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I have four laying hens. All the feathers around their "vent" area are covered in dried feces. How do I clean it? Will it cause infection?

They clean themselves in sand like most birds, but it gets worse everyday. The feces just builds up! They are almost a year old. Should I take them to the vet?

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It's called pasty butt. Pasty butt is when the poop gets dried to the feathers. It is a horrible condition and needs to be taken seriously and treated quickly. First get Luke warm water that is running from your faucet or water hose. Then get your hens and start getting the dried poop wet. Gently break it off the feathers. Get scissors and clip the really hard parts off. After getting The poop off dry them off and put them outside. If it comes back then clip the feathers around their butt. If it becomes an on going problem then you may try changing their feed. Oats and barley wheat cause pasty butt so to prevent it feed them corn and seeds. Another thing that may help is giving them more space to roam. If they are caged I recommend giving them more space. If you don't treat pasty butt your chickens will die from not being able to poop. Hope this helps. "been raising chickens, peacocks and guineas for 5 years.

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I was aware it was pasty butt. But looking up solutions online only gave answers you would use for chicks
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thank you! :D you really helped out
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Your welcome! :)
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To clean the feathers, prepare the washing containers first, by pouring ivory liquid or liquid castile soap in the first tub, plain old water in the second tub and a mixture of vinegar and water in the third tub. Secondly, immerse the chicken feathers in the first tub slowly for some few minutes to dissolve them. Thirdly, transfer the chicken to the second tub and then plunge up and down to get the soap out. Next, immerse it to the third tub to make the feathers shiner and finally, dry your chicken.

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thank you so much! :D
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