Got An Egg Bound Hen? Try This Before Heading To The Animal Hospital
Raising your own chickens means fresh eggs pretty much daily right from your own backyard. however, just like humans can run into problems when giving birth hens can also have an occasional problem with laying an egg. If a hen becomes egg bound, this basically means that she has a developed egg stuck inside of her, which can lead to all kinds of problems, discomfort, and even death for your chicken. While having an egg bound hen can require a visit to your local animal hospital for help, there may be a few things you can do to help her along first on your own.
Lubricate the hens vent with a gloved finger and lubricating jelly.
The symptoms of an egg bound hen are fairly easy to spot. She will usually seem uncomfortable, can be seen pushing repeatedly, and may even waddle or squat as she walks. Nevertheless, it is always a wise move to manually examine the hen to make sure she does have a lodged egg inside of her. Slip on a glove and cover one finger well with lubricating jelly. Slip the one finger into her vent in a straight line not at an angle.
You will usually feel an egg right past the entrance. If you do, try adding extra lubrication as close to the egg as possible and around the vent. Sometimes, this will be all it takes to help the egg slide out. Keep in mind that you should never put pressure on the egg itself or try to manually pull it out as this can cause the egg to break inside of your hen. Even though this may sound like a welcomed relief for your chicken, the broken shards of eggshell can cause internal injuries.
Try soaking the hens backside in epsom salt and warm water.
If a larger egg than usual develops or comes through the uterus at an awkward angle, it can mean the hen will strain for hours trying to push the egg out, which can cause the inside of the hen's cloaca to swell with inflammation. Soaking the hen in warm water and epsom salt can relieve some of the swelling, which will allow the egg to come on out with less struggle.
Warm epsom salt soaks are easiest tackled in the hosue where you have constant access to warm water to top off the soaking tub. You may hae to push the hen down into the water slightly with one hand so she is immersed in the warm bath over her vent.