5 week old chick with curled middle toes?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Woofless, May 20, 2010.

  1. Woofless

    Woofless Out Of The Brooder

    98
    4
    41
    Apr 7, 2010
    SD
    Was out in the chicken pen yesterday (sitting on a straw bale watching "Chicken TV") when I noticed one of my younger, 5 week old black (breed unknown) chickies had funny looking feet.

    I don't recall noticing this before with him (her?), and I have spent a good deal of time with the chicks, outside, at regular intervals as they grew. I hope I would have noticed this....I guess it is possible I missed it but I don't think I did.

    Two toes- the middle and the innermost toe....on BOTH his feet, curl inward towards his body when he walks. It's almost as if the toe bone rolled on its side....with each step, the toes flex and curl towards his body. There are no blisters, worn spots or caked-on spots of poo (though I imagine that could change as he gets older)

    He walks & scratches fairly well....the legs themselves don't seem to be bent. Can't perch all that well, but I have a huge pen available for them so he has tons of room to find his own "space" and I will make some high "resting spots" that he can access by walking if need be. We're calling him Gobbles for now....after Timmy's "special needs" turkey friend on South Park [​IMG]

    I did a little research and I'm not sure if its a birth defect or a nutritional issue....a lot of the info I found seemed to pertain to newly-hatched chicks. None of my other 28 chicks (ages 4-8 weeks) have this issue. Any thoughts? Is this fixable at his age or should I let it go if it doesn't cause him any trouble? Is this likely to have an impact on his quality of life as he ages?

    UGH photobucket is down for maintenance right now, I have a pic I took today but I will have to post it tomorrow evening when I get home. In the meantime, I'd really appreciate any thoughts!! Thanks!!
     
  2. crittersitter

    crittersitter Chillin' With My Peeps

    218
    0
    109
    Feb 23, 2010
    Westchester County,NY
    I don't have an answer but let's bump you to see if someone else chimes in.
     
  3. JestersEye

    JestersEye Chillin' With My Peeps

    561
    4
    144
    Aug 12, 2008
    Mullica Twp., NJ
    I had one hatch like that, but it turned out fine. At first, it kept rolling over and had trouble learning to stand up... but within a few hours it got the hang of it. I tried to make a "boot" for it to help straighten its toes, but it kept coming off so I gave up. Its now full grown and can jump up on things, perches fine, and definately moves fast enough to evade danger. If it's getting around all right, I wouldn't worry about it in the least! [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2010
  4. Woofless

    Woofless Out Of The Brooder

    98
    4
    41
    Apr 7, 2010
    SD
    Thanks! That's about what my chickens' toes look like. Here's the pic I was trying to post:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. JestersEye

    JestersEye Chillin' With My Peeps

    561
    4
    144
    Aug 12, 2008
    Mullica Twp., NJ
    Wow, the toes on your chick look exactly like my bird's! I'd say that your chick will do just fine, judging from how well mine has turned out. Like you, I was concerned at first; but soon realized that my worries were misplaced. It might be a wee bit more difficult for your chick, since it appears to have bent toes on both feet; but it should get more accustomed and acclimated with time and experience. It's never known anything else for comparison, so it will learn to use what it has the best it can. It'll likely surprise you in the end! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2010
  6. mammat

    mammat Chillin' With My Peeps

    473
    11
    143
    Mar 29, 2009
    columbus ohio
    I have 5 four week old chicks and just noticed that only one has 2 bent toes. I know they were not like this before! I spend time with them everyday. It is a silver spangled hamburg and the lightest of the bunch.. I have two very heavy cochins, a RIR and a Orph with no problems. I dont understand how the heavy ones are fine but this little guy got twisty toes? Dont know if I should try to fix it or leave it alone. She seems to do fine so I guess I will leave it alone.
     
  7. cochinGurl

    cochinGurl Chillin' With My Peeps

    454
    13
    136
    May 11, 2010
    bellingham
    was he/she hatched in a incubator or under a hen? the defect might have been caused by a spike in temature while in the developmental stages in the egg.
     
  8. KKatknap

    KKatknap Chillin' With My Peeps

    811
    0
    136
    Nov 15, 2009
    Albany, OR
    There's also info on it being a vitamin deficiency. B maybe? Can't remember.

    I have a little 20-wk-old who has had a crooked toe on each foot since I noticed them at @ 4 weeks old. She's a feisty little devil who has worked her way up the "big girl" pecking order after integration. Don't worry about those feet. They do just fine with 'em. [​IMG]

    ETA - My biggest concern for her would be how hard it would be for her to roost. Again - no problem!
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2010

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by