Well, summer is truly upon us. Like an athlete will drink Powerade after a race, sometimes chickens need a little boost and rebalancing.
Electrolytes replace sodium, potassium and minerals in the body lost due to stress, overheating or dehydration; they also rehydrate and rebalance the body’s pH levels. All super important for all bodily functions.
You can read ways to keep your flock cool here
Some signs that your chickens are suffering heat stress to look out for are:
🔥 holding their wings away from their body
🔥 panting- almost like gasping
🔥 increased thirst
🔥 looking lethargic and floppy
🔥 pale or discoloured combs and wattles
🔥 egg production may also decrease with prolonged heat exposure
If your chooks are suffering from dehydration and you don’t have any store bought supplements on hand, a good homemade electrolyte recipe to use is below.
This recipe can also help with:
⚕️Wry neck: Chicks (or adults) who develop wry neck require a mixture of electrolytes and vitamins.
⚕️Weak chicks: Sometimes recently hatched chicks require a bit of extra help. They may have had a long, hard struggle to hatch, or perhaps you’ve noticed that there’s a baby who’s not quite as strong as the rest.
⚕️Pasty butt: Chicks which have pasty butt are in danger of losing liquid very quickly
Homemade Chicken Electrolyte Solution
3 litres of water
8 teaspoons sucrose – granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon sodium chloride – sea salt/table salt
1/2 teaspoon sodium bicarbonate – baking soda
1/2 teaspoon potassium chloride – if available – some health food shops stock
Whisk/Stir all ingredients together
Offer to chicks or adult chickens for several hours as their only water source and then offer plain water for several hours. Repeat until symptoms subside. Offer it only to the birds who need it
Offer it for no longer than four to six hours per day, for a week.
Only use when needed in cases of emergency. Discard any unused liquid solution at the end of each day. Dried mixture can be stored in a cool, dry place.
Please remember: it’s important that you don’t give this to poultry unless there is a good reason. Too much salt can be damaging to their system.
We also stock some pre-made solutions: