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Dumb silkie?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by kvmommy, Jan 16, 2012.

  1. kvmommy

    kvmommy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2011
    Ok, I have had the worst luck with silkies. First none of a dozen silkie eggs hatched the first 3 times then finally 4 from a dozen hatched. (I hatched with other breeds and they all hatched fine). Then I culled 1 because its legs were weird from the moment it hatched and it just wasn't fixable. Then one's leg started to twist...gave it vitamins and brace and it never got better but never got worse. But its bum leg made it hobble. It was the most beautiful silkie I've ever seen. Then my daughter was moving her to the brooder box and she jumped out of her hands only inches from the ground but broker her leg. We had to put her down. That left me with Elton John my white silkie i'm sure was a roo and Lady Gaga...named thus because she is kind of Gaga...literally she's dumb. She did ok with 3 silkies, Elton always took care of her. She never seems to see the food scraps or scratch and just runs around confused. Or doesn't notice when everyone else is eating. Or she wanders off and freaks out and can't find her way back to the flock. Elton did everything for her. Well yesterday he became dinner for a predator. Now Gaga is worse off then ever. She couldn't find her way back to the coop last night. The other 4 chicks are standard sized mutts and could care less about Gaga.

    Without Elton there, plus being the only silkie, i'm worried about her. She's already much thinner than the others. Is it normal to be this dumb? What should I do..she kind of just mopes around clueless without her man to protect and take care of her.
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Sometimes when it is thought that a chicken is just hopelessly dumb, it's actually blind. Your little Gaga sure sounds like she may have a vision problem or be totally blind.

    It's common for a blind chicken to take cues from those around her, so she depended on Elton to provide guidance. Try an experiment. Take Gaga aside and hold a treat in front of her face. If she does nothing, she is probably blind and can't see the food.

    Next try placing the food on the ground and make tapping sounds on it. If she then finds the food and eats it, she's relying on sound to find her food - the sound of others eating or scratching for food.

    You will need to teach Gaga where her food is and you need to always keep it in the same exact spot so she can always find it. Same with water.

    Try trimming the fluff around her eyes first. She may just be unable to see well - a common condition with silkies and polish.
     
  3. kvmommy

    kvmommy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2011
    Boy, am I gonna feel mean if my silkie is visually disabled and dumb. lol Her fluff isn't that big yet so I don't think its that....and she seems to see the food I hold out to her, but when she gets it and it drops to the ground she gets all confused again and all the other chicks get it. I feel so bad for her. Twice I had to go get her and bring her back to my flock. Should I try to hatch some more silkies? Do you think she'd have the same relationship with them? Because althought all the chicks were raised together, the silkies did tend to separate from the others sometimes as their own little clique. Oh, and she and elton (and her sister when she was alive) always cuddled together in the coop and the others cuddled together on their own. I peeked in today and she was huddled by herself. :( I also wonder if she is deaf...when I open the doors at night everyone perks right up, but she'll sleep through it. I have to admit, I'm kind of fond of her addled brainedness.
     
  4. kvmommy

    kvmommy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2011
    well I found her a new home where she'll be the only lady for a handsome silkie roo....I hope she is happy!!
     

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