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Also posted in emergencies--listless cold chick, please help!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by iopele, May 19, 2007.

  1. iopele

    iopele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2007
    Texas
    I posted this in the Emergencies thread, but I know this loop often has really knowledgable people in it so wanted to repost it here.

    One of my 5 day old Araucana chicks was lying outside their bedding box when I got home--I'd been gone about 3 hours and it was fine when I left. It was lying beside their waterer but didn't look wet or like it'd gotten squished or anything. It did feel very cold in my hands when I picked it up. It kicked a little when I lifted it but went still again, and isn't moving around when I put it right under the heat lamp to warm it up. All the other chicks are fine.

    I don't know what to check or do for it. There's no obvious injuries. It's been one of the pasty ones, but I've been cleaning butts twice a day and it's not pasted up now because I put Vaseline on all their vents (that's why its butt looks funny in the pics). I thought pasted butts take a day or two to really hurt a chicken, not a few hours, anyway? Here are a couple of pictures if that helps:

    edited to remove pictures of the dying chick [​IMG]

    This chick has been doing just fine until now. The paper towels look really dirty right now but I changed them just last night, so I don't know if the poop on the towels caused it? They've had 1 part pedialyte to 2 parts water in their waterer since yesterday afternoon. This one and two others were having problems with pasty butts, so I coated their vents with Vaseline to keep it from sticking. Can't remember where I read that hint. These were mailed and had a really bad journey but they've been here since Thurs night. Is stress a factor still?

    As it's warmed up some, it moves a little bit more, but mostly just flops one way or the other, usually going belly-up and unable to turn back over. It's now clicking its beak with every breath. I tried dribbling a few drops of water into its mouth and it seemed to swallow them, but when I put it back down, the water drooled right back out. I don't see anything in its mouth. (For those who remember the choking chick, this is a different chick.)

    What do I do besides keeping it warm? How can I help it pull through? Help! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2007
  2. iopele

    iopele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2007
    Texas
    The chick just died. [​IMG] I just can't understand why!

    I'm wracking my brains to try and figure out what could've happened. It's been one of the most active chicks from the very start, and last night when I was taking pictures, it was running around and doing just fine. Before I left at 2pm, I'd been petting and playing with them all and they were all chirping and doing great. What happened??? [​IMG]

    Does anyone know if having Pedialyte in the water might've poisoned it or something? Someone suggested it because the chicks were so stressed during their long journey in the box from Indiana (thanks ever so, Post Office, for losing my chicks). The only other thing I can think of is that maybe it got a bit of the wood shavings caught somewhere internally? The shavings are all covered up, but the chicks have managed to scrape some out over the paper towels and they play with the pieces.

    Any ideas anyone has will be very, very appreciated.
     
  3. Barnyard Dawg

    Barnyard Dawg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 7, 2007
    Northern California
    I have never used Pedialyte and will never use it, read the link below for cautions. I use raw unfiltered ACV.

    http://www.cagenbird.com/vinegar.htm

    http://www.pedialyte.com/faqresources/faq.cfm

    Why Vinegar? Because it can be used medicinally, gets rid of poisons in the body, has disinfecting and cleaning properties and is a natural, nontoxic, biodegradable substance. That is, vinegar is an unadulterated food, a powerful cleansing agent and healing elixir---a naturally occurring antibiotic and antiseptic that fights germs and bacteria. We would be smart to make use of vinegar in our own lives and in our avian nurseries and breeding facilities. --- For a healthier, stronger, longer life for our animals and ourselves.

    Side Effects of Pedialyte:
    http://shop.safeway.com/corporate/safeway/wellness/healthnotes.asp?org=safeway&ContentID=1036502
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2007
  4. hencackle

    hencackle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2007
    Telford, TN
    I'm so sorry about your little chick, that's really sad.

    Just to be safe, change out all the bedding, wash out all the waterers and feed containers very well. If you are using a cardboard box, replace it with a new one (I don't know what your brooder set-up is)

    I was searching for more information for specific causes for pasting and I came across this about high brooding temps:
    Dehydration: The body of young chicks contain about 70% water. Continuous high temperature causes loss of water from the body and when this water loss reaches about 10% the chicks die due to dehydration.
    Pasting: This is another problem of high brooding temperature wherein feces block the vent, Pasting ultimately results in death.

    Is it possible that your chicks were too warm? If they spend most of their time away from the heat source or pant, then the heat needs to be adjusted by raising the lamp or changing to a different bulb.

    Stephanie
     
  5. iopele

    iopele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2007
    Texas
    That's very good advice, Stephanie. I've already changed out the waterers--one's brand new, had just bought it during the trip today where I came home to find the sick baby--and I bleached the other and rinsed it really well. I also took out all the bedding, both above and beneath the wire screen (1/4" hardware cloth to let their poop fall through). Didn't think about dumping the food, will do that now. I got rid of the box that had the paper towel-covered shavings completely and put down a thick pad of paper towels beneath the light, covering about 1/3rd of the brooder "floor space" for them to lie on instead. They seem to like that fine.

    I also raised the light bulb some just in case, and my thermometer says it's 91.9 right underneath it right now. (They need 90-95 the first week, right?) Taking out the bedding box meant that I also put up a couple of draft screens--just some cardboard attached to the outside of the brooder so they're not in a draft.

    I've spent the last 45 minutes watching them all closely and no one else is looking sick at all. Here's hoping that whatever happened to that baby was a fluke. True Araucanas are so hard to find, these will be next to impossible to replace until next year if more die! So far 5 of the 15 sent have died--4 in transit and now this one.

    Keeping fingers crossed that the rest of my babies make it!
     
  6. hencackle

    hencackle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2007
    Telford, TN
    You're right about the Araucanas being difficult to find so I understand your frustration right now. If I remember correctly they have a lower hatch rate due to a lethal gene--fewer chicks to sell.

    When I tried brooding "by the book" in terms of temperatures, my chicks were too hot and I had to adjust the lamp's height. Right now I have a hen raising 3 chicks (5 days old) and it was very cool today and they were running around the yard just fine. Of course my chicks weren't subjected to shipping stress, but this is an example of why the ideal temperature can be so confusing.
    Stephanie
     
  7. iopele

    iopele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2007
    Texas
    Quote:Yep, and also so few people raise them that breeders are hard to find, and the ones who do sell eggs or chicks often have pre-orders for months in advance of hatching season. I searched for about 2 months before I found Nancy, and waited another month for my turn to come up, then 3 weeks for them to hatch... we've been anticipating these babies for a long time, you might say.

    Good point on the ideal temperature, too. I've been looking at how the chicks arrange themselves around the brooder. I've got the light at one side of one end of the brooder (nearer one wall than the other) so they can move away if it's too warm. I did notice that they were far from the light last night, none under it, so I raised it some. Now they're sort of scattered around everywhere, some right under the light and some to the side and some running around the far end eating and drinking--so I guess it's about right now?

    (LOL, that one chick I photographed last night is sleeping propped against the wall again... what a silly baby! Whoops, it just tipped over as I was looking at it now... laughing my butt off here!!! They're so cute!)
     
  8. hencackle

    hencackle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2007
    Telford, TN
    Yes, it sounds like your light is placed in a good position. There is no substitute for observing how your chicks space themselves in their brooder.

    Ok, I have a good feeling about your situation now. Keep us posted.
    Stephanie
     

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