chick scratching feathers off - help

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by hoping4better, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. hoping4better

    hoping4better Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 22, 2010
    Middle Tennessee
    I've got one chick that keeps scratching at his neck and now has a significant bald spot on the back of it. The chicks are a bit over 3 weeks and I bed them in wheat straw, give them chicken starter feed, water them and include vitamins/electrolytes in their water. At first I though maybe mites, but none of the other chicks exhibit this behavior. Out of twenty all in the same brooder and same conditions this is the only one behaving this way and having this problem. At first I also thought maybe another chick was pecking his feathers off, but they really don't seem to be pecking each other at all. I tried to cover it in vaseline thinking if it was pecking it would stop, but that only increased the scratching due to irritation.

    Any ideas? I'm kinda worried about it. It's been getting worse for almost a week now and really don't have any ideas on what's wrong or how to fix it. Oh, it's not bleeding yet, but it's red and puffy and probably won't be long before it does bleed.


    Help . . . . . . .
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  2. math ace

    math ace Overrun With Chickens

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    Dec 17, 2009
    Jacksonville, FL
    mites and lice are easy enough to see. search for them under images on google if you need to see what they look like.
    Check the butt area.

    I would separate the chick and apply neosporin ointment (WITHOUT PAIN RELIEVER MEDICINE).
    Where the sore is located makes it hard for me to believe the chick is doing it to herself.
    If you can find a buddy chick that does not seem to pick on the injured one - - -you could pull that chick out so that she / is not alone.

    Are you using a heat lamp with them? If so, what color light are you using?
     
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    I would put Blue Kote on it, rather than goopy medicines.

    Just my opinion of course. [​IMG]
     
  4. hoping4better

    hoping4better Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 22, 2010
    Middle Tennessee
    math ace: I am still using a heat lamp and it is the red colored one. It's on 24-7. There's only one at the end of a 4x8 area. The non-brooder area of this room (my livingroom) stay's about 68-72 24-7. Is there something I should change about this?

    tala: As for Blu-Kote I got a little freaked out at the store when it and every other anti-septics and such like it stated that it was not for cats or food producing animals (then again Neosporin or vaseline don't have any indications about being used on animals at all). Is it safe to use on chickens destined for egg production of the kitchen table eventually?
     
  5. math ace

    math ace Overrun With Chickens

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    Dec 17, 2009
    Jacksonville, FL
    Quote:No, don't change anything. Sometimes if you use a white light they will do more picking on each other. RED is GOOD!

    Quote:Vaseline doesn't have anything to protect against infection, that is why I recommend neosporin. Tala has a point about the texture and perhaps using Blu-kote instead. These are commonly used products on chickens. The warnings are there because the medicine can be absorbed through the skin and transferred to the eggs. The manufactures then have to perform tests to determine how long it takes for the Rx to get totally out of the system. The manufactures don't do the testing and it is easier just to use the disclaimer! Your little one is a LONG WAY from laying an egg.

    Using the Rx is much better than chancing infection.
     
  6. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Quote:No, don't change anything. Sometimes if you use a white light they will do more picking on each other. RED is GOOD!

    Quote:Vaseline doesn't have anything to protect against infection, that is why I recommend neosporin. Tala has a point about the texture and perhaps using Blu-kote instead. These are commonly used products on chickens. The warnings are there because the medicine can be absorbed through the skin and transferred to the eggs. The manufactures then have to perform tests to determine how long it takes for the Rx to get totally out of the system. The manufactures don't do the testing and it is easier just to use the disclaimer! Your little one is a LONG WAY from laying an egg.

    Using the Rx is much better than chancing infection.

    Lots of people use it with caution on their meaties as well, and they'll be ready for processing a long time before your chick is laying eggs.

    I agree about the disclaimer just being an easy way to avoid lots of testing and FDA hoops. Many people who use Blue Kote end up getting it on themselves, and I'm sure it's "not for humans" either [​IMG] You might consider wearing gloves with the Blue medicines though, just because it STAINS your skin pretty bad LOL
     

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