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#86032 - 12/06/06 08:21 AM Hen w/ Prolasped Anus

I have a large dear RHR hen, Rosemary, that I found this morning with what I believe is a prolasped anus. Basically, her inards are hanging out of her vent.

I say prolasped anus because that's all I could find in my Chicken Health Book. I have read about this somewhere on these boards before but don't find anything when I type in prolasped anus. Can someone help me?

I removed Rosemary from the pen - she was lying down in the sand but alert and the other hens were not bothering her; there are no pecking injuries.

I washed her "inards" as best I could (sand) but was not able to push them back in, as I have read that others have done before. There is just too much there. She was always a large hen with a huge sack hanging from her rear for years, never seemed to bother her. She is 4 years old now. She never ate more than the others but was always a big girl. The book says this problem is typical for overweight hens.

I moved her to the bathtub with towels for warmth and comfort and applied preparation H as the book says, but I just don't know what to do. She is tired but alert still. I guess I know the final outcome but I feel so helpless, she has like 3 eggfuls of stuff hanging out and the vent is sooo tight.

#86033 - 12/06/06 03:37 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
13Blackbirds Offline

Registered: 06/16/05
Posts: 74
Loc: Georgia
I don't know if this will help or not.
A few years ago we purchased a silkie hen from a "bad" breeder. We picked the hen up in the dark and didn't realize until the next day that she had a problem very similar to the one you describe. Except in this case everything outside the vent had dried. There were pieces of an egg where she had laid (or tried to lay) as well as a lot of extra flesh. We washed and washed and washed. We used Vaseline, we used Hydrogen Peroxide, we used lots of warm water. It took a long time (days maybe) to clean all the goop off and even after that we still had parts hanging out. It was not nearly as much as you seem to have. We never tried to put anything back in, we just kept things as clean as possible.
Of course this was a young hen, but eventually everything worked itself out. She has never laid very well but she has been happy and healthy ever since.
Best of luck to you!

#86034 - 12/07/06 04:33 AM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Jocelyn Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 1467
Loc: Canada
You can try washing and the putting lots of honey on it. Honey is slightly antiseptic and the sugars in it will shrink the tissue so that it may go back i. You will need to wash and apply the honey twice a day. It could take a week or so.

#86035 - 12/07/06 03:18 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Sandy C. Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 04/01/04
Posts: 278
Loc: Australia
Prolapse Information and Treatment

When a hen lays an egg the lower part of the oviduct is momentarily everted through the cloaca. Normally the hen can retract the oviduct after laying.

A prolapse occurs when the hen cannot retract it and a part of the oviduct remains outside the body
Causes can be:

1. Being too fat
2. Older hens
3. And in early laying pullets with low bodyweight
4. Eating feed that has too high an energy level
5. Or a fright can cause the hens’ oviduct to prolapse
6. When the hen ruptures the muscle in her vent while laying and egg.
7. Obesity (excess fat)
8. Early sexual maturity contribute to this condition
9. Common causes of early sexual maturity are increasing day lengths during the growing period, obesity and switching to the laying ration too early

A mass of tissue, often bloody and dirty, can be seen protruding through the vent
This is a real blow when it occurs, because it is often the best layers that are affected

Fortunately, it is not very common
Prolapse is difficult to cure because the hen continues to lay, and forces the organs out again after they have been replaced

A prolapse attracts the other birds to cannibalism, pen mates seeing the blood usually pick the bird to death.

Debeaking or pick guards will reduce picking, but will not remove the underlying cause.

To prevent obesity in pullets, monitor their body weight and condition.

Restrict their energy intake if they are putting on too much fat.

First line of defence – Treatment:

Chickens that show signs of prolapse can be helped by preventing them laying. However, if there is any small prolapse gently push it back into the chicken with your fingers (if you have any creams for piles or haemoroids use it, it may help to reduce the swelling). The chicken should then be put on a maintenance diet of wheat and water and put in a dark cage. Leave the hen there for a week.

In severe prolapse a purse suture and maintenance diet with the chicken kept in the dark, as above, works well. However, it is important to restrict the chickens diet to maintenance only for possibly a couple of months.
This does work!!
Alternative to maintenance diet is feeding the chicken enough to keep it alive, moving and keeping warm plus enough extra feed for it to produce eggs.

You may find that by reducing the feed it brings on a forced molt

By reducing feed intake so that the bird has just enough feed to keep it alive, moving and keeping warm you are feeding for maintenance only. The chicken will not lay eggs and so give it the best chance of recovery.

