Chick with cross beak *pics*


11 Years
Feb 10, 2008
Western Oregon
This is one of my salmon favorelle chicks, standard size from Ideal. She is 4 days old. How much worse will her beak get if it looks like this at this age? So far she is doing just fine, no problems eating or drinking and is growing and active. Her stool is normal. It does not seem to have gotten any worse over the past 2 days since I first noticed it.



Thanks for any advice from those who have raised chicks with this condition.
I have a cross beak chick that is about 6 weeks old. It started just like yours and within a week it was double what yours is and now much more. I have been worried and have been watching her every day. Even with the bad cross she is eating and drinking fine. This is the first cross beak I have had so I'm not sure what to expect, but I did read a post where someone kept one well into adulthood. I'm going to let her continue to grow as long as she can eat and drink.
I hear that with some cases, you can trim the beak little by little and eventually get it sort of straight. You'll never get it totally straight or normal because this is a birth defect that starts in the skull.
Good luck with that little one! Make sure her water and food is always full and she will learn to "scoop" with the bottom of her beak.
Sometimes they do well with it. HenHaven's EE hen, Hootie, is over two years old, crossbeaked and she keeps it trimmed. Hootie is at the top of the pecking order in the flock, too. If it's a pullet, I'd not breed it, but would keep it in my laying flock and keep the beak trimmed and make sure she could eat with deeper dishes, etc. If it was a cockerel, unfortunately, I'd cull it. And I have once. Hard decision for me, but a cockerel is for breeding or pet, can't lay eggs, so if you dont breed it, not much else to do.
of Penetran for Beak Malocclusion Greg J. Harrison, DVM Dipl. ABVP Avian"
Topical application of Penetran is effective for avian skin rashes, local irritations and ulcerations. It can be mixed with aloe vera liquid for generalized dermatologic conditions. Because it has penetrating properties, I have used it to treat some deeper muscular problems. In two cases of a serious beak malocclusion with underbite, the only therapy was application of Penetran to the facial muscles including the periopthalmic areas. In a ten-day-old cockatoo, the muscles relaxed and the beak returned to normal positioning overnight; a full week of Penetran application and prolonged periods of manual positioning of the beak were also successful in a four-week-old cockatoo.Penetran is a commercially available ammonium solution from TransDermal Technologies, Inc.

more info here:
I had a Barred Holland that started just like that. I even noticed it at 4 days. I had to euthenize (sp) mine at around 2 weeks. Her's got much worse and she couldn't figure out how to eat once it got bad. I kept a deep bowl in there for her and even tried hand feeding.

I think you just have to wait and see how your chick does. Some are great about learning how to adjust.

Good luck
I'm so glad to have seen your post because this happened to our one of our sweet chickens last year and she eventually died from starvation. Unfortunately, I didn't start researching it until it was too late, but found out that it is very easy to fix this problem. The problem is actually in your chicken's jaw and if you start giving her Calc/Phos and Bioplasma (cell salts available at your local natural foods store) the jaw will grow normally and she will have a normal beak. It was incredibly sad to see our sweet chick slowly die. We thought she was growing normally, but soon discovered that her crop was empty and the reason she was following us around all the time was because she eventually couldn't get any food.

I found out about the cell salts from a wildlife rescuer (she saves hawks, deer, etc.). She was very disappointed to hear I had waited until our chicken was six months old to call her. If I, like you, had started giving her cell salts early on, she would have been fine.

You can dissolve the cell salts in the chicken water. It is good for the other chicks too.
Greats my hen also has a cross beak and I keep it trim so that she can pick. She also eats out of a deep bowl and she gets extra time to eat when I feed them. I am not sure if you would want to clip it right now I waited until mine was bothering her so she could not eat. Good luck with her I know it is either they do fine or they do not do as well.

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