Duckling struggling to walk

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by ksp123, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. ksp123

    ksp123 New Egg

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    Mar 21, 2015
    Suffolk, England
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    Hi everyone we always use this site as its full of useful information but this is the first time we have posted. We had 6 ducklings hatch last weekend but the black duckling was the last to hatch on day 30. He is now 4 days old. We noticed on day 1 that he has a curve on his spine which makes him lean to the left. On day 1 and 2 his left foot was closed as you see on the photo and he kept getting stuck on his back but yesterday he was doing so well and able to walk and did not fall on to his back. Today he seems to be really struggling again and has not been walking. He has been shuffling and falling onto his back again. We have moved him and one other into a seperate brooder as the others knock him over. He has been eating and drinking.
    I just wondered if anyone had any advice. Will this get better or worse? He doesnt appear to be in pain but I dont want to leave him in pain but I really dont want to have to get him put to rest if he can have a good life.
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Before giving up, I would get him on a high-nutrient diet.

    That would include B vitamins (I would get a B-Complex vitamin with niacin (look for nicotinamide or nicotinic acid - not inositol hexanicotinate, because the i.h. is no-flush, and that is not what is good for ducklings). Use the B3, which is niacin, as your baseline. Get 150 mg of niacin per gallon of water in the drinking water. This is based on the recommendation in Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks. I would use a B Complex because it would contain thiamine, which is another B vitamin often related to leg issues with ducklings.

    I would put a tiny sprinkle of chick grit in the starter crumbles, and then after a week start giving a few finely chopped teaspoons of kale.

    Some folks also have given Vitamin E, but since I am not sure what the safe dosage would be, I suggest you look into that and see what you can find from a reliable source.

    Here are a couple of stories of ducklings that turned out well in spite of serious problems.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/857143/treating-wry-neck-in-crested-duckling-edited-title

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/761308/peking-duckling-with-crooked-neck-help
     
  3. ksp123

    ksp123 New Egg

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    Mar 21, 2015
    Suffolk, England
    Thank you for your reply and advice. Unfortunately today he is a bit worse and not even shuffling and when we put him in the water he just tips over to the left. We have been massaging his legs often and cant feel no obvious signs of why he is so tilted. It seems he has no strength on his left side. We have been moving him to the food and water and he eats and drinks but cannot get there himself. We have been feeding him a vitamin meal including niacin.
    Thanks again
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    That is not likely enough niacin if it is a small part of a multivitamin.
     
  5. ksp123

    ksp123 New Egg

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    Mar 21, 2015
    Suffolk, England
    We have ordered some offline as it doesn't seem to be as easy to get hold of in the uk. We have some vetark critical care from a previous duck. Would that also be any good?thanks
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    When you can't watch your duckling have a towel made into a donut shape and place the duckling head up into it it will keep him from flipping over onto his back. You'll have to make sure he gets to eat and drink but this is one way of giving him stability until he is strong enough to manage on his own. Not sure what the Vetark critical care is I'll look it up.
    Looks like the Vetark gives needed protein which may help with energy but I'd get the B complex asap and get him on that also.
    There is always the possibility he still won't make it but at least you will have given him his best chance. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2015

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