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Help! Baby chick breathing hard and fast

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi all,

This is my fist "hatch".  I have 6 chicks, and the small white-crested black polish chick is not progressing well.  He sleeps a lot and breathes heavy and fast.  He is one week old.

Is there anything I can do for him??

Thanks a lot,
Keely:(sad

post #2 of 5

Could they be too hot?  Put a thermometer in the brooder and check to see if it's around 90 (proper temp).  And do they have any cool spots to get away from the 90 if it's still too warm for them?  Under the lamp should be around 85-90 at 1-2 wks old and then cooler outside of that space.

Breeds: Lavender, Buff, Black and White Orpington & Tufted Rumpless Araucana (lavender, white and nonstandard colors)

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Breeds: Lavender, Buff, Black and White Orpington & Tufted Rumpless Araucana (lavender, white and nonstandard colors)

Reply
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks!  I will check the temp.  They do have room to get away from the heat if necessary.

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi,

The temp is within the range.  A little more back story to maybe help with a prognosis.

WE have 3 Buff Orpinghtons--about a month ago our youngest Hen got broody.  After getting some different suggestions of how to get her to stop the broodiness,  the gentleman we got the hens from also told us we could let her hatch a clutch if we wanted & that would do it.  He has a 'small hobby' chicken farm  and he gave us 12 fertilized egges of different breeds--he even offered to take back any of the hatchlings we didn't want:)

Lizzie turned out to be a good mother & sat on them the whole time.  Only 8 out of the 12 hatched though.   One must have died the first night shortly after hatching (we found her later buried at the the bottom of the nest) Another was born "not quite right"--she never opened her eyes, never stood on her own feet & was a little runtish.  By the third day the mother was ignoring her (mother somehow always knows I guess) & the other chicks would walk over her so we were forced to end her suffering.  Out of the eggs not hatched we found that the two Millie's had never developed and one Orp or RIRs and one Dominique had been fully developed but had never broken through the membrane.  The remaining chicks all seemed strong & normal.  We were planning to let them stay with the mother as the best thing with them but on the fourth day when we put them out of the nesting box/coop into the pen--the chicks were still small enough to get through the chicken wire.  we moved the chicks to a large brooding bin inside the house in the upstairs guest room.  The chicks transistioned fine (& after a day of clucking & searching the coop & pen for her chicks--the mother is back to normal with the other Orp hens and over her broodiness).

As for the chicks--it looks like we have 2 black dominiques (or maybe barred rock?), 3 Rhode Island Reds, & 1 White crested polish.  Unsure of the sex of any of them at this point.  All are now a little over a week old.  The dominiques & RIRs are robust, strong, & healthy.  The little polish crest, Spike, is probably half their size.  We have noticed now that they are in the brooder box that something might be wrong with spike (in the nesting box he/she always stayed closest to the mother in the back but even then we saw he/she was the smallest).  He/she eats, drinks, peeps, poops & preens as like all the others.  None of the other chicks pick on spike  (though he/she gets bumped around due to his small size as the chicks move around--large 4 ft long bin but they like to stay in a group).  Even noticed that when we would hold them cupped in our hands or laps spike would be the one that would peck the others sometimes. 

The thing we noticed is that he breathes "very hard" his whole little body moves as he takes each breath.    Also, though he stays in the group most of the time--when the others are active & playing he just sits or stands in a corner breathing hard.  Tonight we let them out on the guest room floor & the others were running around, flitting & hopping with each other--spike would stand off to the side just looking around & breathing hard.  I t almost looks like the little sterotype of the little asthmatic little guy on the playground watching the more active kids.  He is pooping fine & he eats & drinks  & preens him/herself but doesn't play like the others.  Also when you hold him in your hand he falls asleep almost instantly--even in the brooder bin when he is standing in the middle of the group his/her head will drop a little and he/she will nod off.  When he is bumped he will awaken but will shortly nod off again---almost like his efforts at breathing are exhausting him.  (don't no why I want to keep refering to him as a he--don't know the sex yet).  At first thought it was possibly breed specific--maybe being the polish white crest was a little more dainty & not as robust as the other breeds but now not to sure and starting to worry about him.  Any ideas on his condition or suggestions would be much appreciated.


ps to mods:  I guess this thread might be better suited in another forum category like injury/disease or so.  Dont want to make different threads on the same topic so feel free to move it if needed.

Thanks


Edited by luvinchix - 5/3/09 at 8:28pm
post #5 of 5

Hello, I have a 5 week old barred rock doing the exact same thing.  Breathing very fast, falls asleep if I hold her. Hardly growing at all.  I see this was posted in 2009, just wondering the outcome of your chick and if you learned anything further??  Thank you.

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