When is time to worry?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BackAcre, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. BackAcre

    BackAcre Chirping

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    I have a 1.5yo light Sussex hen who typically lays about 5 times weekly. I noticed yesterday that she squatted in unusual places a handful of times, and she did not lay yesterday. Otherwise she is eating, drinking, walking around "chattering" scratching around being a normal chicken. No feeling of an egg nest her vent or in her abdomen. I took her in last night and did an epsome soak blow dry, and she ate quite a few egg shells and drank some electrolytes. Went to roost on the nest box ledge of in the dog kennel she stayed in. Since she was still completely fine today, I out her back out with the flock where she is more comfortable. She did sit in the nest box once unproductively, but otherwise I haven't seen her squatting. Because I am hypervigilant right now, I have noticed her vent is contracting anytime I check. I have access to a vet, but because she is 99% herself, I feel like I have nothing to tell them. Is it too soon to panic about her being egg bound or am I veering off in the wrong direction?
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Then she's most likely fine.
    An egg bound hen will not be doing the normal eating/drinking/chattering.

    If you are really concerned......
    I'd isolate bird in a wire cage within the coop for a day or two....so you can closely monitor their intake of food and water, crop function(checking at night and in morning before providing more feed), and their poops. Feel their abdomen, from below vent to between legs, for squishy or hard swelling.

    Best to put crate right in coop or run so bird is still 'with' the flock.
    I like to use a fold-able wire dog crate (24"L x 18"W x 21"H) with smaller mesh(1x2) on bottom of crate under tray.
    Then you can put tray underneath crate to better observe droppings without it being stepped in. If smaller mesh is carefully installed, tray can still be used inside crate.
     
    sourland likes this.
  3. MissChick@dee

    [email protected] ~ Dreaming Of Springtime ~

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    This may sound weird but when my hens (first come into lay) and they show the same behavior I give them TUMS. I chop a grape I breakup the tums and stuff it inside. There is liquid calcium you could by or some people sprinkle Tums on a treat but find a nice quarter of a tab does the trick. Simple to try. It won’t hurt her. I don’t know where your located could this simply be related to winter?
    I think @aart had good advice. You might want to make sure she’s not constipated.
     
  4. BackAcre

    BackAcre Chirping

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    Thanks for your advice - just hearing someone else say she sounds normal is a help! I debated yesterday if she was just fluffing and squatting due to the extreme colds/highs we have been having (yesterday was -27C windchill, today it went above 0C and is currently raining!), but was also taking into account that her water intake has likely been slightly less recently as even the heated bowls were freezing over by times and needing to be broken. I have also been giving extra protein treats to help combat the crazy cold and keep some weight on them, so those 2 things also make me suspicious of egg trouble. However, as I said, she doesn't lay daily, so this is not abnormal, just being hypervigilant! I checked her half a dozen times yesterday and again today - normal droppings, crop is full, still the first one to meet me at the door, flies herself up to roost without a second thought, so she seems ok, but if something is brewing I want to head it off EARLY!!
     
    Wyorp Rock likes this.
  5. BackAcre

    BackAcre Chirping

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    Tums is a good idea!! I have easy access to a vet, and have been debating yesterday and today if I should give her a calcium injection just to be safe, but the amount of egg shells she has eaten put my mind at ease for added calcium, thankfully.
     
  6. MissChick@dee

    [email protected] ~ Dreaming Of Springtime ~

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    Well it’s winter and most hens stop or slow down. It’s good to be vigilant. So many people regret when they aren’t. Best wishes
     

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