3 day old chick with a limp

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by maestralina, Mar 3, 2014.

  1. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    Hello! I have hatched chicks for a classroom project. Soon my chickens will be going to new homes (students' homes). I have a 3 day old chick whose right leg joint is red and swollen. He/she doesn't want to put weight on the leg and when he does the leg sticks out at a funny angle. I have a feeling it is broken. Is there anything that I can and or should do? I really want to help him but I am a complete novice. The other teachers in my building have suggested just letting nature take its course or to take him to an animal hospital. The latter is an expensive option especially if they will only tell me he will not make it and the humane thing is to put him down.

    I spoke to an animal hospital and one lady there who has chickens suggested keeping him as immobile as possible and maybe trying to splint the leg??

    I am hopeful someone can help, and maybe even visit my classroom for direct advice or help!
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

    29,365
    3,432
    501
    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Welcome to BYC. It's hard to say if it is broken or may have a birth defect like slipped achilles tendon, but a break probably would heal in a couple of weeks. A splint can be made for a chick with tape and cotton padding. The slipped tendon doesn't have as good an outcome. Here is an excellent, but very long page for treatment of various leg and foot problems with instructions on splints: https://sites.google.com/a/poultrypedia.com/poultrypedia/poultry-podiatry
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2014
  3. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    Ok, I tried to feel if there was a slipped tendon (along with another teacher who has more chick experience) and we didn't feel anything amiss. So, I have tried treating for spay leg. Today he/she seems to be very distressed! He keeps trying to burrow under and almost cuddle with the other chicks. They seem to be okay with it. He cries for burst of time when he is not sleeping. He seems to sleep better when he is not around the other chicks. Should I try to isolate him in the box with one less aggressive chick? Should I take him to the vet??? I am so sad for him!
     
  4. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    The leg looks better - less red and less swollen. I am just so worried about him crying and his need to burrow up to the other chicks.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

    29,365
    3,432
    501
    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Splay legged chicks don't limp, they usually can't walk because the legs are so far apart. But you may be right on that. I would think if there was swelling and redness in the joint, that it might just be sprained. There are some little chick chairs that you can make out of cups and water bottle lids for food and water. Here is the sweetest picture of some:

    [​IMG]
    Photo by ArtsyRobin, member of BYC.
     
  6. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    Maybe I will try this! Can I put them in the brooder box like this? I don't want them to be to cold or too warm….
     
  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

    29,365
    3,432
    501
    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Yes, I think having company would help as long as it is not being pecked. Styrofoam cups may also work.
     
  8. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Here are some pictures of my gimpy chick that I took before I knew not to put him on a flat surface (this was the only time as he is normally in a breeder box). I have taped his legs together because I thought it looked like spraddle leg. The redness and swelling have gone down, but he hardly moves around and when he does he trips because he is still trying not to use the right leg. I am so worried about him that I keep coming to school earlier and earlier and staying later and later to check on him. My only other option is to leave him at home (the weather here is very cold!) and I hate the idea of him at home where I can't keep an eye on him for most of the day.
     
  9. maestralina

    maestralina New Egg

    6
    0
    7
    Mar 3, 2014
    I have a video of him but I can't upload it as I do not have it on youtube or anything like that. I would be willing to email it to anyone who can help.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by