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Help! My rescued cockerel seems weak and has a slight tremor. UPDATE: Do worms may lessen or increase the chick's apetite?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 



Please help!!


My three month old chicken has for the past two days a slight tremor in his legs. He can walk and jump (but not as grounded as before), eats fairly the same and poops as usual. However he seems weak and his comb is slightly pale. He has been crowing for the past three weeks but has not crowed in the last couple of days. He pants a little when we pick him up as he were very hot. Does this mean that he has fever?


He can walk but he does not run as a he used to run. We can pick him up much more easier than before (as he does not longer put up the usual teen roo fight of "I do not like to be pick up, back off"). 


He seems to have a smelly breath but I don't know if is related to some vitamins that I have started him since yesterday. 


Maybe he cought some parasite? or maybe some type of chicken flu? How can you tell if your cockerel has fever?


I have research the site but the syntoms other chicken have do not relate to his as he is eating well and his poops is the same, and his head does not shake. 


Has anyone have the same problem? Does chickens may be under the weather one day and recover the other? Or maybe if a chickens get sick, he does not longer recover without meds?



PLEASE HELP! He is a pet for us, we rescued him when he was attacked by a hawk and could not walk for a week (badly bruised) and his owner did not care for him. We really do not want to lose him :(




Any help is welcome!


Maybe any antibiotic that you may recomend?

Edited by Lilianka - 11/8/15 at 5:42pm
post #2 of 16

My 4month old rooster started with just lameness, and then weakness, then losing his balance.....right now the diagnosis is between marek disease, vit B deficiency (yeast is really good for that), or possible heavy metal poisoning. Whatever it is, don't wait to do something, as it evolves very fast....At the point where my rooster is, I don't think we can save him anymore, as he can t even stand up..and it has evolved within less than 2 week

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi ClaireDL,


D: Sorry for your little guy :(


We started by giving him vitamins (will check if there is some B vitamin in those), and will continue with antibiotics. I hope it is not too late for him :hit As for today he seems to be getting a little better, he is not panting as much (seems his fever is going down) but he went to bed quite earlier than usual :/


I thought Marek was prevalent among young chicks, up to 4 weeks I guess (I might be wrong), but our little guy is 12-15 weeks so I do not think is that, plus he is our only chicken (a little lonely) so I think Marek's is not what he has 'cause there is no other chicken he could cought it from , right?


Thank you for your response!

post #4 of 16
Marek's can flare up during puberty, and it can also lie dormant for a while. Chicks up to four weeks are unlikely to have Marek's.

Can you take him to a vet? What does his breath smell like, exactly?

(Don't get him any flockmates until this is sorted. When you do, try and get older hens. They'll teach him good manners.)
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi Sutremaine,


His breath smells a little like fish going bad. I have read some threads that relates symptoms that my chick has such as shakes and smelly breath and found that it was Sour crop!!. But I do not know  if that is what he has as I can not feel anything wrong with his crop. However if he continues with his weakness I will take him to the vet tomorrow. 


I hope he has nothing blocking his crop :/


Will keep posting his progress

post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

:( Bad news.


He didn't crow today either. He stayed in his perch and did not go down by himself to eat and drink. I have checked his crop and seems empty, I didn't feel any foreign objects and it was not inflamed so I don't know if sour crop is what he has. His breath seemed ok.... He seems weaker and loses his balance a lot more. He ate a little oatmeal and a little of a scrambled egg but not much. He is not very active right now.



I'm taking him to the vet. Hope he does much better today. 

post #7 of 16

Marek comes typically when they are 3 to 4 months old..That's why my vet jump to the conclusion even before seeing the bird that it was certainly marek disease...HIs eyes don't look like the ones of a marek chicken.....If you give your cockerel some beneficial yeast, they love it and it's full of vit B. Natural vitamins are better absorbed than synthetic vitamins. Also a good source a protein and vitamin is spirulina..

Good luck with your cockerel....I hope you caught that on time!..

Mine is going to the vet this afternoon, certainly to not come back..He has now some " tetany" crisis that are very painful.

post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Well the vet could not point it out but it seems it is a fever of a kind. I have just crossed my fingers and hope he will wake up tomorrow. sad.png We gave him some antibiotics vitamins and his favorite BOSS. My bf and I are very sad as he was our pet chicken T.T
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

He survived the night!:yiipchick

He seems less hot and shakes a little less, he doesn't pant and is a little more cheerfull. The vet says that he has an injury in his tongue and that probably he has also injured his neck and crop with whatever hurt his tongue and that probably was getting infected (thus the fever). He still is having his antibiotics and vitamins. I hope he crows tomorrow.!! Feed him with mushy oatmeal and his favorite BOSS.
Yesterday, I stuffed him with BOSS thinking that it would be his last day, but he made it (I do not know if that helped saving him but I'm happy he survived, maybe the two droplets of tylenol for babies helped  lowering his fever so he could sleep better). Now I think he is expecting more of it -but he ate all of his seeds yesterday- :/


@ClaireDL I'm sorry for your loss, I hope your other girls are ok!!

post #10 of 16

great news!...We ended not euthanizing mine,,,,we're trying to give him another week...Keep us posted!

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