My 12 bantam chicks arrived Wednesday from MyPetChicken. After treating a few sticky butts and a little shipping stress, all are now very lively and seem healthy. But now, at 4 days old they've started scratching themselves like crazy. They scratch their faces/necks especially, but also their chests, wings, and hips. It seems to have started all at once. I have black chicks and white chicks so I figure if there were lice or mites, I could see them. And I've repeatedly checked them extremely closely from head to toe, down to the skin and I see nothing at all on their down or skin.
They are in a new brooder (very large cardboard box) never used before, and are in the house. I use a 100-watt red heat lamp and they seem comfortable with the temperature. They're on layers of paper towels with aspen shavings underneath and they have fresh water and medicated feed available at all times.
The only thing I did different today was when I changed out the paper towels, I took them out of the brooder and they were in a smaller box without the heat lamp for about 4 or 5 minutes. The temperature inside the room was about 85. That was about 10 hours before the itching started. If they were chilled, could that have made them itchy? Or do baby chicks normally itch at this age when their wing feathers are starting to come in?
I'm also wondering if chicks can have inhalation allergies that causes itching like dogs do? Like scents from perfumes, soaps, etc.
I appreciate any suggestions or ideas on what is going on with my babies.
Edited by BWchicken - 8/14/09 at 5:23am