Homesteading keeps you on your toes especially when you have live animals you need to care for. This is particularly important when the temps hit triple digits (like it did a couple weeks ago).

High temps demand that you take special care of the homestead menagerie as it puts added stress on the animals. This week, we had to deal with one of our bantam hens (now 6 years old) who was having trouble laying (can develop into something serious if the egg doesn’t pass). We noticed that she was not running around with the others in the compound so we went over to inspect in order to determine what the problem was. She was trying to lay but was having a hard time of it. Not wanting to disturb her in this sensitive situation, we felt we’d give her some time; but, we kept a watchful eye, hoping that she wouldn’t need assistance.

Well, turns out it wasn’t an easy lay as she kept scrunching. After 10 minutes or so, we noticed she was prolapsing a bit. Guess the poor girl was stressed with the heat and needed some extra help. We couldn’t let her continue on with this uncomfortable ordeal. We went into the house and got some hot water and gently placed her in the water “chest high” making sure her backside and belly were both under the water, while lightly stroking her lower area in a downwards motion. It worked, and within about a minute, out popped the egg and she was off to join her mates scratching for worms.

Whew, what a blessing!




  1. Nebraska Dave says:

    Anais, was the egg over sized? I know how you are with your chickens. Does issues like that happen often? Do old chickens eventually stop laying eggs? We never kept our chickens long enough for me to know these answers. You always seem to know what to do to help your animals through the tough times of their lives.

    Have a great chicken egg laying day.

    • Anais Dervaes says:

      Egg seemed normal but we had just experienced a 20 degree change in the weather and that might have stressed her out.

  2. Susan says:

    Poor chicken! Did she seem to sense that you were trying to help her, or did she struggle when you put her in the water?

    • Anais Dervaes says:

      She struggled when I picked her up but when placed in the warm water is was very calm.

  3. Heather says:

    Hi Anais,

    I’m new here and late for the conversation, but I have to say, ” Well done.” I would have been frantic if that happened to me…but now I know what to do if it ever should happen.
    I just got my girls a few months ago during the triple digit days this last summer. The poor lil’ things were actually panting, and that made me very nervous. Their coop and run were fairly well shaded and they had water, but I still felt bad for them. My black Australorp (Myrtle) is the only one laying of the five; I hope to get eggs from a few more before they start to molt – we’ll see =)

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