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chick gaping mouth open

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Ur-ur-ur-urrr, May 1, 2016.

  1. Ur-ur-ur-urrr

    Ur-ur-ur-urrr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a 4 day old RIR chick that raises it's head and gapes it's mouth open. It's been with it's sibling in the brooder, and it has been eating and drinking just fine. All the others are doing great. I first noticed it when it would get under the heat plate and it wouldn't lay down... then it's head would slowly drop until it's beak was resting on the floor. Soon after, it started gaping. I don't see anything lodged in it's mouth or throat, but after examining it this morning, I found a hard knot on the left side of it's stomach between the keel bone and thigh. It feels to be close to 1/2" long (running parallel with the keel). I first noticed it by the (approximately) 1/4" lump in the skin on the end (rear). I wondered if it might be an impacted bowel, but it has pooped, and it looks normal. Here's a video of how the chick is behaving:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I would examine it's crop (chick's right side upper chest) to see if it is impacted. It may have eaten pine shavings or bedding. Treatment for that is to give it lots of water, and massage it's crop to try to get it to pass. Make sure that it's vent is not clogged with poop, and keep it cleaned. Pasty butt can stop up the plumbing and they can die. It usually is from dehydration or shipping stress.
     
  3. Ur-ur-ur-urrr

    Ur-ur-ur-urrr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the reply, Eggcessive. I have checked it's crop, or at least tried to, but I don't feel anything there. I've massaged the entire area just to be on the safe side. I don't use pine shavings for the first week of chicks going into the brooder just to avoid impacted crops, so it's certainly not shavings. I used absorbent pads, and I've had some light picking at it, but not to an extent that I think it would cause an impaction. It's been drinking water with Sav-A-Chick Probiotics, but I don't know how often. I have it in my incubator now with Sav-A-Chick Electrolytes and Vitamins. Pasty butt has been an issue in the past with my Barred Rock chicks, but I haven't had the first sign of pasty butt with these chicks.

    Since the last massage, even though I never felt it's crop, it seems to be doing a good bit better. It still arches it's head and gapes it's mouth, but nothing like it has been. It does seem a bit more alert, too. Thanks again for the reply!
     
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Interesting, never seen a chick do that. That lump on the left is probably the gizzard. Can you post a picture of it's poop?

    -Kathy
     
  5. Ur-ur-ur-urrr

    Ur-ur-ur-urrr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the reply, Kathy. Didn't think about the gizzard, though I thought it strange that it formed a lump in the skin while I had the chick laying on it's back. Hopefully that's all it is... [​IMG]

    These are the pics you requested. This has happened in the past 3 hours...

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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  7. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    If you can, wet the feathers and take a picture of the lump.

    -Kathy
     
  8. Ur-ur-ur-urrr

    Ur-ur-ur-urrr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the chick in my IncuView (forced air) @ 95F, and it's on a dry towel, so it dries rather quickly.

    Sorry about your chick... [​IMG]

    I wet the feathers, and could get the lump to come up if I rubbed it's belly and it moved it's left leg back. As soon as I'd get my camera on it, the chick would move and it would go back in. Probably right... just a gizzard.
     
  9. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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  10. Ur-ur-ur-urrr

    Ur-ur-ur-urrr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I haven't had the pleasure of observing a days old chick's gizzard... [​IMG] ... so I'll take your word for it. I put it back with the others, and it's not gaping like it was before. It eats, then acts like it has a little difficulty swallowing. It shakes it's head like it has something hung in it's mouth or throat, but I didn't see anything lodged in it's mouth earlier. It drinks a bit slower than the others, but at least it's eating and drinking, so hopefully that's a good sign. I massaged it's crop, and it think I finally felt it. Whatever it was, it felt soft and squishy. I'll keep massaging it several times a day through the next week and see what happens. Thanks again!!!
     

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