chicks can't walk and are slowly dying off

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Farmer_Neal, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. Farmer_Neal

    Farmer_Neal Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello,
    I have 3 chicks that are not doing well. Two of them are white leghorns and one may be a RIR mix. They are about 2 weeks old. I have been feeding them a ground-up mixture of soybeans, corn and wheat. Their poop looks fine, and they have been eating and drinking ok.

    Their symptoms are:
    -They are having trouble walking and just stumble around. One can¬ít walk at all, but crawls around on his knees. [​IMG]
    -Their legs seem to be a bit crooked at the knee joint, and toes are very crooked.
    -Are rocking back and forth when they are sitting just standing.
    -4 have died already. They just kinda lay there panting for a while, then fade off.

    Could they have pneumonia? Do you think they can be saved, or should I put them out of their pain?

    I feel so bad for them and hope there is something I can do to help them. Any and all help would be nice. Let me know if you have any questions or need more info. Thanks so much! Laura and Emmie
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Several points.
    Are your soybeans cooked or raw? Raw soybeans are toxic to chicks.
    Your mixture of feed is an attempt at providing the right nutrients and may have enough protein but is still missing all the vitamins and minerals they need.
    You should be feeding a complete grower ration unless you want to buy all the ingredients you need to make a complete feed.

    What type of footing/bedding do they have? Is it slick like newspaper? Or do they have better footing.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
  3. Stephanie739

    Stephanie739 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm new to chickens so I'm just taking some guesses....
    1) I think they need grit to help digest the food.
    2) What type of heat are you providing?
    3) What type of bedding? Cedar shavings are toxic. No shavings, smooth surface, causes leg development problems.
     
  4. Chicken_Pauper

    Chicken_Pauper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How old are they? Were they vaccinated for Marek's?

    Is that blend for feeding supposed to be better than chick starter? I don't know about the food... Maybe you could try an antibiotic (maybe the water soluable Tetracycline/Duramycin 10) and Chick Starter feed?

    Could they have "splayed legs"?

    Use the Search here on BYC to search some of the symptoms (and splayed legs) -- and see what others with more experience and knowledge have to say.

    I am sorry for your loss. It's so sad to lose chicks or any.

    Good luck.
     
  5. Farmer_Neal

    Farmer_Neal Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Their bedding is wood chips and hay. Not slick, and no cedar shavings. The soybeans are cooked. Aren't there vitamins and minerals in the corn?

    Quote:Yes, they do have grit. They have one of those hanging red heat lamps.

    Quote:They are a bit over 2 weeks old. No, they havn't been vaccinated for Marek's. What is Marek's? I'll do some reserch on "splayed legs".

    Thanks for all the ideas sofar.
     
  6. FiveHens

    FiveHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry you're having trouble. If I were you I'd switch on to commercial chick starter/grower mix right away, so that you can factor out the possible problem of malnutrition, which can be very bad for chicks that grow so fast. Sorry I can't help you more!
     
  7. Farmer_Neal

    Farmer_Neal Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Thanks, I'll see if I can pick them up some chick feed.
     
  8. Stephanie739

    Stephanie739 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am so sorry you are having to deal with this. I wonder if there is some sort of sickness. Have you done a google search for chicken illness? Scroll about halfway down to this...Avian Encephalomyelitis http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ps044
     
  9. Duramaxgirl

    Duramaxgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would put them on chick starter and wait to give them the home made mixture till they are way older. I would also give them vitamins/electrolytes in their water. They can't get mareks at 2 weeks old. I think your symptoms sound like a diet/vitamin deficiency. I'm sorry for your loss and I hope they get better soon.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
  10. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Nov 23, 2010
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    Quote:They are a bit over 2 weeks old. No, they havn't been vaccinated for Marek's. What is Marek's? I'll do some reserch on "splayed legs".

    Thanks for all the ideas sofar.

    Until you get a chance to get a grower feed you can crumble hard boiled egg yolk for them. That has about all the nutrients they need.I considered Marek's too. I would look into that.
    I doubt they all have splayed leg if they are on good bedding.


    Corn doesn't have a great deal of vitamins, if it did, feed manufacturers wouldn't need to add vitamins and minerals to their recipes to get the nutrients up to what growing chicks need.

    http://www.ag.auburn.edu/~chibale/an12poultryfeeding.pdf

    http://www.thepoultrysite.com/articles/94/feeding-chickens-for-best-health-and-performance

    chick starter recipes for mixing your own.
    http://www.greenerpasturesfarm.com/ChickStarterRecipe.html
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011

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