Chicken can't stand or walk

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by cuckooformarans, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. cuckooformarans

    cuckooformarans In the Brooder

    Jul 14, 2013
    Breed: Cornish Cross
    Age: 12-13 weeks
    Sex: Female

    Back story: We ordered 25 cornish cross chicks mid summer. We had two die as young chicks, they appeared wet, small, and lethargic. These chicks passed within a few days or showing signs of illness. After these two died we had no problems till after we introduced the chick to the rest of our flock of laying chickens. Weeks after the introduction, one of our young adult roosters started acting funny. He was relatively unresponsive to his environment. He stood upright with his head tucked down and his wing hunched up, and eyes closed. When held, he was literally feathers and bone, and felt lifeless. This only went on for a few days, then he was dead. A few more weeks went by and another one of our cornish cross was showing all the same symptoms. We knew how it was going to end so we put him down. Weeks later again another cornish cross is sick. All other birds show no sign at all of being ill.
    This one is showing different symptoms:
    Laying down
    Wings resting outward
    Eating fine
    Drinking fine
    Every time it tries to walk it puts its face on the ground for balance
    Both legs are under the bird
    Stool looks normal
    Skin looks normal besides slightly pale
    Eyes look normal, were closed before treatment
    No discharge anywhere
    Feathers do appear ruffled and dirty
    Was unresponsive to environment before treatment

    Our current course of action:
    The bird has been separated from the rest. We have it in a small coop with outside pen area. There is a heat lamp, and plenty of food and water easily accessible. We originally thought maybe coccidiosis was the diagnosis, and have been treating the bird with Corid for the last week. In that time we have seen a little improvement in the bird. Since treatment it does seem to be more alert, and the color in its face has come back a bit. The bird still cannot walk or stand. Its almost like it has lost its muscle mass in its legs.
    Any input is appreciated.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013

  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    My first guess would have been Coccidiosis, but this is unlikely because you are treating with Corid and have seen little improvement. What dosage of Corid are you using? All of the symptoms seem to fit, but the treatment should be working.

    Its possible that they have a vitamin deficiency, as it can cause the inability to walk. However, it usually comes on slowly, and your birds seem to rapidly experience problems. Still, you could try giving them some vitamins, like Poly Vi Sol infant vitamins, and see if that helps.

    What are you feeding them?

    There is another possiblity. Cornish Cross aren't meant to live very long. You should really only keep them around for eight weeks or less, as they are meat chickens, bred to grow quickly. Past that age, they often begin to develop leg problems. Cornish Cross are also susceptible to heart problems and ascites. So, it may be that the sick birds simply are meant to live any longer. Cornish Cross weren't really developed to be long lived chickens.
  3. ABCChicks

    ABCChicks Hatching

    Oct 22, 2013
    I am having the same symptoms with my 6 week old Rhode Island Red, sure wish someone could help us out with a treatment.
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    ABC it would be good if you could start your own new thread on the emergency forum, giving age and as many symptoms and background details as possible--not trying to be bossy, but you will end up getting more help. First thing in the morning is best. Just go to next to post a reply and click on "start a new thread."
  5. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Songster

    May 25, 2008
    cuckoo--What did the previous birds' poops look like & how does the current ill one's look? I know you said he's eating fine. Does he have good weight on him?

    ABCChicks--If the symptoms are similar enough, maybe indeed the cause is the same, but perhaps there's something in your Red's symptoms distinctive enough to help with diagnosing a different cause. If you do start a thread about it's symptoms, please post a link here so we can cross-reference while trying to diagnose.
    You can also look at the Poultry Podiatry page on the site linked in my sig for descriptions of many kinds of leg problems.
  6. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Songster

    May 25, 2008
  7. ten chicks

    ten chicks Songster

    May 9, 2013
    Have you looked up any information on Marek's Disease? I would suggest you have a look at symptoms.

  8. cuckooformarans

    cuckooformarans In the Brooder

    Jul 14, 2013
    Yes, I understand cornish cross arent meant to be kept longer than 8-9 weeks. The rest of the batch was just butchered. We raised a batch earlier this summer and they grew much larger and faster than this second batch. Still, we kept our last batch for 12 weeks and never lost a chicken or had any signs of illness. Im disappointed in how much smaller overall this batch ended up.

    I am feeding grower mash 16% protien

    Poop has been normal in appearance in the chickens.

    I have researched Marek's and agree some symptoms sound the same, but some my birds are not showing any sign of. And I wonder if it was Marek's I would think it would be dead now, it has been ill for about 2 weeks now.
  9. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Songster

    May 25, 2008
  10. Ameer894

    Ameer894 Chirping

    Oct 26, 2013
    Please put pictures .... attach them to your topics
    It's very useful

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