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#108638 - 02/23/13 06:16 AM sick hen - listless, quick boost?
newchick Offline
New Egg

Registered: 02/23/13
Posts: 7
Loc: Nova Scotia
Hi, this is my 1st post - we've 7 pullets, started laying about 3 weeks a go but one has yet to start (a wyandotte). This wyandotte is now standing in the corner, quite listless, not eating. We're going to isolate her in a smaller cage within the coop and want to give her... something that might help, any suggestions? I thought maybe warm water and some sugar or honey? The others seem fine and are outside eating scratch tossed to them (cold today though). I turned on the heat lamp in the stall in case that might give her some comfort. I regularly put apple cider vinegar in their water and also feed a mix of garlic, flax seeds, fennel, diatomaceous earth, along with their layers pellets, a couple of times a week (which they love) and warm oatmeal in the mornings when it's cold. I've not wormed the birds, haven't seen any signs of worms and it's winter so the ground is frozen (they've never been on unfrozen ground). Thanks for any advice!

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#108639 - 02/23/13 06:21 AM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: newchick]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3751
Loc: Denmark
Have you checked the crop for compaction? Does it have an egg in the vent? What does the poop look like?
I have recently read, that feeding garlic to chickens can lead to anemia.

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#108641 - 02/23/13 06:35 AM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: newchick]
newchick Offline
New Egg

Registered: 02/23/13
Posts: 7
Loc: Nova Scotia
Oh - her comb is also very pale! If she needs wormer is it OK to give if she's ill and what kind would you suggest? Also - not entirely certain it's this wyandotte that's not been laying but it's either her or her sister so a good chance. If she's egg bound, what signs can we look for? Thanks again!

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#108642 - 02/23/13 06:37 AM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: newchick]
newchick Offline
New Egg

Registered: 02/23/13
Posts: 7
Loc: Nova Scotia
Her comb is pale, and has been for a while, which I guess means anemia - whether worm induced or not.. Will have a look for crop impaction and her vent - report back shortly! Thanks

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#108644 - 02/23/13 06:53 AM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: newchick]
newchick Offline
New Egg

Registered: 02/23/13
Posts: 7
Loc: Nova Scotia
Thanks so much for the quick reply. Well, now I feel silly - she seems much better. Is no longer squat in the corner and on inspection her comb isn't even that pale. She's moving around and has some life in her. Her crop isn't impacted and her vent looks good. I'm going to cook up some warming oatmeal for them all. Would you suggest anything else to give them a little boost? I'm thinking maybe I'll soon worm them, what with the weather hopefully soon warming - any suggestions on product? We try to be as natural as possible. Interesting about the garlic.. so hard to know.

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#108648 - 02/23/13 09:08 AM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: newchick]
CJR Online   content
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8483
Loc: Montana
Worming is a form of poisoning, important to do, if they have them in a heavy load, but must be done carefully. I have not wormed my birds for years--don't think I have a single one that was ever wormed. I live in the northern area, as well, and keep dry "clean" pens and in summer, grassy runs that are mowed regularly, have never seen a sign of worms in dropping, and have not felt that a fecal exam was necessary. Would do so before worming my birds. Probably all birds carry them with no harm. Most Wormer products will warn not to eat their eggs for a period of time, but didn't bother me. In warmer climates, it may be a necessity, regularly, but with frozen ground a part of the year, I have never felt the birds are threatened. Not to worry, Good luck, CJR

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#108651 - 02/23/13 02:59 PM Re: sick hen - listless, quick boost? [Re: CJR]
Maria Ricardo Offline
Past Moderator
Coop Keeper

Registered: 03/26/05
Posts: 434
Loc: Hawaii
I'm glad to hear your hen looks better. Some birds are affected by the cold more than others. Maybe the heat lamp helped; be careful about fire!

If you think it's worms, first get a fecal sample examined by a vet. Like CJR said, the worming medicine is a form of poison.

For a "little boost" try cod liver oil. One drop on a piece of bread. Warm water with honey is good too.

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