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3 wk. chicks and cedar chips

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chicks4kids, Apr 26, 2009.

  1. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    I have 3 week old Barred Rocks and just picked them up yesterday, put cedar chips down (which I have now learned is a huge no no). One our little girls seems out of it, just standing around under the light sometimes, not eating or drinking, just wanting to snuggle and sleep. My theory is that it was the cedar chips. We have stuck straw down now. Any ideas to help her boost her immunities or energy levels, or will it just work itself out now??

    Thanks.
     
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    All you can do is let her breathe clean air and hope it works itself out. Not sure if it will do any permanent damage since you have remedied it now.
     
  3. RIgirl

    RIgirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 15, 2009
    What I read was that cedar chips could have respiratory affects later in life. As in, if you put them on as chicks, later on they might develop problems. Seeing as it was a short period of time and not in their earliest infancy, I would cross your fingers and hope for the best at this point.
     
  4. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    Thanks so much! Since this one happens to be my oldest daughters favorite, I have explained to her what has happened, how the cedar may have affected the little girl, so that she can be prepared just in case she doesn't get better. She is sad, but also hopeful. And out there constantly checking on her...aaw to be a mother...

    Again, thanks for your input!!
     
  5. k2chickens

    k2chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    New Castle, Indiana
    why are cedar chips such a no no??
     
  6. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    Well, from what I've read, it's the oils in the cedar that are toxic to them. Haven't found much more info than that...
     
  7. Roy

    Roy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 20, 2007
    Central Illinois
    I had my hens in Cedar mulch for over a year before I knew anything about cedar. Now they are in Pine and suffering no ill effects...
     
  8. jubylives

    jubylives Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2007
    Central Iowa
    Sounds to me like they are just tired and cold. There's no real evidence that cedar chips are deadly to chickens old or young. That being said they do have new lungs and anything can irritate them. Just do what you are doing.


    jeremy
     
  9. xadika

    xadika Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    ...
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2012
  10. Akane

    Akane Overrun With Chickens

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    Jun 15, 2008
    What I read was that cedar chips could have respiratory affects later in life. As in, if you put them on as chicks, later on they might develop problems. Seeing as it was a short period of time and not in their earliest infancy, I would cross your fingers and hope for the best at this point.

    Cedar chips can cause acute respiratory failure. Death can come in days under certain circumstances. It may not always show directly as a respiratory infection either. Cedar chips also cause irritation to the eyes and damage to internal organs especially the liver. Sometimes all you'll see is an increase in water intake and sometimes an animal will go from fine to completely inactive and gasping within 24hrs. It depends how fresh/strong the shavings are, how small of area the animal is in, how much ventilation there is, the size/species/health/etc.. of the animal... It's hard to say exactly how much and how quickly it will cause problems in various situations. Some may show no obvious symptoms but over many years slowly decline in health and end up living a shorter lifespan. That is why I completely avoid cedar shavings no matter the situation.

    About all you can do is wait to see if their bodies get rid of the toxins. Make sure there is plenty of fresh air and no ammonia build up from their waste. You want to limit the stress on their respiratory system. Using something more absorbent under the straw would probably help. Even if it's just paper towels. Pine pellets are my usual choice. They are strongly heat treated which eliminates nearly all the oils and there probably isn't anything more absorbent. Since they may have already been stressed by the cedar shavings though I'd probably invest in a bag of paper based pellets or bedding. A bit expensive to use long term or frequently but for one batch of chicks until they recover I'd find it worth it. You can find paper based beddings at any petstore and sometimes places like walmart.

    I'd probably dip the chick's beak to encourage it to drink and maybe put some karo syrup in the water to boost energy. If the chick doesn't start to recover and shows signs of respiratory problems like heavy breathing or gunked up eyes it might have developped an infection which would require antibiotics.​
     

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