Chicken legs? 6 week red roo.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by tazcat70, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. tazcat70

    tazcat70 I must be crazy!

    I don't remember him having trouble when I first got him. Over time this has developed. Does anyone know what is wrong with his legs? Is is curable? Should I worry about him? He gets around fine and it does not seem to bother him.



    BTW...that is spaghetti at his feet not worms. [​IMG]

  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    I think he has a slipped tendon. I don't know if you can do anything. I had a Barred Rock chick about three or four weeks old suddenly develop this and we put him down because he seemed to be in pain. Here is a link to something about the condition; see if it fits.
  3. tazcat70

    tazcat70 I must be crazy!

    I hope not! My kids would be really upset (me too!) He is kind of our favorite.

    Any other ideas? I was thinking genetic, since he has been on recommended chick starter since I got him.

    How will I know if he is in pain? Like I said he acts like the others, well the others don't poof up their neck feathers back at him. [​IMG]

  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Sadily, if that was my bird, I would give it a week and if there was no improvement, cull him... I think it might just get harder on him as his body grows without the proper support in the legs giving the right feedback to where muscle needs to develop. His major problem if he can walk and eat is that he will get pecked on as he gets older because he will not be able to defend himself.
  5. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    if it is your pet then there is a small procedure they can do if it is a slipped tendon (they do a lot on emus and such) ... you will need a vet that knows about it...a member in california had it done . (I was unable to view your pic due to it being too large) Here is ino on measures to take with birds with leg problems:
    "...Leg Weakness
    Disorders involving leg weakness are a persistent problem in commercial poultry operations around the world. Leg problems in poultry are associated with many causes including nutrition, genetics, virus infection, environment. The problem is widespread with 2 to 6% of all commercial chickens displaying some sort of problem. Descriptions of the more common problems are given:
    Viral arthritis
    Also called tenosynovitis. Reovirus infection is considered the main cause of the problem with secondary Staphylococcus aureus infection. The disease is not nutritional in origin but may occur along with malabsorption syndrome. The condition results in severe lameness that reduces ability of the bird to move causing malnutrition and stunting. Swelling of the shanks and hock can be observed as early as 10 days but usually develop at 4 to 6 weeks. The swollen area may be filled with clear or bloody fluid or may be hardened and fibrous.

    Femoral head necrosis
    This condition is also called "brittle bone disease". It appears to be related to reovirus and adenovirus as these are often isolated from affected flocks. Fusarium contamination of ingredients is often observed. Femoral head necrosis is characterized by a severe weakening or disintegration of the head of the femur such that upon necropsy the bone end is easily broken off between the fingers.

    This is caused by infection with Mycoplasma synoviae. The major signs are lameness and swelling of the hock joints with cream colored fluid. Eradication has been successful through blood testing of the breeders. Egg transmission can be reduced by dipping of eggs with antibiotic.

    This condition is caused by bacterial infection. S. aureus is the major cause with secondary involvement of E. coli and Pasteurella multocida. Invasion of bacteria after toe trimming or by cuts and scratches produce toxins that prevent cartilage formation. Birds often have a hopping gait and the affected area is swollen and warm to the touch. Biosecurity, good hygiene and treatment with antibiotics will reduce problems if caught in the early stages.

    Tibial dyschondroplasia
    This abnormality occurs primarily at the growth ends of the tibia where a large amount or "plug" of unvascularized cartilage accumulates. TD does not appear to be related to virus infection. Faster growing flocks on a high plane of nutrition are often affected. Acid-base imbalance, high levels of salt, low calcium and excess nitrogen increase severity of TD (Waldroup, 1986). Fusarium mycotoxins such as fusarochromanone and contamination of corn with Fusarium moniliforme increases the incidence of TD (Cook, 1987). Aflatoxin reduces vitamin D absorption and liver damage prevents conversion to the active 25-OH form of vitamin D3. Experimentally, 1, 25- OH vitamin D3 has ben found to prevent TD. Vitamin C has also been found useful. Although TD occurs in other bones, it is most common at the proximal end of the tibia because of high stress at this point. A higher incidence of breast blisters is usually observed in birds with this condition probably because they are spending more time off their feet.

    A direct result of vitamin D deficiency and low or imbalanced calcium or phosphorus nutrition. Bones are decalcified and weakened causing bowing of the legs and other problems. The growth plate is increased in width and birds appear sluggish and are reluctant to walk. The bones and beaks are soft and rubbery. Mycotoxins are often involved.

    Also called chondrodystrophy or "slipped tendon". Symptoms include swelling of the hock joint, shortening of the leg bone and gastrocnemius tendon slippage off the condyle. This problem is mostly genetic but may be induced experimentally in diets deficient in one or more of the following nutrients: choline, manganese, zinc, copper, niacin, biotin, pyridoxine, vitamin E, vitamin B12, calcium and phosphorus.

