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Very sudden sick hen

Hi all,
I noticed 1 of my hens was very off form yesterday afternoon: sitting on her own, unresponsive, her normal blood red comb had darkened and her vent was dirty and sticky looking. I added cider vinegar to their water and left them alone in their coop for the night.
This morning she had weakened further so I removed her fron the rest and have left her in her own box under a heat lamp. While I was handling her to move her she was vomiting which is very worrying. I'm not very hopeful of her recovering.
Would anyone have any advice on what these symptoms could be pointing at? And is there something I can give the others to protect them?

Thanks for reading,
James & Nellie

James and Nellie
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Had she access to rat poison.

paddycrawford
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Hi Paddy,
No she did not

James and Nellie
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Sounds like poisoning.

paddycrawford
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

What does her crop look like, could be sour or impacted crop.
If you type sour, impacted crop into the search bar top right corner of the main page there's plenty of advice on treatment there.

nama-man
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

Darkening comb sometimes with a purple tinge usually means nitrate poisoning The wattels may darken as well.If this is the case seek the help of a vet immediately or she will die. she could have picked up snail pellets fertilizer antifreeze ect..You would not believe the amount of everyday items that people leave lying around without realizing they are harmful to pets. Nitrates are even used to preserve foods.This is why processed meats have such long use by dates and why bacon is so pink.

roostercroweburn
Thursday, August 6th, 2020

Nama-man,
Your prognosis was exactly right. After reading them posts I'm 99.99% certain it was sour crop. After getting home from night shift I handled her and she had all the symptoms. I massaged her as best I could and got most of the fluid out. However, unfortunately when I returned hours later she had died.
I have only recently gotten these birds, is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening again? Also is there any recommended dosing that I should give these birds?

James and Nellie
Friday, August 7th, 2020

One of the main causes I found was access to long straggly, wiry grass, they can't digest it and it impacts in the crop blocking it.
Not too many treats, if no access to free-range then hang up a head of cabbage in the run or cut up dandelions and young dock leaves, this will help them produce good rich orange yolk and of course plenty of clean fresh water.
Pellets and a scatter feed of whole wheat am and pm are the basics they need.

nama-man
Friday, August 7th, 2020


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