Chick Leg Problems (URGENT)

anniebananie

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
31
1
34
Oak Harbor, WA
I know I already posted this, but I really need an answer before it's too late.

One of the chicks I hatched was missing the back toe (one used almost like a thumb). She is a week old now, and her leg has been splaying out backwards (the one without the toe). I thought she just needed to get stronger, but leaving it just seemed to make it worse. One of her legs is fine; the other one is pushed out so the toes are facing the other foot and her heel is facing outwards. I think she may have done this to compensate for missing a toe, or maybe she was born like this. Either way, is it too late for me to splint the foot? If not, any suggestions as to how?

Thanks alot,
Annie
 

ChooksChick

BeakHouse's Mad Chicken Scientist
11 Years
Aug 17, 2008
7,738
155
341
Larry, KS
My Coop
I don't have personal experience, but search for 'spraddle leg' as I know I've seen a lot of it on here.

Best of luck!
 

horsejody

Squeaky Wheel
11 Years
Feb 11, 2008
6,923
38
271
Waterloo, Nebraska
Splint it with a bandaid. It will straighten out. Do a search, there are plenty of posts describing how to do it.

This what I did. I took a regular size bandaid and cut it in half horizontally. For a chick that is a few days old the width of the gauze part is a good between the legs width. The sticky parts were wrapped around each leg to hold them together. Here is a picture of Gimley. He is also wearing orthopedic boots because he had curled toes. Yes, he did learn to walk in his braces.


ETA; Gimley is wearing white medical tape in this picture, but wore a bandaid for a while too.
 
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joy

Songster
12 Years
Aug 17, 2007
107
10
144
Lancashire England
Quote:If it's NOT spraddle leg and she was born like this take heart in knowing I have an adult cjicken and apart from not roosting she does just fine and more than holds her own!
 
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horsejody

Squeaky Wheel
11 Years
Feb 11, 2008
6,923
38
271
Waterloo, Nebraska
Quote:If it's NOT spraddle leg and she was born like this take heart in knowing I have an adult cjicken and apart from not roosting she does just fine and more than holds her own!


I would guess that the missing toe caused her to slip easier and get spraddle leg.
 

anniebananie

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
31
1
34
Oak Harbor, WA
Ok, thanks everybody for the advice. I applied the splint this morning before I had to go to school, but she fell over flat on her face, so I took it off. Any suggestions on how to immobilize her? My family doesn't really have time to watch her a lot, so she's have to stay in the brooder. If it doesn't go well, it's not that big of a deal, because she seems quite able to limp around and even pecks at my fingers when I go to pick her up, the fiesty little chicky.
 

horsejody

Squeaky Wheel
11 Years
Feb 11, 2008
6,923
38
271
Waterloo, Nebraska
She will not be able to walk right away. She will have to learn how to stand with the splints.

ETA: just watch her and hand feed and water her until she learns.
 
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Jenski

Songster
11 Years
Jun 17, 2008
2,177
18
181
Middle Tennessee
You might try letting her walk on thick carpet several times a day (old bath mat). You will have to get her up and encourage her to walk. After a few days you can try shorter carpet, then paper towel-covered shavings, then shavings alone. Three times a day for at least a few minutes should be a good start for her "therapy" sessions.

Good luck!
 

anniebananie

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 8, 2009
31
1
34
Oak Harbor, WA
Ok, update time: I applied the splint this afternoon and watched her for a while. Remarkably, she managed to stumble around, eat, drink, and even keep up with the other nine chickies! I haven't taken off the splint yet, because I don't want to mess with it, but it seems to be working.
 

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