Baby chick severe illness-- less than a week old.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Avalongirl83, Mar 11, 2014.

  1. Avalongirl83

    Avalongirl83 Out Of The Brooder

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    I purchased 6 baby chicks from Tractor Supply 3 days ago. At first, all seemed well. Chicks were lively, eating and drinking normally and running around the brooder. No one was huddling in front of the heat lamp nor huddling away. 2 days after purchase, I noticed one chick acting lethargic, hanging by the edge of the brooder, somewhat close to the lamp, not running around when I opened the brooder like the rest of the chicks. I immediately moved it to a sick brooder which is slightly warmer and got the "Save a Chick" probiotic. Within an hour of seperating this chick, it became unable to stand without falling to one side, arching its head back almost to its tail and falling over. It chirps loudly and keeps its eyes closed most of the time but will open one eye when handled. I have been keeping it warmer, feeding it the save a chick solution through a dropper, and keeping her calm allowing her to rest. Its been 24 hours since I noticed the first symptoms. None of the other babies have shown any decline (no loud chirping, they eat, drink, poop and run around). The sick chick has not pooped since being in the sick brooder but hasnt eaten either. No pasty butt. When offered water she barely opens her beak to accept and can be heard making a rattling sound when trying to drink and sometimes when sleeping. We've been practicing good biosecurity (take care of grown hens outside first, then wash, then care for healthy chicks, wash and care for sick) so I am hoping we can limit the spread. Is there anything else I should be doing for this sick baby? Any idea if this is an illness or simply failure to thrive?

    Any advice or opinion is appreciated.
     
  2. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Vitamin b is the only thing left that you could try. Sometimes there is just a failure to thrive and there is nothing left you could do. Not pooping is not a good sign and it isn't big enough to have a blockage. I'm thinking failure to thrive over illness because no one else is showing symptoms of anything.
     
  3. Sarevan

    Sarevan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would try poultry nutri drench, mix of vitamins that has B and selenium, may be wry neck. Also dropping liquified feed into mouth. So hard to feed when so tiny. Hope she didn't aspirate.

    Try making her a nest to keep her upright, paper towels or towel bunched up around her to upright position. Hope she snaps out of it.
     
  4. Avalongirl83

    Avalongirl83 Out Of The Brooder

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    Well the "good news" if you can call it that is that we got our first poop in 24. No blood but some very thick black sludge.

    Also, we've been using the vitamins pictured. I sure hope this baby comes put of it, but if he doesn't, I'm hoping failure to thrive so we only have one poor baby go through this. :(

    [​IMG]
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  5. foreverlearning

    foreverlearning Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pooping now is a better sign. Keep doing everything you are doing and we are [​IMG] over here for you.
     
  6. Avalongirl83

    Avalongirl83 Out Of The Brooder

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    I've been putting the tip of her beak to the medicine dropper and she has been opening it slightly to take in some of the water. She kind of makes a gurggling sound when she does it. Truly hoping we can pull this baby through.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. Avalongirl83

    Avalongirl83 Out Of The Brooder

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    Quick question: Could this be a case of Wry neck?
     
  8. lgigleheart

    lgigleheart New Egg

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    I am having the same thing happening to one of my chicks from TSC, only one in the 6. All the others seem to be fine now. Can you tell me which TSC you got them from? Same as you I separated the ill chick and trying to nurse it back to health for the last 12 hours to no avail. It is now laying on it's side with shallow breathing and I am loosing hope she will recover. I am thinking about calling TSC to find out if there have been other chicks, I am worried about it having a disease that might just have not yet showed up in the other chicks.
     
  9. Avalongirl83

    Avalongirl83 Out Of The Brooder

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    I am in southern Maryland. Is that your area too? TS called the farmer where they got it and he said "it's just cold." I don't think so. The first 24 hours were very very hard. Here is what we did. As soon as I noticed the first symptoms and moved it, I started with the vitamins pictured in the water right away. At first, getting the chick to drink was very hard. I used the very tip of my finger nail at the tip of her beak to open just slightly so she could feel the water on her beak. From this, I got her to swallow TINY bits of water. Next we got the "SAVE A CHICK" from TS and started getting her to drink. Getting her to drink was hard, but after a while she would open her beak very slightly and take small sips. Keeping her warm was a must. She was cheeping loudly and so listless I put her on my chest like a baby and held her with one hand cupped over her body for about 4 hours. Within minutes of the holding she stopped shaking (maybe she needed LOTS of extra warmth because I couldn't get the brooder over 95?) and stopped peeping and went to sleep. I then gave her water with the vitamins, I put her in the brooder and she slept for about 4 hours. Then, I took her out and gave her the water mix again this time with the save a chick. I would take the childrens advil syringe and put the very tip of her beak to the end of it. Then I would slightly depress the plunger so that the water was bulging out but not dripping. I was so worried about her aspirating. She would again open her beak slightly and take very small sips. I would try to get about half a tablespoon in her before putting her back in the brooder. Tonight, about 36 hours later, she is showing some improvement. She is making an effort to stand on her own and if you put her on her feet, she can stand for a few minutes. We got a poop out of her (first in 24 hours) and she is more willing to drink now. She still isn't taking solid foods and I am not pushing the issue since water was so hard for her. Her neck is a little less crooked but I don't think we are out of the woods just yet. I am continuing to go back to the brooder and give her water mix every couple of hours alternating between the save a chick and vitamin mixtures.

    Obviously, I am keeping her seperated and keeping a close eye on the healthy 5 for ANY sign of a drop in energy. Keep me posted on how your baby is doing and I will do the same. Its hard to see them in such distress.
     
  10. lgigleheart

    lgigleheart New Egg

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    Thank you for all this information! I am in Indiana, so obviously not the same TSC...
    It is good to know about the chick sleeping for 4 hours, I thought this was a sign she was dying for sure, but she is still breathing.
    I have her close to the brooding lamp keeping her nice and warm. I will keep checking on her and trying to get her to take her "medicine".
    Hope your chick pulls through and no others show these symptoms. Sounds like you are getting some good improvement, I am happy to get this information on how you are caring for her.

    Take care and good luck!
     

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