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Help! Chicken falling asleep standing up, doing very little. Very out of character.

(12 Posts)
sylvev Tue 15-Jul-08 19:16:41

One of our chickens is acting oddly. She is falling asleep constantly when standing up. She is eating a little bit, laid an egg this morning, but is definitely not herself. Crop and vent seem fine, no sneezes/coughs. She was the most active chicken, slowed down yesterday and spent most of today asleep. Any ideas and what would you do? It would be DD's chicken wouldn't it?

tortoiseSHELL Tue 15-Jul-08 22:24:33

Hi sylvev - is she drinking and eating normally? What are her poos like? How about her eyes? Any bubbles or anything? Anything else out of the ordinary?

When mine are looking a bit under the weather I make up a special 'pick me up' food - beef in jelly cat food, hardboiled eggs, poultry spice, you can also add honey to give them energy.

Hope she's looking better in the morning. If not, you might want to bring her into the house to keep more of an eye on her.

sylvev Tue 15-Jul-08 22:51:58

Thanks Tortoiseshell. She is eating and drinking ok, ran as usual for mealworms! Eyes, comb, crop, vent all seem ok. Checked for red mite, re-applied powder. She tucked herself into the house with the others at about 8pm and we'll check in the morning. I've got some poultry spice so will give tomorrow. Just seems really sleepy sad. Thanks for your thoughts.

tortoiseSHELL Wed 16-Jul-08 09:17:01

How is she this morning?

Callisto Wed 16-Jul-08 09:54:02

My Barbu cockerel sleeps all of the time, but this is normal for him. If it is out of character then it is a bit worrying. Tortoise's suggestion is good - you can also try poultry tonic which is available from countrywide stores and the like. You add it to the water.

The only other thing is she might be going broody (though it doesn't sound like it). If she fluffs up her feathers when you approach her it can be a sign.

sylvev Wed 16-Jul-08 13:23:55

Still very sleepy, standing in the run asleep! Will wake if we approach. Eating & drinking very little, (her poo-pile under her roosting spot in the house was much smaller than the others, though normal in other ways).

Will still come running if the mealworm tub is shaken though smile

She doesn't seem to be in pain, just tired! I hadn't thought about broodyness, but wouldn't she try to stay in the nesting box rather than standing up?

I put some tonic in the water this morning and DH will check her this afternoon and maybe phone vet. I had to work today so don't know if she's laid an egg. She has been laying 1 a day so far since we got her 10 days ago.

I feel like a new mum all over again, looking up symptoms, seeking reassurance....I'll keep you posted and thanks for your suggestions.

tortoiseSHELL Wed 16-Jul-08 13:54:44

Doesn't really sound like broodiness tbh. Make sure she gets some good protein inside her, and keep an eye on her!

sylvev Thu 17-Jul-08 07:40:21

Up-date! DH took her to vets, they gave an injection of anti-biotics and diagnosed a lice infestation. We've been powdering chickens and house regularly but not with a product containing something beginning with P (I've got it written down somewhere), so need to get some today.

She perked up after the injection, free ranged for a bit, pecked the others and came running for mealworms and sweetcorn. smile

Came out of the house this morning but still sleepy. I'm taking her back to vets today for a blood test, maybe that will shed more light on it.

Other chickens seem fine, so hopefully its not contagious.

Callisto Thu 17-Jul-08 08:06:48

Sylvev - please do bear in mind that a blood test will be expensive and (despite the fact that your chooks may be pets) might not be worth having done.

<hopes that was tactful enough>

tortoiseSHELL Thu 17-Jul-08 08:58:14

Poultry shield?

sylvev Thu 17-Jul-08 17:05:14

She's much perkier now! Eaten a pile of mashed potatoes, cheese, sweetcorn & poultry spice; ran for mealworms and is out scratching in the garden now smile

She still gets a bit sleepy but I think she's on the mend. Didn't take her for blood test, it would have been £60!

We were using a barrier lice powder which only repelled rather than killed the lice. We've got some "kill pest insect powder" now which vet recommended.

Thanks for all your advice and ideas.

tortoiseSHELL Thu 17-Jul-08 17:05:45

Excellent! smile

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