Brown Mucous/ Blood? in young chick stool

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by SesameSt.Chicks, Oct 22, 2009.

  1. SesameSt.Chicks

    SesameSt.Chicks Songster 8 Years

    Oct 21, 2009
    I just registered here (awesome website!), and I also just began raising 2 baby chicks (maybe 1 1/2 weeks -2 weeks old). I had 3 chicks, but 1 died.

    I was given these chicks as a gift from friends who live next to a person who keeps a bunch chickens - feral. Bertram has always been rough-feathered, and Cookie Monster has always been fluffy and strong. (By the way, I have no idea the gender of these chicks.) The 3rd chick, Ernie died from ?diarrhea?. When we first got the chicks, we were clueless and resourceless. With advice and guidance from people at the local feed store we got them some pullet starter, a poultry waterer and they're put them on newspaper in a containment away from predators, in the house. I check them about once every hour. We found out we need to keep the chicks under a lamp the night Ernie died. So, now, Bertram is in a box with food and water under a lamp. Cookie Monster began jumping as high as the edge of the 12in. high box, and so we put her in the dog kennel, with a little 'hide-out' box, with food and water - no light. (This was where all the birds were, before). She seems to be thriving there.

    We also separated the 2 because we noticed 1.Bertram had the 'toes' of one of his feet curling under and he was having trouble walking, and 2. his stool was not firm.

    Now Bertram is walking without curled-under toes, but is still not very steady on his feet. His stool is off-and-on very mucous-y with what appears to be thick, brown-ish blood, which sometimes accompanies, (sometimes doesn't) a brown poop. When it isn't that, his stool is brown, but frequently watery. I change the newspaper anytime there is a 'not-right' stool. Cookie Monster has the same problem, sometimes.

    He eats, and drinks, and we give Bertram some sugar water every day. We have tried giving all the birds small amounts of cooked oatmeal when they show signs of loose stools.

    We have NOT given them any wormer, medication, or anything else.

    I have read about coccidosis, but I don't think that is what they have.

    Cookie Monster is jumping and flapping and has a lot of her wing feathers in, but Bertram only has a few wing feathers and doesn't seem to have an interest in aerial manoevers.

    Do you have any suggestions on what to do about the strange bowel movements?

    How dangerous is this to the young chicks?
    Thank you!

  2. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Songster

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    Do a search for cocci in chicks. If they're not on medicated feed and poss. even if they are it's the likely problem for chicks of that age. It will kill them if not treated. Corid is good if you can find it otherwise sulmet. The chicks will do better together unless there is blood drawing aggression going on. Hope you get more responses soon. When poss. post earlier in the day before the East coast goes to bed, lots of good people over there. good luck with them!

    ETA: If you're feeding treats they need grit too. [​IMG]

    Cruise around the site and read the stickys at the top of this section and the one on raising chicks.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2009
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Sounds like some sort of internal upset. If it was cocci, it would also be with lethargic chicks. The brown stuff may be "cecal" poo which looks like melted chocolate.

    My guess is they didn't have a very nutritional start to life and may have other internal paracites.

    Make sure you are feeding them primarily "chick starter" or "chick grower" which is a balanced feed, and take out the treats until the stools become regular. If the problem persists, I would look into taking a sample to the vet to check for worms/paracites and treat accordingly.
  4. LuvinMyPeeps

    LuvinMyPeeps Songster

    Aug 22, 2008
    Powhatan, VA 23139
    IMO, I'd start them on Corid right away! I don't think it would hurt, just incase it's cocci. Once you see the bloody stools caused by cocci your whole flock can die very quickly.

  5. tulie13

    tulie13 Songster

    Feb 12, 2009
    NW Florida
    You mentioned you were on "pullet starter", I don't think that's the same as "chick starter". Chick starter has extra protein in it vs. regular chicken feed, and the chicks need this for good growth. You should see if you can find some "Medicated Chick Starter" and switch to that as their sole food source - it has the amprolium in it to knock down coccidiosis and also the correct nutrition for chicks.

    Good luck, keep us updated!
  6. SesameSt.Chicks

    SesameSt.Chicks Songster 8 Years

    Oct 21, 2009
    Thanks you so much for your quick responses! I appreciate all the tips.

    From looking at some more pictures and hearing more descriptions, cecal stool sounds really likely. It seems that they have it at the correct frequency and the description matches to a T. Thanks for the lead.

    Bertram is fairly active today. I haven't given any more oatmeal or sugar water to him.

    There is no foul play between the 2, but we feel more comfortable keeping Bertram under the light, which we can't do if he goes with Cookie Monster. Maybe in another day or 2 Bertram will be stronger and he can go with his mature sibling. He is not lethargic, and he seems to have a lot more energy now than previously.

    I also think that a poor nutritional start and worms are likely, however, I'm not sure how much that is affecting them...

    Bertram still has some non-cecal soft stools. I took a pic today. Is an occasional soft one cause for concern?
  7. feathersnuggles

    feathersnuggles Songster

    Sep 4, 2009
    Smash up & offer some cooked egg yolk, if you want to give a nutritional treat once in a while, especially for a chick who needs to thrive. The yolk doesn't require grit for digestion and is a good protein boost.

  8. sammi

    sammi Songster

    Dec 21, 2007
    Southeast USA
    it could be that Bertram is chilled...when they are not kept warm and are stressed they don't metabolize nutrients properly.
    how old are the chicks now?
    required temps:
    1st week..95 degrees..then 5 degrees less each week..
    no draft or wet.

    they should be on chick feed or chick starter, and chick vitamins don't hurt.
    a little cooked egg yolk and plain active culture yogurt doesn't hurt.

    it's a good idea to have a fecal test done at a vet..sometimes called a fecal float...just take a fresh sample. to be tested..
    I'm thinking they have either worms, chilling, or cocci.
    It's a good idea to have Corid or Sulmet on hand since cocci kills quick.
    Wazine 17 for worming..
  9. SesameSt.Chicks

    SesameSt.Chicks Songster 8 Years

    Oct 21, 2009
    Thank you for your advice. It has been determined that it is just cecal bowel movements that concerned me, (greenie that I am [​IMG]). They are both thriving and are getting bigger and bigger.

  10. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    All chickens have cecal poop every so often (few hours?) but it seems much more noticable with chicks! I guess it's because they're small they get it so much more frequently and omg it smells! Their normal poops aren't all that bad but that cecal stuff will stink even me out!

    Glad your chicks are doing better!

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