Sick chicken update

Our sick chicken, who we’ve started to call Droopy, has staged a miraculous recovery. As of this morning, her comb is bright red and almost vertical. There is a gleam in her eye and a spring in her step. She scratches and pecks with vigor.

I don’t have the foggiest idea what happened.

At first, I was almost sure she had an impacted egg, and we treated her for that. We gave her warm baths to try to loosen her muscles, and I donned a latex glove to see if I could try and get things moving that way.

After the treatment, I was less sure it was an egg. I didn’t think I could feel one, although I’m not even sure I got the right orifice. We suspect there may have been something intestinal, the clue to which I will not describe in detail. Suffice it to say that her poop was unusual.

Five days ago, she seemed at death’s door, and we were ready to send her through via the Cone of Silence. Then, four days ago, she seemed just a little bit better. And another little bit better the day after that. Today, she’s her old self.

I don’t know what it was, or whether the warm baths or cut-rate colonoscopies had anything to do with her recovery. I’m just glad she’s back in the pink.

We’re going to have to rename her, though.

11 people are having a conversation about “Sick chicken update

  1. Yay! I’ve wanted to know, but feared to ask, lest the news be bad. Glad the news is good, instead!

  2. I vote for Pinky! I’m glad to read that’s she’s much, much better. I wonder what she ate that made her so sick and if any of your hens can get a hold of more of it?

    I think you get the Yeoman’s Service Badge for the chicken colonoscopy…

  3. Great news!

    My chicken went through something similar last year. We thought she was just getting broody again, so no latex gloves were used. Once the constipation cleared up. all was well in her world again. I would describe it as unusual also. Thankfully, rare also. Yuck.

    Chickens are fascinating animals. I never expected them to have such personalities and moods. Bonus!

  4. Glad she’s better.

    Anybody who knows anything about chickens that I’ve ever spoken to, just says “You can never tell with chickens.”
    They seem to fall ill and then either get better or keel over, all with no apparent reason. And you never know why. I think it’s what is technically known as One Of Those Things.

  5. Man, I’m about to be the fly in your glass of wine. Miraculous recoveries from mystery illnesses in chickens are commonly followed (within six months) of a similar illness and death. In my experience. Which is limited and often wrong. But, I know you’re a realist and would rather have the full picture.

    Mysterious animal illnesses in these here parts where I live is called having “a touch of the other”. Kills lots of sheep according to farmers. I’m having that put on my gravestone: she died from a touch of t’other.

  6. Hi Tamar, I am posting for the first time here but I have been following your blog for months now.

    I just wanted to say I am so glad your chicken is better. I have been checking your site everyday for updates. It must have been quite stressful for you and Kevin, and you must be so relieved.

    In any event, thank you for your lovely posts. I have been enjoying them very much!


  7. Never has a sick chicken had so many people routing for her! Thanks for the good wishes.

    I love the expressions of the enigmatic nature of chicken illnesses — one of those things, you never can tell, a touch of the other. I guess that’s what happens when you have an animal whose existence is such that it’s usually cost-prohibitive to go to the vet.

    Jen, thanks for the warning. You’re absolutely right — I’d rather know, and be on the lookout. We have 10 new chicks coming in about a month, so we’ll be ready to cull the old flock pretty soon.

    Jules, thanks for your kind words. And thanks also for chiming in. It’s still a little odd to me that there are people I don’t know following along, and I have to remind myself that that’s part of the point. I hope you’ll stick around.

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