Rosie is our only layer out of three young hens. Clementine and Juniper are our Delawares who haven’t yet begun. Well over the last few days, there hasn’t been any egg at all and then this morning Rosie had some bloody mucus hanging out of her backside.
I had Gordon and the boys check on her a few times today while I was at work just to see if she was eating and getting around ok. She was. But obsessed hypochondriac that I can be on occasion, and because of my online research, I was concerned that we could be dealing with an egg-bound lady or a prolapsed vent.
Better safe than sorry, I clipped my nails, scrubbed my hands, grabbed a pair of latex gloves and a blob of coconut oil, and headed out to the coop in the rainy darkness. Flashlight in mouth, I opened the front of the coop and was greeted by sleepy clucks. Happily noting that Rosie had made friends enough to be snuggling with a Delaware, I snapped on the gloves. I went for the Red and failed. Tried again and failed. Wings flapped and squawks erupted. Rosie was determined to not let me touch her, even when ambushed at night. I was determined to not be bested by a damn chicken and grabbed her. She protested loudly but I was able to hold down her wings and grab her legs. I gently turned her upside down and magically she calmed. I supported her against my side and examined her vent. It looked fine! Nothing bulging or hanging out; nothing red or swollen. Then I bravely coated my gloved pinky in the oil and gently poked it in, feeling for a stuck egg. Again, nothing! I flipped Rosie back upwards and cradled her like I can sometimes do to the others. I petted her back, sang her a little song, and kissed her on the neck. She didn’t seem to hate it at all. In fact, when i put her back into the coop, she was in no hurry to get away from me.
I closed up the coop and marched back across the rainy yard, very pleased with myself. I’m a real farmer now, I thought. Rosie is ok and I can take care of my chickens.
Maybe Rosie will take food out of my hand soon.
UPDATE (12/6/16): She’s back!
Her comb and wattles seemed really red on Saturday and then on Sunday she squatted when I was in the coop feeding/harassing them.
Tuesday morning I found an egg! Way to go, Rosie!