Duck limping, not bumblefoot, no swelling, what could it be?

austroberta

Songster
Oct 1, 2017
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Oakland CA
My 9 month old Welsh Harlequin has developed a limp. We noticed it 2 days ago, in the afternoon, and have seen it get progressively worse. I've examined the foot that's bothering her (her right foot) and I don't see any signs of either bumblefoot or developing bumblefoot, nor do I see any pronounced swelling. We examined her foot with a magnifying glass, and I don't see any thorns. Her limp hasn't really slowed her down -- she is still very active, and doing all her normal duck activities of foraging, swimming, preening, eating, etc. I even see that she runs. The limp seems to ramp up as the day goes by....somewhat noticeable in the morning and really pronounced at the day's end.

I've been soaking her foot in Epsom salt twice a day and just starting giving her meloxicam. What else should I be doing? Also, what should I be looking for and at what point should I take her to the vet (which I hate doing)?

Thanks!
 

Duckfarmer1

Crowing
Jul 23, 2019
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Can you take pictures? That would be very helpful for some of us to see what might be the issue. It also might not actually be the foot pad itself. Have you checked the joints for heat? That is typically a dead giveaway for an injury.or pain.
 

Miss Lydia

Love is in the Air
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Feel all along her leg from top of leg down. I have an Indian Runner female that developed a limp a few months back took close to a month before it went away. No visible sign of anything wrong. I kept her in a dog X pen so she could still be with her family. Put her in the coop with them at night. A few days ago she is doing it again. Still nothing showing up but she must have an injury. So this time I am putting Nutritional yeast over their feed everyday and giving her liquid B complex to see if it helps. Today when they came out she was much better, but not sure as the day progresses. Other than taking your girl to the vet I can only give what I am doing. Hope she gets better quick.
 
Sep 2, 2018
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@austroberta How is your duck doing today?
Do you have any drakes or dominant ducks in your flock?
I had two cases of suddenly limping ducks last autumn and there was no obvious sign of an injury of bumblefoot visible. My prime suspects were the three young drakes from August who had just figured out the purpose of their »corkscrew« appendix. All three rather heavy birds and the two ducks more on the light side… Both healed up very well, one of them still has a slight limp when she walks slowly. Maybe just slipped tendons.
 

austroberta

Songster
Oct 1, 2017
363
548
173
Oakland CA
@austroberta How is your duck doing today?
Do you have any drakes or dominant ducks in your flock?
I had two cases of suddenly limping ducks last autumn and there was no obvious sign of an injury of bumblefoot visible. My prime suspects were the three young drakes from August who had just figured out the purpose of their »corkscrew« appendix. All three rather heavy birds and the two ducks more on the light side… Both healed up very well, one of them still has a slight limp when she walks slowly. Maybe just slipped tendons.
I got rid of my drake as soon as I could, so no drakes. I do have an older runner duck, Anise, who is quite the bully, pecking at both my Welsh Harlequins frequently. Both of them tend to bulldoze over my runner duck to get the best foraging and that pisses Anise off. Selah, the WH with the limp, tends to take it in stride, although occasionally she'll just walk a few steps away and let Anise get at the good foraging. I've never seen Anise attack/charge Selah when they aren't in the immediate area, which is what my drake used to do (major reason, why I had to get rid of him.) In other words, she's not eyeballing her from the other side of the yard, and running from there to attack Selah.

What did you do for your duck? How do you fix a slipped tendon?

The limping hasn't slowed Selah down at all. She still is very active.
 

austroberta

Songster
Oct 1, 2017
363
548
173
Oakland CA
Feel all along her leg from top of leg down. I have an Indian Runner female that developed a limp a few months back took close to a month before it went away. No visible sign of anything wrong. I kept her in a dog X pen so she could still be with her family. Put her in the coop with them at night. A few days ago she is doing it again. Still nothing showing up but she must have an injury. So this time I am putting Nutritional yeast over their feed everyday and giving her liquid B complex to see if it helps. Today when they came out she was much better, but not sure as the day progresses. Other than taking your girl to the vet I can only give what I am doing. Hope she gets better quick.
I do have some b-complex that I can give her. I'm thinking it's an injury because if it were a Niacin deficiency, wouldn't both her legs be affected? She also is a super forager and gets tons of slugs, cutworms, bugs, etc, which makes me think she's good on the Niacin, as those things have Niacin.
 

austroberta

Songster
Oct 1, 2017
363
548
173
Oakland CA
Giving the B complex is for support since it's so good for healthy legs muscles. Hopefully that along with rest will take care of it. Mine is out with everyone but in a smaller fenced off area so she is running amuck
Thanks! I will put a B complex pill down her crop. I did feel up and down her leg and didn't feel any heat. I have closed off my backyard (my ducks roam both the back and front yard). I'd put her in the run, with her sister, but I think she might get very bored in there, as foraging is not all that great. In general, she is super energetic. Even now, the limp has not slowed her down in the least.

Do you think I should forego the Meloxicam since I don't feel any heat, which would not indicate inflammation?
 
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