was from swallowing it. Her skin was very yellow, jaundiced maybe, and her liver was orange. I couldn't find anything else wrong. She was 29 weeks old.

    Anyone know what this is? Is it contagious? Should we not eat our turkey? We went ahead and processed him and all his insides looked normal.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2016
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Your chicken could have had fatty liver hemorrhagic disease, but a necropsy by your state vet might be the best thing to know for sure. It can be common in heavy chickens, and the liver sometimes may look like a putty color. Bleeding can be common. Another condition that can cause bloody mucus coming from the beak is ILT, a respiratory disease. Sorry for your loss.
     
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    There should be an enlarged liver surrounded by fat in fatty liver disease. The liver can be putty colored or yellow, but may not always be. A pale comb and a decrease in laying may also be signs.
     
  4. Jayzandra

    Jayzandra Chillin' With My Peeps

    She was perfectly fine until the blood exploded out of her mouth and there was no fat on the liver and it didn't seem abnormally large, it was just a really orange color. She wasn't just coughing up blood, she was drowning on it there was so much.
    We live in NW Arizona. Is it possible she might have been bitten by something or ate something?
    Like maybe one of our neighbors put out mouse poison or something and she ate a poisoned mouse? Is that possible?
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Rat poison might be a problem that would cause severe hemorrhaging. I'm not sure that it would cause the orange liver. I'm not a vet, so it might help to keep posting on this thread, updating it throughout the weekend, for others to help. Contacting someone at a poultry center, perhaps in California might give some insight. Unfortunately since it is a weekend, you might not get an answer until Monady or later. Here are 2 good threads with information on poultry labs in California that perform necropsies:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/799747/how-to-send-a-bird-for-a-necropsy-pictures
    http://www.metzerfarms.com/PoultryLabs.cfm
     
  6. Jayzandra

    Jayzandra Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you
     

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