    Twisted leg
    This very common ailment in broilers is often confused with other problems. One or both legs may be involved. The legs may be bent inward or outward. Litter quality and heat stress seem to play a role. Manganese deficiency worsens the condition whereas high doses of pyridoxine improve the condition (Waldroup, 1986). Dietary tannin from rapeseed meal and high tannin sorghum as well as the high sulfur content in rapeseed and Canola meal interfere with calcium metabolism and increase incidence of this condition (Summers, 1993).

    Strategies for reducing incidence of leg problems:
    Biosecurity and disease control to eradicate mycoplasma and reduce the indicence of reovirus.

    Monitor and reduce contamination of grains, groundnut meal and corn gluten meal with aflatoxin and Fusarium mold.

    Calcium and phosphorus sources should be highly bioavailable. Avoid dolomitic limestone containing more than 3% magnesium as this impairs calcium utilization. Phosphate sources should contain less than 0.25% fluoride and defluorinated rock phosphate should contain between 4 to 6% sodium to ensure solubility of phosphorus. Maintain a 2:1 ratio of calcium to available phosphorus for broilers and pullets and 12:1 ratio for layers.

    Ensure adequate available levels of all vitamins and trace minerals. Additional vitamin E (up to 150 ppm), biotin (up to 60 ppm) and supplementation with vitamin C (125 ppm) may be useful.

    Avoid excess sodium (above 0.30%) and chloride (above 0.40%) in feed.

    Avoid water with sodium above 500 ppm, chloride above 500 ppm, nitrogen (as NO3) above 50 ppm and sulfur (as sulfate) above 1000 ppm (Leeson and Summers, 1991).

    Monitor sulfur level in feed. This can be a problem when using high levels of rapeseed and/or Canola meals. Total feed sulfur should be less than 0.5%.

    Avoid high levels of tannins. Monitor the use of ingredients such as high tannin sorghum, sunflower meal, Canola and rapeseed meals.

    Reduce nutrient density in feed to slow growth when persistent problems occur. Avoid amino acid imbalances and excess protein. ..."
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2007
  6. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    Just to add that nutritional deficiencies are often involved... Manganese, choline, biotin,
    Though they cannot reverse the condition (A vet will have to correct the slipped tendon) IF they are (and it is often so) then you can add a good general supplement to their feed such as AviaCharge 2000 which is a complete supplement providing all the micronutrients and meinerals in the correct ratio to each other will help prevent this problem cropping up again(for the affected bird an additional bird supplement with those specific elements to correct)

    6.7 Manganese deficiency, Perosis
    Required by poultry for growth reproduction, and prevention or prosis. Also required for development of normal bones.
    a. Signs and Symptoms:
    Age: 3-5 weeks.
    Action: Chronic.
    The affected number in the flock is low, but there is always a few in every flocks.
    Excellent appetite.
    The disorder is aggravated by excessive quantities of calcium and phosphorusin the ration.
    In laying and breeding birds, manganese deficiency results in lowered egg production, hatchability and reduced egg shell strength.
    b. Lesions:
    Puff off the hock may see hemorrhage. Lots of serum around the hock joint. Tendon may be slip.
    (small excerpt)
    "...Prevention of perosis requires a diet adequate in all necessary nutrients, especially manganese, choline, niacin, biotin, and folic acid. Deformities cannot be corrected by feeding more manganese. Effects of manganese deficiency on egg production are fully corrected by a diet that contains manganese at 30-40 mg/kg, provided that the diet does not contain excess calcium and phosphorus. Calcium intake may be excessive if calcium supplements are provided free-choice. When meat meal is used as the principal source of protein, the feed may contain excess phosphorus...."
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2007
  7. tazcat70

    tazcat70 I must be crazy!

    Thank you all.

    I watched him closely this morning and afterwards I spoke to my son about it (Red is his).

    Unfortunately, he is a pet, but at the same time not one. If you know what I mean, so surgery is out.

    Now for the tough part. How do you do the "culling" part? I want the quickest and most humane way that I can do it.

    Thank you again.

  8. jeaucamom

    jeaucamom Songster

    Oct 1, 2007
    Ophir, CA
    I had to cull one at that age from a cross beak who was starving, but I couldn't do it myself. I took her to the vet and for $10 he euthanized her. I'm really sorry about your chicken, such a hard fact of life with farm animals, and so hard to deal with emotionally. Hugs, Suz :aww
  9. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I would just take a very sharp knife, and cut off it's head. It's still very young so it should be easy to do right.

    This may sound kind of weird, but since you are learning, how bout turn it positive? Like, to a story of this is where food comes from?

    Else you could take him to a vet, but some places will be more than just 10 bucks... I've heard of a lot more but it depends on your area.

    Under meat birds there are several threads on how to butcher/cull them.
  10. tazcat70

    tazcat70 I must be crazy!

    Thank you all!


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