Whats wrong with my girl?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by fluffyxx, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. fluffyxx

    fluffyxx Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 11, 2012
    Okay, I have one girl who I had to pull out from my others tonight because she was being picked on pretty badly.

    Let me try to explain in the best way I can. For a while now, she has had a pale comb. It is really light in color & it flops over, like it isn't perky like the other girls. I had figured that was due to lice, as I had some creepy crawlies in my chicken coop. Treated everyone for lice & its been about 3 weeks-ish and so far no more bugs. This girl still has the pale comb. Here lately I've noticed that she doesn't seem to be keeping her balance as well. Like I have a little step up to get into and out of the coop & some of them will hop up on there to see what I'm bringing them for the day. She done this one day and fell backwards. The last few days I've noticed that if she gets bumped and isn't expecting it, she will have to sort of catch her balance, or re-steady herself with her wings. She is also holding her wings down a bit all the time, like as if to keep her balance.

    Tonight when I went to do my feeding. I always lock the girls out in the yard with some food that I toss on the ground for them. While I was in the coop I heard the most awful racket, I ran outside and there was my pitiful little hen, laying on the ground with 2 of the other girls on top of her, pecking her at her head and neck. Needless to say, I scooped her up and she is now in the basement in her own little enclosure.

    Other random info... she is still eating and drinking just fine. Is still interested in her food & water and can pretty much get around just fine. Just a few stumbles here and there. I'm honestly not sure what her poops look like. But, I haven't noticed any "weird" poops around the coop. So, I can assume her poops are okay. I'll know more about that tomorrow when I go back to my parents to check on her. She is still interested in picking around in the grass and is the first one to greet me for treats.

    I'm trying to get some info as to what this could be? And what I can do to help her out?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    It sounds like she could be suffering from insecticide poisoning, not enough to kill her, but enough to make her sick. Could she have possibly drunk water from a drip tray from a potted plant that had been sprayed for bugs? Insecticides affect the central nervous system and make the victim lose coordination, balance, and would account for the pale, listless comb, too.

    You need to do some serious investigation of her environment to see if this could be the cause because the others are liable to find this poisonous source sooner or later, and then you could have a real tragedy on your hands.

    This is just a stab in the dark. I had a hen who got into some insecticide, and before she died, she was having trouble with her balance. There could be any number of other reasons for your girl's troubles, though, so don't stop looking for it.

    You did the right thing by removing her from the flock. They sometimes will attack a chicken who is sick or injured or different in some way. It's just their way.
     
  3. fluffyxx

    fluffyxx Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 11, 2012
    There haven't been any insecticides near the girls, at least none that I am aware of. They don't free range, they have a fenced in yard they come out into during the day, their coop is actually down away from the house, its sort of smack dab in the middle of our woods.
    The pale comb has been going on for about 2 months now? Something along those lines. The wonky balance is a new thing. Day before yesterday I was really worried about her, as she just wanted to keep herself all fluffed up and kept sleeping.. but, then I took her in the front yard to let her eat some bugs, and she seemed okay, which made me feel a little better. She actually tried to scratch at the ground once, and knocked herself off balance. [​IMG] Cute for her to try, but it made me sad for her at the same time.

    Yesterday when I went to check on her, she actually seemed to be moving a lot better & a little more quickly. Still a little stumbly but, not near as bad. She was also making more chicken sounds last night & dove right into her food when I gave it to her, she even followed me over to the chicken feed bag to pick up the crumbs I would drop. [​IMG]

    However, I'm still looking for some explanation? Or some suggestions as to what I can do to help her.
    Also, should I give her a stuffed animal to have as a friend? She doesn't seem to miss the other chickens, I wouldn't either if I was her. Haha.
    But, when I go down there she follows me around, and when I let her out in the yard she will follow me where ever I go. Once I put her in her cage she will like pace the front of the cage matching where I'm going. It makes me feel bad. Should I give her a cuddle buddy? Or is that silly? [​IMG]
     
  4. fluffyxx

    fluffyxx Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 11, 2012
    Okay, so she now is not as stumbly as before. She still does seem a bit wobbly. But, definitely much better than before. When I let her out of the chicken hospital cage she is in, she flaps her wings and will run around. She used to not even attempt that. She is digging at her food bowl now, without toppling over. Her comb isn't as flopped over, it is just a little tiny bit at the top. But, certainly improved. She tried to hop up on the cage door the other day, and I'm not sure if she just decided it was too high for her, or if she couldn't do it. But, overall.. she is definitely improved. I'm still afraid to put her back in the coop. As I'm not sure what happened to her? Could she have just been at the bottom of the pecking order and just been too stressed out? How would I go about re-introducing her in the coop? I don't have a way to put her down there without them having contact with her. Like I can't fence part of their run off so that they can just see each other. I also want to add that she has never laid an egg. Well at least not that I can recall. Don't know if that could be related. But, just wanted to toss that info in as well.
     

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