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Dolly

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Everything posted by Dolly

  1. Sorry but I would go nuts if anyone did this to me! I wouldn't stand for all and sundry coming into my garden when they feel like it, making in your case, unsubstantiated comments on my animal husbandry and feeding them whatever they wanted! As Egluntyne said, she's trespassing and I would agree that taking steps to prevent free access to your garden is the way to go. If you feel like you have to speak to her, just thank her for her interest but in the interests of your girls, you must be the only person feeding and caring for them. Good luck and let us know how you get on
  2. I'm certainly no expert but it does sound like Mycoplasma from my experience, the swollen face seems to be the giveaway. She'll definately need to see a vet for medication, our girl was given a course of Tylan (via the drinking water) and was back to herself a few days later. I understand it can come back in the future once they've had it. If your local vet doesn't have a poultry expert, perhaps you could ring around a few others to ask if they do before you take her? Also I think there are some recommended vets listed on the forum somewhere if you do a search. Good luck.
  3. Don't give up, it sounds like you're doing a great job and obviously care for them. As for the ups and downs of chicken keeping, I think we've had every single thing going over the last couple of years but you get through it and as someone said earlier, you just learn from it - we wouldn't be without them now. Our 2 new hybrid girls are like whippets, you can clearly feel their breastbones but they have access to all the food they could want and free range almost daily so also eat whatever they find on their travels. We make sure all our girls are wormed every 3-4 months with Flubenvet, as a preventative. Treats don't have to cost much, ours get things like mixed corn which is only a few quid for a big bag, fruit and veg that we didn't get round to eating (but never give them mouldy or food that's gone off), the odd piece of brocolli or cabbage hung up in the run for them to peck at and keep them entertained, canned sweetcorn (in water, not sweetened stuff) etc. Just remember treats are just that, they shouldn't make up a large part of their diet. Good luck!
  4. Just a thought but check for signs of egg white/yolk in the poo tray or nest box ie. with no shell, this is what happened to one of our girls who laid the inside but the shell got stuck inside her. We took her to a vet to have it removed and she perked up afterwards and was back to normal the next day.
  5. OMG, whole frogs?! We have a toad who lives on (yes, on) the lawnmower in the shed, affectionately known as Terrence, who we have to move every time we want to use it, I'd better make sure he's somewhere out of sight in future!!
  6. Yep me too, I've just got back from a weekend away and missed them like mad! We go away for 2 weeks soon (I'll have to take photos of them with me!) and they go for their hen holiday to a lovely chickeny place near us. Last time we were there, I mentioned how much I miss them when we're away and the guy said "oh I know, we had a lady recently who cried her eyes out when she dropped them off!"
  7. After a couple of days away, I let the girls out of the WIR and Tilly shot out, grabbed something from the bushes and ran off with the others in hot pursuit. Just as I made out what it was, she gobbled it down and looked quite pleased with herself before I could grab it off her - it was a tiny unfeathered dead baby bird!! I know they are prone to eating all sorts but is this normal / okay for her to eat?! Should I be worried about her getting ill / worms etc?
  8. It's awful when they go and I know how you feel after losing my beautiful Lola this week, but what a wonderful life Baroness had with you, everything a little girl could want.
  9. Hi Kate Sorry to hear about your poorly girl. And no, I don't think you're mad either! I tried the Suprelorin implant for one of my girls who kept getting soft egg shells stuck inside her, it did work (at a cost of about £50 plus the consultation fee) but only lasted 5 weeks - from the reports I'd read on the forum I was hoping for about 6 months! It did give her a break though and she's (fingers crossed tightly and holding breath) been ok since. Good luck!
  10. Today, I had to say goodbye to my lovely Lola who sadly had to be put to sleep, after peritonitis was confirmed at the vets. She was such a dear, sweet girl who was always polite and gently took her treats from your hand like the lady she was. Lola you were loved by everyone and will be missed terribly, especially by your best friend Roxy. Sleep well my little angel
  11. Thank you all so much for your kind words, it really helps as I know you understand how I feel. It was sad letting the girls out this morning and not seeing Lola there, waiting her turn to get into the garden, but I know I did the right thing for her yesterday. I also want to say thank you to everyone for posting your experiences, good and bad on the forum generally, it was because of this knowledge I was able to spot the signs of Lola's illness quickly, so long may it continue.
