Tail Down: What’s Up? (eggbound chicken)

Recently, our smallest hen, JoJo, has been walking around with her tail down. We see this activity especially around our other two chickens. She was always the runt of the group so it is possible that she is feeling intimidated, or being “bullied” by the other chickens. It could also be that she is egg bound. This is a very serious problem that is not very common with chickens, but it obviously does occur. Being eggbound means that your chicken has an egg stuck in their oviduct. Signs of an eggbound hen are a droopy tail, she is fluffed up, acting lethargic, sitting/laying on the ground most of the time, fatigue, closed eyes, lack of energy, or dragging wings. If she is straining herself throughout the day or on occasion is also another sign. if you feel an egg-shaped lump, that’s pretty much all the proof you need to know you must take action. reasons why she may be eggbound could be because her pelvis simply isn’t big enough, she isn’t getting enough calcium, she has too much protein, stress, bad quality feed,  or dehydration. One way to help your chicken is to first, feed her more electrolytes and give her a better source of calcium, the other process is to fill a tray with a shallow amount of warm water, tall enough to soak your chickens bottom in. While she is in the water you should massage her abdomen area. After soaking her for 5-10 minutes take her out a dry her with a towel. If it is winter time use a hair dryer on the lowest setting, or make usre she is COMPLETELY dry before letting her back outside.  keep your chicken in a quiet dark cage, such as a do crate with a towel draped over the top, then put a heating pad under a towel in the crate and leave her to herself for a while. You want a moist heated environment. Continue the soaking every hour or so until she lays her egg. As a last resort you can go to a veternarian for help. Hope this helped! Any questions? Just comment below!

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2 thoughts on “Tail Down: What’s Up? (eggbound chicken)

  1. claudineise says:

    Hi Julia, I really love your blog and am so glad to read your updates! (This is your neighbor Claudine). I know who to come to if our chicks ever become eggbound. We are taking them out every day and putting them in a small pen in our backyard. We use garden edging to make a small fence but the red star, Jenny, is big enough to jump over it already! She is only 2 weeks old!!!

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