Chick with a twisted beak

HennHouse

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 9, 2012
29
1
32
Cheshire, MA.
a friend just brought me a young chick today with a twisted beak. She was hoping that my little ones will be more accepting of her than the chickens she has...I guess they peck at her a lot :( Anyway, my question is, is there some special way she needs to be fed? All thoughts and suggestions will be greatly appreciated :) Oh one more thing...I think she is a black Cochin, can someone confirm?
 

chicmom

Dances with Chickens
10 Years
Feb 24, 2009
8,696
277
316
Strasburg Ohio
Hello, that's often called cross-beak. It's actually caused by a skull deformity, and I'm sorry to say it often worstens with age.

With some extra care, no telling how long the little chick can survive though. She/he will need a nice deep dish so that it can "scoop" out the chick starter. If the beak is super crooked already, the chick may not be able to get enough food, and sometimes they starve, which is so sad.

Alot of people will put a chick down for this condition, but some folks with extra compassion will really give it their all, handfeeding and watering. If you'd like to do that, chopped hard boiled egg yolk is a good food for the chick--very high in protein.

Good luck to you,
Sharon
 

HennHouse

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 9, 2012
29
1
32
Cheshire, MA.
Should I be trying to feed her wet food thru a dropper/syringe as well as offering the food in a deep dish? The poor little thing, my heart just breaks for her, I really want to do all I can for her:)
 

keliejc

In the Brooder
11 Years
May 3, 2008
22
0
22
Waterford Township, MI
I have a crossbeaked easter egger hen. "Sandy" is four years old now and still perky. Both feeders and waterers have deep troughs that allow her to scoop up her food. You can also try making her some gruel - cooked oatmeal, cottage cheese, maybe some carrots or spinach, plus milk or water then blended till smooth. I offered this in a small bowl, but have to isolate her while she eats or the other hens offer steep competition (I have 15 other hens). Sandy has grown up to be a healthy laying hen like all the others.
 

keliejc

In the Brooder
11 Years
May 3, 2008
22
0
22
Waterford Township, MI
My hen's crossbeak is pretty extreme, a little more crossed than that picture. I've had to trim excess growth from her beak once in a while. Just use pet toenail clippers.
 
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Suzie

Crowing
10 Years
Jul 9, 2009
3,112
714
331
Auvergne
I too have a chick with a crossed beak - the chick is now some six weeks old and is thriving well despite the beak problem - I do not treat it any differently to the others and it appears to eat normally and drinks well..

As long as the chick can get it's nutrients I am happy for it to have a great life with the others here, I have many chickens with various issues and all are loved and given the best possible care to give them a good quality of life, if any showed signs of suffering I would not hesitate to cull them - but while they show an interest they deserve my help.

Don't give up unless the chick gives up on you.

Best of luck

Suzie
 

HennHouse

In the Brooder
7 Years
May 9, 2012
29
1
32
Cheshire, MA.
My fear is that she is not getting enough food...she is very very thin, you can feel her breast bone, there is no meat along the sides of it....I did take her to our exotic vet and she is gonna trim her beak and observe her eating for 24 hours...she did feel she is very thin...keeping my fingers crossed for the little girl. I am very new to raising and keeping chickens and I want her to have to best care possible :)
 

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