  12. After noticing Lola wasn't quite right but was still up to doing normal chickeny things, I took her to the vets this morning to have my worst fears confirmed.... she had peritonitis. He said I'd caught it early but she was visibly unwell, her breathing was laboured and as I cuddled her to say the inevitable goodbye, her comb could be seen turning blue and she closed her eyes as I held her in my arms, something she never does as cuddles weren't her favourite thing. He was lovely with her and returned her to me afterwards in her carry box, with her head under her wing as if she was just asleep. I'm in tears as a write this, when you love these little bundles of feathers so much, it hurts equally as much when they have to go. Goodbye my dear, sweet, gentle Lola, we will all miss you.
  13. Thanks for your thoughts everyone. Last night I was going to leave them where they wanted to sleep in the WIR, but just before it got totally dark, my nerves couldn't stand it and I dashed out to put them in the eglu! This is ok while I'm here but we're going away for the weekend soon so they'll be left to their own devices at night.... (there are plastic covers around the raised area in the run they've chosen to sleep on, so at least that should protect them from the wind/rain)
  14. Our girls have recently taken to sleeping in the WIR and not in the eglu, but I'm worried about them all being piled up against the wire mesh, where they could be attacked by foxes - am I worrying unnecessarily or should I continue to gather them up and pop them in the eglu each night? PS. I've checked for mites etc in case that's why they won't sleep inside but thankfully it's clear.
  15. Last night, as we gathered up the 2 girls who have recently started sleeping outside, and put them in the eglu, my OH said "they probably sleep outside because it's quite a squash for 4 of them in there" - why oh why did he have to go and say that, now I'm thinking oooh, maybe we should get a cube! Particularly as I'm out of work as of this week and have some redundancy money just waiting to be spent (I mean saved to pay the mortgage).... And I suppose while I'm thinking about a cube, it would be rude not to consider attaching it to a lovely big WIR..... Somebody stop me! PS. I've checked for mites etc. in the eglu just in case that's why they're avoiding it at night but thankfully it's clear.
  16. £1.50 per egg? I reckon that's a bargain!! Given how much we spoil our lot and the cost of recent vets bills, I would never have the courage to actually work out what our eggs cost! But, no matter how much it is, I wouldn't be without them, they bring so much life to the garden and happiness to me, they're priceless.
  17. So sorry to hear your girl is poorly. I'm no expert but it sounds like it could be mycoplasma from your description of the foamy, swollen eye. We had a girl with this a while ago and she was treated successfully by the vet with Tylan - I'm a bit surprised your vet didn't consider this - do they have an avian specialist you could see or perhaps consider another practice who have poultry expertise? The wet dog smell and gummed up feathers sound like a case of Northern Fowl Mite which were the first symptoms I noticed with our girl - part the feathers and have a look, you may see tiny grey mites and eggs stuck to the base of the feathers. We managed to get rid of this with Ivomec Eprinex (only available from a vet and not licenced for poultry - its actually aimed at cattle). Its a particularly difficult mite to get rid of but if you use the search box on the forum, you'll find more detailed info which may help. Both of the above need treating asap and a good poultry vet should be able to help her. As I said earlier, I'm certainly no expert and speak only from personal experience but hopefully someone more knowledgeable than me will come along soon! Good luck and keep us posted.
  18. Hi Loumabel I had exactly the same problem with Roxy, who last July, managed to snap the entire top part of her beak off when she caught her bumper bit on something, as you say, right up to her nostrils. It was awful, blood everywhere and I thought she wouldnt even survive the mad dash to the vets. They tried to glue it back on but to no avail and after an hour of surgery trying to save it, the vet removed it altogether. She spent some time recuperating in a separate run but next to the others and was integrated back with them a week or two later. This was 10 months ago and she's been fine ever since, despite looking a bit odd if you're not used to it. At the time, the vet took her home himself for a day or two to make sure she could eat ok, otherwise there would have been no other option but to pts but he said she rallied round very quickly and found new ways to eat her food. I would not have considered saving her if it meant her quality of life would have been poor, despite her being my favourite (don't tell the others!). To make sure she can eat, she needs deep filled food pots so she can pick up the pellets and has small food items ie. corn in a bowl with a piece of sponge at the bottom which she can push her bottom beak into to grab it. She can drink normally from either a gravity drinker or the glug (the open type, not nipple feeders). All in all she manages very well and is thriving so I hope your girl will be the same. We just refer to her as our 'special needs' girl now! Good luck. PS. her beak has never grown back at all though.
