Chicken feeling bad

by Andy Hiller
(US)

Question

Chicken feeling bad:

1. Breed of chicken

Americauana

2. How old is the chicken
1 yr

3. List all symptoms
Limping
Lethargy
Loose white poop with green bits that look like vegetables
Does not move much
Pale headpiece

4. Is it a hen or rooster
Hen

5. How long has the bird had these symptoms
Five days

6. What type of feed are you using
Organic layer pellet and free range

7. Types of medications
Vet gave her steroids, b vitamin and Terramycin

8. How many chickens are in the flock
Four

9. Have new chickens been introduced recently
No

10. Free range or kept in pen
Usually free ranged every day for two hours but not the day that symptoms began.

Occasional house scraps. The day that symptoms began, I gave her a worm and she ran around the run keeping it from the other ladies before running into the coop and eating it.

That night she began limping again and hasn't shown any improvements.

11. Include pictures if possible
Tell me where to email them please

12. Any other pertinent information that could help us help you diagnose your chicken's health issues.

She was injured in the leg six weeks ago by a dog, but recovered fully. Started laying again after two weeks.

I built a new enclosure from which they cannot possibly escape, but before moving the flock into it, she started limping again and laying down all day. I moved her into a cool garage in a large wood box, and she seems to drink a lot, but eat very little.

Poop is white creamy consistency with green strands. Her headpiece is pale. If she doesn't get better in the next couple of days, I will cull her, but she is such a sweet bird and I'd like to help her if I can. Her crop seems hard, but is not very big.

The vet was not very helpful, and I would greatly appreciate any help you might give.

Answer
When ever you feed antibiotics, this can upset the good balance of beneficial digestive bacteria. If her crop is hard, it is probably impacted, possibly soured.

Feeding her a mix of cider vinegar and water (1/2 cu water to 1 tblsp vinegar) with an eye dropper, if she won't drink on her own, can help break down the crop contents.

After she drinks liquid, gently massage the crop to a mushy consistency. If crop contents smell rotten, you will need to hold her upside down by the legs and milk crop contents out of her mouth.

Continue to offer vinegar water and soak her feed with it, to make sure she can digest easily.

Giving Pro-biotics or some live culture yogurt may help restore good digestive bacteria. Offering some fresh greens and apple, can help with digestion as well.

It's unclear why she would have a relapse from the original injury. Giving 25 mg aspirin per lb of body weight per day may make her more comfortable.

Keeping her secluded from the flock until she is acting normally again will help her recover more quickly, if possible.

Sometimes the stress of an injury can cause the immune system to weaken. Her symptoms could be a sign of disease.

Giving vitamins and electrolytes can help with immune strength and over-all well-being, that could speed her recovery.

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