Ducks with special Needs

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by quackers619, Oct 7, 2016.

  1. quackers619

    quackers619 Chillin' With My Peeps

    354
    47
    111
    Aug 21, 2015
    fayetteville,ga
    A few of us wanted to start a thread for duck owners who have ducks with special needs...... Please feel free to share your story ask questions, answer questions, or give ideas......
     
  2. Bills vs Beaks

    Bills vs Beaks Overrun With Chickens

    2,332
    3,139
    291
    Aug 31, 2016
    NJ USA
    Are you gonna put your story up?[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  3. quackers619

    quackers619 Chillin' With My Peeps

    354
    47
    111
    Aug 21, 2015
    fayetteville,ga
    I am the proud owner of 4 ducks and i have one duck that is blind in one eye and she has a deformed side crest that covers her good eye and her development has been about a month behind her sister. When we first got her we knew something was wrong but it took about 3 weeks until we discovered she was blind in one eye and then her crest started to grow and block her good eye........we were devastated and called around to have her put down but no vet around us that would put here down and i could not do it. my sister said lets try and shave her crest a little so we did and she could see much better so we put her out with her sister and my 2 older ducks and now she is a happy and healthy part of the flock.....The only thing i do for her is put her in her house at night and put her in and out of the pool



    This is Dandelion when she was a duckling and now
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. FoodFreedomNow

    FoodFreedomNow Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you, @quackers619, for starting this thread. I'm hoping there are more people with special needs ducks out there than just you, me, and @mirandaleecon. [​IMG] Looking forward to reading all the stories!

    My blind Muscovy drake's name is Elliott. He started out as "Ellie" (before I knew he was a drake) and was part of my first successful incubator hatch of Muscovy eggs. I had tried once before with shipped eggs and not a single one hatched, so it was incredibly exciting to have 7 alive in the incubator. Elliott was one of the last 3 eggs to hatch, and these late hatchers were assisted. Everyone looked fine at first, then I noticed that his eyes looked strange - they weren't properly formed. It was crushing, and I internally debated whether he could have a good quality of life free ranging on my property with other ducks and chickens, as well as predators like hawks, foxes, and owls.

    It became clear that while he couldn't see very well, he had a strong will to live and didn't let his disability slow him down - he swam and ran around just like the other ducklings. He sometimes fell or missed his mark when nibbling at greens outside because he had poor depth perception, but he just kept trying.

    Elliott grew quickly with the rest of his group, and they just treated him like any other duckling. When it came time to integrate the ducklings with the main duck group, I was concerned that he'd be picked on mercilessly, that he wouldn't get enough to eat, that a predator could grab him...what he showed me is that while he is jumpier than the others because he can't see, he isn't singled out by the other ducks for harassment. He even bites at others, too. He is very persistent and ensures he gets his share of food at communal feeding time (I've watched to make sure) - he's as large as the other drakes.
    Elliott relies on his hearing heavily to detect danger, and you can see him listening sometimes.

    The real test after integration was whether he would be able to go up the ramp to get inside the duck coop at night. He had trouble at first and had to be captured in a net and placed inside. He hated being caught and I hated doing it. Then, one night, he was nowhere to be found. I looked all around the property for him, thinking the worst, and then checked the coop. Guess which smart drake had already gone in for the night? Yep. And he does it pretty much every night now (sometimes the others have to be herded in first).

    Elliott has shown me that even a disability like blindness doesn't mean he can't have a good quality of life, additional risks and challenges notwithstanding. His life is harder than his siblings', but I can tell when he scoops up his fermented feed and wags his tail or exercises his wings in the sunshine that he is enjoying being alive. In his case, giving him the chance to try to adapt to living like the rest of the flock was the right decision and I'm glad it was the one I made. Elliott reminds me that animals just do the best they can every day, without feeling sorry for themselves. In fact, I don't think he even knows he's different.


    I hope you enjoyed Elliott's story. He's out in the sunshine right now foraging with the other ducks...attending to important duck business.

    Elliott as a duckling - pool time:
    [​IMG]

    Elliott today:
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Bills vs Beaks

    Bills vs Beaks Overrun With Chickens

    2,332
    3,139
    291
    Aug 31, 2016
    NJ USA
    :thumbsup
     
  6. quackers619

    quackers619 Chillin' With My Peeps

    354
    47
    111
    Aug 21, 2015
    fayetteville,ga
    He is very Handsome thanks for sharing your story
     
  7. FoodFreedomNow

    FoodFreedomNow Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks! And your Dandelion is adorable - so appropriately named. [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. quackers619

    quackers619 Chillin' With My Peeps

    354
    47
    111
    Aug 21, 2015
    fayetteville,ga
    Thank you
     
  9. quackers619

    quackers619 Chillin' With My Peeps

    354
    47
    111
    Aug 21, 2015
    fayetteville,ga
    Time for Dandelion to go to the barber for a shave and shampoo Lol. She may be blind but thanks to my other ducks she will know i am coming for her.........let the chase began
     
  10. FoodFreedomNow

    FoodFreedomNow Chillin' With My Peeps

    The duck rodeo! Yeehaw!! [​IMG]
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by