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#99853 - 10/31/11 12:39 PM Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice!
Shepz3 Offline
New Egg

Registered: 10/31/11
Posts: 3
Loc: Utah
So this is the first time I have had a sick chicken, so I am kind of scrambling to figure out what to do.

I have 2 year old Buff Orpington hen, she is a pretty big girl, always been bigger then her scrawny sister. Yesterday morning we realized that she was walking funny - kind of gingerly, slowly, and her balance was off. She was laying down a lot too. We thought maybe she had eaten something because they had been out all day in the yard saturday. We waited most of the day to see if she would get better, and then I discovered that she had a very swollen under-area (area on her backside, under her vent to behind her legs). It was swollen, red, and she had been plucking off feathers in that area. Compared to her sister's area it is NOT normal. We realized that she had not laid an egg - she is usually very regular (today is day 3 of her not laying any eggs). So we were thinking - egg bound. Yesterday we did the recommended warm water soak, gave her some crushed up calcium and aspirin, and set her up in a nice little nesting box for the night. She drank some water during the bath, but nothing after. We gave her the medicine soaked in oats, and she ate those, and played around with some scratch I gave her. Her balance became much worse - she topples forward when you put her down - and will fall over if you are not careful. She did not poop at all from about... 5pm on.

I didn't expect her to make it through the night. But she did.

So today I tried another warm bath, and also went exploring with some oiled fingers (didn't feel anything). She was pretty lethargic, just sitting there, and was panting a little bit. I offered her some scratch, which she pecked at a bit, but she wouldn't drink, and I gave her some more meds with oats - she ate those but didnt eat plain ones I offered her. I ripped up some lettuce and she ate a couple little pieces. When I took her out of her nesting box she made a huge poop, and another one later.

Thinking this was the end, I took her out to her run to spend some time with her sister in the sun. When she got out there she immediately tumbled out and began wobbling around after her sister. She has been outside for about... 2 hours? And she is doing better then when she was inside. Her balance is still horrible, but at least she is tottering around. She lays down a bunch, and I think she has been pecking around, eating a bit. I just checked her swollen-ness and it is still the same, just not red - it is a normal pink now, so she hasn't been irritating it.

When I feel the swollen area (I am not pushing too hard because I don't want to hurt her or break anything) I don't feel anything hard. It's not like... liquid. When I was doing this she was clucking a bit and I could feel her muscles contracting... Not much to report.

SO! Do you think it is eggbound? EYP? or something else? Any thoughts? Any recommended treatments? I need advice because I do not want her to suffer. What I have been doing has not resulted in anything, and I don't want to prolong it. We arranged to have a friend come over and kill her tonight if she hasn't improved. Should I hold off?

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#99856 - 10/31/11 01:46 PM Re: Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice! [Re: Shepz3]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3769
Loc: Denmark
I cannot find any clear statement: Have you put your finger into the vent to actually check if there is an egg inside ? If there is no egg , she is not eggbound. A hen can go with an unlaid egg for a very long time without any symptoms at all.

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#99857 - 10/31/11 01:51 PM Re: Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice! [Re: Wieslaw]
Shepz3 Offline
New Egg

Registered: 10/31/11
Posts: 3
Loc: Utah
Yes I have put my finger in, but I am not sure I was in the right... duct? I didn't feel anything and she expelled gas and then pooped on me. Can you tell me how to properly do this?

I have heard that you may not be able to feel the egg. If it is not eggbound, then do you have any suggestion of what it may be?

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#99858 - 10/31/11 02:05 PM Re: Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice! [Re: Shepz3]
Wieslaw Offline
Moderator
Classroom Professor

Registered: 09/18/09
Posts: 3769
Loc: Denmark
If there is a mature egg with a shell, you cannot miss it,no matter how deep it is. You put your finger gently slightly slantly down, do not push anything. If the hen does not 'say' anything you cannot hurt her. If the egg is very deep inside, you cannot do anything. If the egg feels soft, she is not eggbound either. Do you have snakes where you are?

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#99859 - 10/31/11 02:46 PM Re: Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice! [Re: Wieslaw]
Shepz3 Offline
New Egg

Registered: 10/31/11
Posts: 3
Loc: Utah
Originally Posted By: Wieslaw
If there is a mature egg with a shell, you cannot miss it,no matter how deep it is. You put your finger gently slightly slantly down, do not push anything. If the hen does not 'say' anything you cannot hurt her. If the egg is very deep inside, you cannot do anything. If the egg feels soft, she is not eggbound either. Do you have snakes where you are?


Good to know. I will have to check again. Nope, no snakes.

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#99864 - 10/31/11 04:19 PM Re: Is Hen Eggbound? Need Advice! [Re: Shepz3]
CJR Online   content
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8489
Loc: Montana
SOFT SHELLED EGG gives same symtoms and can be worse, as if it breaks inside, she will likely not survive. Eating and drinking is good news. Watch for the soft shell on the ground--other birds will eat the egg, but the shell will be left,folded and a bit opaque.
Similar symtoms are for an "internal" egg, that is, instead of going down the canal to the nest, something called reverse peristalsis takes place and moves the egg back up the oviduct and it drops INSIDE the body cavity. No way to get it out! It can possibly be absorbed?? Chicken Health Book just says, no treatment, but not the eventual outcome?? Soft shelled eggs are often from older hens--and over many years I have experienced both death and recovery. Good luck, CJR

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