  19. I know a few people on here have hens with Suprelorin implants and wondered how long on average they lasted you? I was a bit shocked to find after only 5 weeks, Roxy has laid again!! And yes, it was a soft egg She laid the following day too (yesterday) but this one was normal. Still waiting to see what happens today.... I know the implant is new and experimental when it comes to use in hens but I was rather hoping for more than 5 weeks reprieve!! I can't bear to think about Roxy going through the stress again of repeat visits to the vets to have stuck egg shells removed. I really thought this problem was fixed for 6 months or so...
  20. I'm looking to buy a WIR for the girls and noticed that Aviaries 4U are often recommended. However, I understand they've now been taken over by someone else - does anyone have any recent experience and would you still recommend them? Thanks all!
  21. One of our girls had a similar problem a while ago and it turned out to be an egg shell stuck inside her - but I had noticed she'd laid the inside of the egg on it's own so suspected it could be this. We took her to the vet and he removed the shell, as it was squashed flat inside her and she couldn't pass it on her own. I know some people are able to do this themselves but I'm in no way an expert so didn't want to risk doing her any damage or making things worse.
  22. Hi Lucia Our new columbine was exactly as you've described when we got her, she's definately the bottom of the pecking order and was more withdrawn than the others for a good few weeks. Extra food and water stations in the run (and the garden when FRing) helped, along with a bit of 'secret' treat feeding to feed her up when the others weren't looking! Now 6 or so weeks on, she's bright, lively and the most inquisitive of the lot so hopefully your girl is just going through the same process and will be fine. Good luck!
  23. Tilly had her check up at the vets last night and I'm very pleased to report that her ulcer appears to be reducing! She only keeps it closed now and then, as opposed to almost constantly, so the vet advised to keep up with the eye drops until she's using her eye all the time (he thought this could be in a about a week or so). So luckily we've avoided surgery, which I have to admit I was worried about, but the vet did assure me it wasn't something to panic over if we do need it later. I hope that's our chicken problems over now, with one thing and another I think we've definately had our fair share for a long a time to come!
  24. Hi Hazel When we had a similar problem I tried the beak rings (white sort of 'U' shaped things) as opposed to bumper bits which kept the beak open more and she couldn't grip the feathers at all. She could still eat and drink okay but couldn't pick up small bits off the floor so we gave treats ie corn in a deep filled bowl. Other than that have you tried Ukadex? It absolutely stinks and might help but keep an old set of clothes to wear when you apply it because it stains brown and you'll never get the smell out! Good luck.
  25. We took Roxy to the vets the following morning but unfortunately the only 2 vets who have in-depth poultry knowledge weren't available I ended up giving suggestions to the vet as to what I thought was wrong with her (possibly coccidiosis?) and after checking the poo sample I took in under the microscope, she prescribed Coxi Plus and sent the sample for lab testing. The vet and my OH didn't seem to think going down the PTS route was needed yet. We separated her from the others and gave her a large selection of treats, porridge etc to encourage her to eat. The next day she seemed about the same but I kept tempting her with any food she'd take from me. She improved a bit each day and now she's a different girl, bright eyed, eating and drinking and apart from a few runny droppings, almost back to herself! She didnt have cocci in the end but they're now testing for salmonella just to rule that out. I spoke to our usual vet who said to continue with the Coxi Plus anyway, as it contained a broad spectrum antibiotic which would help. Our little Roxy is definately a fighter who didn't want to leave just yet, probably just in case she missed anything! So I'm cautiously celebrating as we're not out of the woods completely but I'm so happy to see her bossing everyone round again!

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