Chicken Swollen Below Vent (1 Reason Why + What To Do)

Chickens can get diseases quite easily, these birds can become ill if they aren’t eating well, if their environment is not ideal, and if they are under stress.

If your chicken is swollen under its vent this may be why:

Chicken swollen below vent:

The vent is what your chicken’s waste products come out of, it is also where eggs come out of. If this area changes in appearance, or color, then there is definitely something going on with your bird.

If your chicken is swollen below the vent then your bird likely has a prolapsed vent

Prolapsed vent:

All of your bird’s internal organs are meant to stay in your bird. A prolapsed vent happens when one of your bird’s internal organs, the cloaca, starts to protrude out of the bird’s body.

This condition is also known as a blow-out, prolapsed oviduct, cloacal prolapse, or a pick-out.

Regardless of the name, if your bird has this condition then what you’ll see is what looks like a swollen mass at the bird’s vent, this is the bird’s cloaca, or the lower part of the bird’s oviduct, protruding out of the bird’s vent 

Other symptoms:

Other symptoms of this ailment, in addition to what looks like swelling, include:

  • Vent pecking
  • Excessive preening 
  • Straining

Causes of a prolapsed vent:

A prolapsed vent develops when the bird strains to get an egg out, the cloaca will come out because of all this strain, this happens because:

The bird is too young to lay: If the bird is too young then its body may not be able to lay an egg without a large amount of strain. When the bird does finally lay, the vent may become prolapsed

Large eggs: Large eggs are more difficult to lay, thus, if an egg is too large for a bird, and the bird tries to pass it, the vent may become prolapsed when the egg comes out 

Obese chickens: Obese birds are unable, or less able, to rise up and lay an egg. If the bird strains to raise herself up then she will also strain when trying to lay an egg.

Calcium deficiency: A lack of calcium may cause the bird to strain when laying eggs, calcium is an important part of the egg-laying process. 

What to do:

The treatment options are simple but you need to quickly treat the bird to prevent a bacterial infection from developing, this can happen if the prolapsed vent is left without treatment for too long. This is how you can treat your bird:

Isolate the bird: Start off by isolating the bird, isolating the bird will keep the bird calm and it will keep other birds from becoming curious and pecking at the vent. Pecking would be dangerous and painful to the bird. 

Wash the bird: Cleaning the bird up is what you’d need to do next, create a warm water bath for the bird and remove all the debris and feces that may be on the prolapsed vent. 

Examine the mass: Check that the cloaca was not damaged while outside of the bird’s body. If the cloaca is damaged then you should not move on to the next steps, you should rather take your bird to the vet for treatment.

Treat the swelling: The bird’s vent may be swollen, you can treat the bird’s swelling at home using dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) or a solution of 50% dextrose. Apply this treatment regularly to the bird’s vent until the vent is no longer swollen. 

Massage the cloaca back into position: If there is no damage to the cloaca after examination then you can push the cloaca back into the bird’s body.

Use a water-based lubricant to make this process easier for you and the bird. You can use KY jelly as a water-based lubricant. Wear a pair of gloves, apply the KY jelly, then slowly massage/push the prolapsed vent back into place. 

When to visit a vet: If you’ve tried to push the cloaca back into the bird on different occasions, and you’re having no luck, then it may be best to contact your local vet and get them to see your bird. The vet will be able to put the tissue back in place. 

If you enjoyed this article then you may also be interested in other chicken related articles. Here are some articles that you may be interested in: Chicken Bloated And Lethargic,  Dead Chick In Incubator,  Lethargic Chicken With A Dirty Vent,  Vent Gleet Or Egg Bound, Swollen Chicken Vent 

Chicken Swollen Below Vent (1 Reason Why + What To Do)
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