The Prolapsed Vent Issue

Author: Meera, April 15, 2015

It happened to one of my chickens a few years ago; now, it’s happened again.


The Ameraucana (left) with a Buff Orpington (right)

The Ameraucana (left) with a Buff Orpington (right)



My one-year-old Ameraucana hen–a blue-egg layer–developed a prolapsed vent from trying to lay a too-large egg. The first time it happened, I did all the things I’ve learned to do: separate her from the flock, reduce light, nutrition, and water (to stop her from trying to lay more eggs).



I used a lukewarm towel to clean her. Latex gloves and vaseline to try to push the vent/cloaca back in. And it worked for a while. It took her a couple of weeks to recover. Elated, I thought she would be fine. Not so.



The ameraucana and a white Leghorn with a Rhode Island Red chicken at the bottom of the frame

Top to bottom: Ameraucana, white Leghorn, and Rhode Island Red hens




By the time I realized it had occurred again, the other chickens had been pecking her–drawing blood–and she seemed weak, wobbly, and near death. I repeated the previous steps, thinking she’d pull out of it, but by morning she was gone.



Disheartened, I began to search chicken forums on the Internet to find out which breeds are susceptible to this issue. I learned the Cornish game hens and chickens that are bred for meaty bodies are more likely to have the vent prolapse, but I haven’t yet learned whether or not the Ameraucanas are equally susceptible. If anyone knows, drop me a line. Thanks.



Tags: , , , , ,


Leave a Reply