The risk of obesity is highest in inactive chickens maintained as pets that are overfed with energy-dense food (like chicken treats and table scraps).
Some breeds have a tendency to gain excess weight, especially the New Hampshire, Plymouth Rock, and other dual-purpose breeds.
Signs of obesity include:
- Poor laying
- Poor shell quality
- Egg laying at night
- Recurring double yolks
In addition to having poor egg production, fat hens are more prone to heatstroke and reproductive issues.
Check the region below the vent to see if a chicken is overweight. The hen is overweight if this area is dimpling and bulges.