Chick with Possible Marek's - Put Down?!?!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by juliecox, Oct 29, 2009.

  1. juliecox

    juliecox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello! I have a chick that's about 6 weeks old that I suspect has Marek's. I am here to ask if she has a chance of recovery or if I should put her down.

    She is a splash cochin/silkie - yeah, I totally don't want to lose her, she's beautiful! She is outside with 2 other chicks of the same age, with a heat lamp in their little mini-coop. They are kept separate from the other chickens. They have clean water and food all the time. Their floor is hardware cloth, but they do have some perches to sit on and a big log to climb onto to get closer to the lamp.

    The past few days the splash hen has been sitting off by herself, huddled up, not moving. I have no observed her eating or drinking, though I've seen the other 2 eating and drinking. I investigated today and found that she seems to be lame. Her legs move when I move them around, but she seems to have little control over them. It sounds like Marek's to me.

    So. Give her a chance or put her out of her misery? I don't know how inevitably fatal Marek's is, or if it's definitely Marek's. WHAT DO I DO?!?!?!

    Thanks!
    -Julie
     
  2. cicene mete

    cicene mete Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The classic Marek's disease pose is sitting with one leg back and one leg forward, almost like doing a split. The forward leg pose usually looks unusual. Paralysis may also affect one of the wings, or both. If the eye is affected, it will turn gray.

    I have nursed a chicken through the disease before, and she survived, but she was a lot older than yours. We tried to nurse the younger one through. It was horrible and we ultimately had to put her down anyway. DW and I decided at that point that we would put down any other very young chickens that came down with the disease. They lose a lot of weight, and it is hard for a young bird to cope with that.

    However, it's completely up to you. They can survive the paralysis period, although most do not.
     
  3. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

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    I would recommend separating her immediately from the others. Put here in a warm, clean environment and offer her plain yogurt, scrambled eggs, or even thawed frozen blueberries. If you can, start her of 3-4 drops of Poly-Vi-Sol baby vitamins without iron.

    Then observe closely and keep an eye on the poop in particular. Also, check the coop for ANY signs of moldy food in cracks and crevices. It can cause neurological damage that presents with the paralysis like Marek's.

    Where did the chicks come from and were they vaccinated?

    Try looking at this, answer what you can and also take advantage of the links at the bottom.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=3569

    Good luck, don't want you to lose your chick!
     
  4. juliecox

    juliecox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I hatched her under a hen and then brought the chicks inside. I ordered the eggs from Dipsy Doodle Doo. (The hen trampled a couple of chicks, or I'd have left them with her. Not a good mama apparently.) Neither she nor the others were vaccinated. I tried but I never could find a source for vaccinations for just a handful of chicks.

    No sign of trauma, haven't seen the other two messing with her.

    Would she be more stressed by being moved and left alone, or more stressed by being with the other chicks, do you think?

    Cooked or raw scrambled eggs?

    Also, if she's in the 75-degree house, does she need an additional heat source at her age?
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2009
  5. juliecox

    juliecox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She's still the same ... how long does it generally take for them to either succumb or recover?
     
  6. cicene mete

    cicene mete Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It took our hen about 7-10 days before she showed significant improvement.
     
  7. juliecox

    juliecox Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think I'm going to bring her inside today. Should I provide her with a heat lamp? Cooked or raw scrambled eggs?
     
  8. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    At 6 weeks old she should be okay without a heat lamp if your house is a fairly decent temperature. She might need a little warmth. You need to scramble or boil the eggs.
     
  9. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    She may have a slipped tendon.
     
  10. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    There is info. on Marek here. Sorry I had to space it all out..
    ultimatefowl . com / wiki / index . php ? title = Marek % 27s _ Disease

    Chris
     

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