You can try to push the prolapse organs back in, very carefully
First, remove the hen immediately from the flock to prevent cannibalism
Clean the prolapse organ
Which will have become dirty
Use warm water and a very mild soap
Smear with a lubricating jelly like Vaseline (or haemoroid cream) and very gently push the prolapsed organs back into the body cavity

Isolating the bird and reduce the feed to try and stop her laying
She more than likely she has another egg already moving down the oviduct
The next egg laid could cause another prolapse

Helping to prevent further damage when a hen is prolapsed
1. Reducing swelling and allowing the muscles to contract
2. Preventing a yeast infection
3. Preventing them laying
4. If there is any small prolapse gently push it back into the chicken with your fingers
5. Put the hen on a maintenance diet of wheat and water
6. Put in a dark cage to stop the laying cycle (5 days to 2 months (severe case))
7. In severe prolapse a purse suture may be need to the cloaca

Wash area with sterile water and using preparation-H (this is an ointment used for humans who have piles or hemaroids)
Coat the extended portion in and around the vent area.
Preparation -H reduces the swelling tissue and thus allows the tissue to recede.

If the bird is left in this condition, the other birds will peck at her, and she will become infected and fly blown, die from loss of blood or blood poisoning
You should cull the bird immediately if this happens

A prolapse is not a disease and the bird can still be eaten

Fly blown hens

Sometimes when a chicken has a prolapse or has been hurt they are fly blown before you get to see them

1. Put on disposable rubber gloves
2. Isolate the bird
3. Wash the area well with an antibacterial soap or baby shampoo… rinse well… put some white or brown vinegar in the final rinse water, you don’t need much, the vinegar removes all traces of soap on the skin and neutralizes any harmful ingredients that may be in the soap … vinegar is also a great disinfectant
4. You may find the skin in and around the vent has been damaged … check this while you are washing the bird
5. Dry the bird with towels, use a hair drying on low (not too close you will burn her skin), and make sure you have a warm area to place the chicken. No drafts, if you have a heating pad to put the bird on the dry off this would be excellent, if not dry as much as you can with the hair dryer fluffing the feathers up as you do it
6. Do a final clean with warm water and betadine (iodine)
7. Fill the holes with pure honey… it has excellent healing properties and is an natural antibiotic … you will find any maggots that are inside the bird will back out
8. Treat the damaged area with Neosporin (antibiotic powder) … you may decided to pass on this if you use the honey method
9. Spray the area once cleaned with screw worm & ear tick spray repellent used on sheep
10. Put some ‘purple cote’ or ‘blue cote’ to stop the flies from blowing in the area again
11. Keep the bird isolated until it has completely healed and also making it easier for you to watch the area and treat if necessary
12. Feeding to heal…. 1 cup of dry mash, 2 cups of buttermilk, 1 tablespoon of yoghurt, mix well… the bird can drink the yoghurt mash mixture… restores the good bacteria in the gut… also feed its normal rations if it finishes this…
13. You may find the droppings become a bit wetter than normal. So make sure you keep the cage or isolation area really clean
14. Watering to heal - 2 litres of water, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar… don’t use the apple cider vinegar if you are going to use antibiotics the two clash and cancel each other out… make this the only source of water available for 5 days…. Helps to cut through any mucus that may have built up inside the bird due to low immunity from the maggot attack

#86036 - 12/07/06 03:26 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Sandy C. Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 04/01/04
Posts: 278
Loc: Australia
Soft shell egg and Prolapsed hen Treatment

liquid calcium.........

Sometimes you may find if the hens has prolapsed due to laying soft shelled eggs this helps them

The hen should drop the egg within about 16 hours, and the prolapse should receed within 24 hours.
(2 cc's dose) will help bring on contractions.

There could be other complications if the egg inside the hen is stuck and also if it has broken inside the bird

foy's pigeonsupplies has "calcium gluconate" , I am not sure of the dosage

It is best to then force molt the hen.

Keep hen in shortened light, also reduce feed intake, this will give the internal organs time to heal before laying recommences, if the hen continues to lay this problem may very well re occur

Warning: Black sunflower seeds... if you are feeding these to your bird.. they may cause calcium deficiency

#86037 - 12/08/06 09:04 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Blue Lace Offline

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 45
Loc: California
Chickenut, I had a problem like that earlier this year, however, it was not such a large prolapse as you describe. I tried the preparation H method and it just didn't seem to work. On the advice of my kid's 4-H project leader (leader in poultry) I applied white granulated sugar to the prolapse. It worked wonders! Only a day or two at the most and she was finally staying back inside. Just keep her warm and fed and keep applying the sugar. I know it sounds crazy but it really works.

