any ideas for my crippled silkie?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by NewChickenMom, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. NewChickenMom

    NewChickenMom Songster

    May 16, 2008
    Omaha, NE
    she must've broken her elbow joint when hatching or maybe she's just deformed. her left leg elbow joint is 3x as big as her other one and the leg is twisted from the elbow down. she walks by hobbling around and also uses her wing to balance. i got her free with some other chicks and 2 adult breeding pairs because the lady figured she's just die. she's now almost a month old, but as she gets bigger, her balance problem gets worse. is there any hope for her to have quality of life? my brooder has a soft floor and she gets around fine, eats, drinks, poops. i just don't know what to do.
    her good foot vs. her crippled one
  2. She may have had spraddle leg in the beginning that wasn't corrected. It may be difficult, but I would try taping her toes to a very small piece of thin cardboard. That will help to keep them flat when she puts her foot down. In the beginning you may have to only put it on for a few hours a couple of times a day if she seems uncomfortable. Gradually increase the amount of time she is wearing it and it is likely that her leg will eventually turn.
  3. Smoky73

    Smoky73 Lyon Master

    Feb 8, 2007
    I had one like this, but mine got like that due to an injury. It was a silkie and the feathers got stuck to another chick overnight and the other was dragging the silkie around by its leg. It never got better. After 3 months, she couldnt even hardly stand and was the size of a month old and she would have been about 4 months. I had hubby put her down as her quality of life was nothing and she was suffering.
  4. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    I had a chick like that who wasn't born that way, but was stepped on by mom. We took her to the vet and he did a little operation on her to try and get that tendon back to where it should be, but it popped back.
    We ended up putting her (him?) down at around two months because it was obvious that the chick wouldn't have a good life.
  5. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    Can you rotate the leg to a more "normal position" when you hold it with out creating pain? If so I would take stiff piece of 1"styrofoam etc. and make a wedge shape out of it to help support the leg and joint. I would then try to rotate the leg and tape it to the wedge,or vet wrap it etc. You could make a pattern for the wedge by having someone hold the chick with the good leg standing on a surface and take a slip of paper and trace the angle of the bottom side of the good leg from surface behind heel to joint. This would be angle of the top of wedge. Draw down to surface from joint to be the back of wedge, then connect straight across the bottom. This would be a paper pattern for your wedge"shoe". I would do it at night when it's prone to sleep more at first.

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    Last edited: Jul 2, 2008
  6. Great idea, chickenzoo! Let us know if you try one of these methods. You know, one of those makeup wedge sponges would work great.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2008

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