Chick having siezures? Almost 5 week old Black Australorp

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by RM44, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. RM44

    RM44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2009
    Woodstock, Georgia
    Well, my chicks will be 5 weeks old on Wednesday, and as of yesterday, when I moved them to a new, larger pen, I noticed strange behavior in one of the BAs. The chick will do fine, walking around, pecking the ground, etc., and then will just fall over, and push itself along on the ground, with wings out, or flapping, and the chick sort of half rolling around on the ground. It almost looks like the chick is trying to take a dirt bath, except that the "episode" seems to render the chick unable to get back on it's feet while having the attack. When I first saw it, I thought the chick was just trying to take a dirt bath. However, it was odd enough that I had to have a closer look. While the chick is on the ground flopping around, the others walk on it, step on it's wings, etc., and I was able to go right over and pick it up while it laid there not moving (usually they run from me if I try to pick them up). After a few seconds, the chick snaps out of the attack and goes back to walking around like nothing happened. Today I noticed that, while it was flopping around, it craned it's neck around and under it's body, in a very contorted way, and after the episode was over and the chick stood back up, it continued to tremble and shake it's head and shoulders (sort of like Kathryn Hepburn used to do in the final stages of the disease she had).

    Do chickens get epilepsy? If not, what would you think this problem might be, and what should I try to do about it?

    Much thanks in advance for your help/advice.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2010
  2. NewHobbyForMe

    NewHobbyForMe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 10, 2009
    Missouri
    It could be Wry Neck. It is a vitamin deficency. My chicks head would turn upside down and all the back to her tail. I have alot of info about it. If you want you can email me. Get vitamin E and Poly Vi-Sol baby vitamins without iron. Good luck.
     
  3. RM44

    RM44 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2009
    Woodstock, Georgia
    Thanks NewHobby! I thought about wry neck too, and it is still on my "suspect" list. Since I ordered these as "day olds" and wanted to be sure they were fed healthy and well from the start, I ordered a chick vitamin called "Vi-Tal" from the hatchery. It is described as a multi-vitamin with small amount of electrolytes and is recommended in a stronger concentration for the first few days, and then a very weak concentration as a daily supplement. I have been using it in their water every day at the weaker concentration of 1/4 tsp per gallon.

    Today I sat down there to observe them a while, and I saw this bird walk around, eyes clear, picking the ground. I thought I'd feel better if I saw it eat, and it must have read my mind b/c it went right over to the feed and started eating! Then I thought I'd feel better if I saw it drink, and again, it read my mind and went over to the water container and drank! I thought maybe it was just a temporary thing that had passed and right as I thought that (and about a minute after it consumed the water), I saw it start to quiver and shake, and then it flipped over on it's side, head twisted around and then under it's body, and it flapped around, then laid very still on the ground for about 20-30 seconds. Ugh! Then it turned over on it's belly, slowly stood back up, head and shoulders trembling for about 15-20 seconds, then started walking around normally again. Very strange.

    This particular bird also doesn't seem to socialize normally, choosing instead to rest alone, and walk around alone. It doesn't "play" with the others, doesn't run in spurts around the coop, doesn't startle, it's just mellow and slow.

    I believe it to be a rooster, as it has already developed a very large comb and waddles before 4 weeks of age, and stands a full head and shoulders higher than the other 5 Black Australorps I have. I was planning to give it to my preacher, who will take 4 of the chicks off my hands. My preacher said she'd like a rooster, so I was hoping to give this one to her. I'm wondering if I should, or if I should cull it? If it is in fact wry neck, does the chicken tend to have that tendancy for the rest of it's life, or is it a one time shot? And does the tendancy for that pass through the eggs?
     
  4. NewHobbyForMe

    NewHobbyForMe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 10, 2009
    Missouri
    This sure has been a long road to care for a chicken but she is FINALLY back outside like a real chicken sure be. Her Wry Neck was so bad that she layed on her side for two days, she did not eat or drink. The muscles in her neck twisted it so far to the right that she would fall over on her side. I wrapped her in a bath towel put her in a box in the bathroom and was waiting for her to die. She finally started to eat a little and that's when I read on BYC about the vitamins. Started her on E capsules 400 iu and vitamin B12 twice a day on some scrambled egg or water and oatmeal with Poly Vi-Sol vitamins. That is all she would eat. No water for several days, I guess she got enough water from the water and oatmeal. This started before Christmas and she just went back outside Jan. 4 or 5th. Just wanted to send an update for anyone trying to help with pet.
     

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