#86038 - 12/09/06 05:36 AM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Jocelyn Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/02
Posts: 1467
Loc: Canada
Yes, sugar works, its high osmotic pressure draws the fluids out of the swollen tissue and makes it smaller so it stays inside. That's why I suggested the honey...same thing plus it's antiseptic. As for liquid's also called "milk" and most households have some. Just give her a little in a bottle cap, a teaspoon or two, and it will help if she's low in calcium. Most hens like milk and will drink it readily. If she's NOT low in calcium, it will do no harm.

#86039 - 12/09/06 12:38 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus

Thank you all so much for your responses.

Rosemary died sometime during the day. I don't think she lived long after it first prolapsed because it was still very moist when I found her and none of the other 14 hens or rooster had pecked her yet.

Still, the information you all posted will be available to the next person who searches now, so all is not lost.

Her daily meal was Lyena laying ration and about 3/4 c scratch (w/seed) shared between the 15 hens and roo. Treats were lettuce, grass, and on special ocasions, like when molting, I give them some wet pond fish food.

Anyway, I am wondering about the maintenance feeding SC mentions, such as wheat. Do you mean wheat flour that is available at the grocery store? I have that. Or is this some other form of wheat that I would find primarily at a feed store? Also, is this forced feeding? Rosemary wouldn't drink much less eat (I dipped her beak in the water, tried to put some in her beak with my finger, etc.). I thought I'd read here before that forced feeding (food or liquid)is dangerous, sends the food to the wrong area, doesn't "digest" correctly, or something like that???? If I'm not remembering correctly, what is the best way to do this and in what quantity?

Will non-fat flavored yogurt work okay?

Again, thank you all for all your advise, the info is also helpful to me for other conditions that may happen sooner or later (who knew you could use honey and granulated sugar on organs?!?!?)

#86040 - 12/09/06 02:40 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus
Sandy C. Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 04/01/04
Posts: 278
Loc: Australia
I am so sorry you lost your little hen, sometimes blood poisoning occurs when this happens...

Also if she was also egg bound then the pain would have been terrible for her ...

Maintenance diet... is when you only feed whole gains to the birds .. but much less than you normally feed to push them into a molt or stop them from laying for some reason

No not wheat flour.. whole grains... found at feed stores

Forced feeding is only when you know for sure that the birds is digesting food in its crop.. never feed a bird with a rock hard crop..

Your bird was in pain.. so eating wasn't her problem.. when your force feed a chicken this is how you would do it .. its easy .. a bit messy maybe but easy

Make up a small amount of rolled oats.. some honey .. just a drizzle.. boiled egg yolk.. crumbled into mixture.. not the egg white... give that to the other birds

make this into a small pellet size.. same size as the layer pellets they normall eat

Put them onto a dish

Get the hen or rooster... wrap a towl around the wings... sit it on your knee..

Holding the back of the head with the palm.. and fingers the beak.. open beak..

Make sure neck is straight not kinked..

Pop the pellet into the mouth pushing to the back of the throat but not down the throat...

while neck is still streched .. gently massage in a downward motion to get the pellet down into the crop.. do about 3 of these .. then let the birds head go.. and allow it to rest ...

Feed this until you feel the crop is 1/4 full.. never over fill it ..

If the bird isn't drinking.. put drops onto the beak.. they will go into the mouth and the bird will swollow...

Put the bird someplace quiet for 2 hours..

After this time.. feel the crop.. if the contents has not reduced.. DO NOT FEED ANY MORE .. if the contents has reduced.. try the bird to see if it will eat on its own and drink.. if not feed again by force feeding...

Make sure the vent area is clear and clean...

NEVER POUR WATER OR FOOD INTO A BIRD MOUTH.. your quite right it will go down the wind pipe and end up killing the bird or drowing it

You can make up a crop tube.. but you need to put this into the crop for it to work.. force feeding this way eliminates any mistakes like putting it down the wrong area..

No you can't use Non fat flavored yoghurt...

You mustn't feed any sugars to the bird.. it will cause a crop problem.. yeast infections flare up when they are sickly.. and sugars make this happen a lot faster than anything else

You need to get a yoghurt that has

NOT VANILLA ... it has sugar in it

You need to get the yoghurt you can buy that has the active ingredient in it .. its plain and dull and boring to us... I personaly love to eat the Vanilla one .. but its not the one you need for a sick bird

Natural rememdies are excellent.. especially for the back yarder chicken owner.. we don't have access to loads medications etc.. even some of the prices rock my world to pieces

So anything natural.. or can be made up from what I have in my cupboard in the kitchen.. I think is fantastic..

#86041 - 12/11/06 01:39 PM Re: Hen w/ Prolasped Anus

Thank you sc. I have printed this out and put in my chicken health book for future quick reference!!!


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