3 week olds acting sick-swelled belly

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mradam, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. mradam

    mradam In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2008
    Eastern Missouri
    We have 9 3-week old chicks we got from my son's kindergarden class after they hatched. They were doing fine until today I noticed a few (4) of them have a very swelled belly (below the vent) and are not as active as the others.

    Their butts are clean (no pasty butt) and the are at the right temp for their age-85 degrees. They also are getting fresh food and water twice a day.

    The swelled area is affecting their walking and I don't know what to do for them.

    Thanks for any and all help.

    Last edited: Apr 20, 2009

  2. barnwife

    barnwife Songster

    Feb 21, 2009
    central Texas
    I am not an expert, but maybe some plain yogurt mixed with apple cider vinegar?

    That seems to elp quite a few folks on here with bum/and crop problems.

    A warm water soak, maybe some epsom salts added and soak their bums, too. They're obviously "full up" of something, and its young for eggs.

    I wish I could help more!
    good Luck!
  3. patyrdz

    patyrdz The Madd Hatcher

    Feb 26, 2009
    Southern Pines, NC
    I would like to know the answer to this question. I have a chick that looks a little like yours, but not quite as bad! Are yours acting ok? Mine seems fine, I was thinking it just looked big because he has a bald bottom from having pasty butt. Now I am not so sure!
  4. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    I've not seen anything like it so I'm guessing - but they look like they are stopped up. You said they get fresh food and water twice a day but does that mean they have food and water in their brooder all day/night long 24/7 - if not, they should. If they don't have access to water 24/7 they may not have enough fluid to process their food. What are you feeding them?

    What bedding is that in the picture - is it straw/hay? They may be eating it and getting stopped up. Have they been pooping normally?

    My suggestion would be to take them off the bedding material and use newspaper or an old towel. I know newspaper shouldn't be used when they are newly hatched but yours are 3 weeks old and won't get spraddle leg at this point. However, I use old towels for brooder floors.

    For the chicks with the huge bottoms, try turning them upside down and dropping some olive oil on their vent and gently massage. Then give them some olive oil to drink - a couple of drops each. You may have to gently open their beak and put a drop in the front of the lower beak and let them swallow - don't try to force it down their throat. Also soak some bread in olive oil and feed that to them.

    I hope this works, they look pretty swelled up.
  5. Slywoody

    Slywoody Songster

    Mar 18, 2009
    What kind of feed? What kind of treats? Is feed different than what they were getting at school. How long you had them? The more info you can give this site, the better chance you'll get a remedy. Have they been eating the bedding? What kind of bedding did they have at school?
  6. Robin'sBrood

    Robin'sBrood Flock Mistress

    May 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2009
  7. mradam

    mradam In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2008
    Eastern Missouri
    -I have had them for 2 weeks now.
    - The first week they were on paper towel bedding and now they are on hay bedding. At school they were just on a paper towel.
    -They always have food (chick starter) and have never run out of water.
    -They never have treats.
    -They were fed chick starter, from the same store even, at school.
    -I have never seen them eat the bedding. They know right where the food is and run to it when I refill it.
    -Their poop seems to be fine.

  8. I'm sorry hun, but they aren't sick. They are meat birds. Huggles.
  9. mradam

    mradam In the Brooder

    Mar 5, 2008
    Eastern Missouri
    Unfortunately, the one with the very swelled belly died. But, the others are all acting normal again. And also, I think they ARE meat birds! It didn't even occur to me to consider that, but their legs are huge and they are growing like MAD.

    I don't know why the local 4H would give the kindergarten classes meat birds knowing they will be going home with some. The school wasn't told their breed, and didn't ask. Maybe they were cheaper or more readily available or something. Not to say we won't keep them until it's time, we just weren't expecting to have to explain to our son what will happen to them when they grow up.

    Anyway, thanks for the comments and replies. This site is great!

  10. Glenda L Heywood

    Glenda L Heywood Songster

    Apr 11, 2009
    They look like it may be time to do this
    If hey are meat birds cornish cross
    as they look
    they will be dieing of Ascities or water belly
    so here is the thing to do

    (1 first feeding 5 an
    (2nd feeding 2PM
    and then when that amount is gone by 1-2 hrs later
    (3 take the feeders out and let them rest and only have water

    (4 you have got to stop the "wate belly" from enclosing the heart and killing them

    they will straighten up by you immediately doing this proceedure

    rA-Z Poultry Disease Index
    A pneu-movirus infection in turkeys and chickens affecting birds from about 10 ... A bacterial infection associated with respiratory disease in chickens and turkeys. ...

    members.tripod.com/poultryworld/dis_dir.htm - 100k - Cached
    Chapter 24

    The term 'flip over' syndrome accurately describes this condition of acute heart failure. The cause is unknown but is often seen along with fatty liver and kidney syndrome in flocks growing well, about three weeks before slaughter. Mortality may be in the region of 0.5 per cent.

    this site has several articles n it
    you can read

    ascities poultry. metabolic disorders in poultry. sodium ascites broiler. ascites poultry ... In broiler chickens, the condition often leads to death. ...

    scribd.com/doc/4013236/Ascites-in-Commercial-Broiler-Poultry-and-It... - 101k

    try the method of cutting back on feed as I hve suggested.
    I know from raising the broilers this is the way they act if too much fed
    they just eat and drink and do not move around much

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