He hatched last weekend and had a leg injury. His leg was splinted and he had to spend 4 days in a chick chair so his leg could heal. While he was in the chair he got water from and eye dropper and I had to feed him by hand. He would not eat on his own because he hated being in the chair so much. The great news is that he is out of the chair and bandages and can walk perfectly fine now.
The bad new is that he never learned how to eat on his own. Is it too late for him? He will eat if I put food in his mouth, but will not seek it out on his own. I've put him in a small brooder with some very mellow silkie chicks in an attempt to have them teach the chick how to eat and drink. I've weighed him every day and he's barely getting enough food to maintain himself. He has not gained any weight since he hatched. He seems to be a bit developmentally "delayed" but has started to preen himself, walk around more, etc.
Is there something I can do to encourage him to eat? I dip his beak in water and put food up to him and he just doesn't know what to do. I'm hoping it isn't too late for him to figure it out.