Dying cornish cross chick

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by arrowti, May 18, 2016.

  1. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have a cornish cross hen who will be almost 3 weeks old. I found her in the brooder with 70 other cornish, unable to stand, one wing out to the side, eyes closed. I picked her up and she chirped and struggled a bit but quickly gave up. The others were stampeding over her so I brought her inside with some water mixed with nutridrench. She won't drink on her own - or can't - so I've dipped her beak in the water a few times for her to drink. She has not eaten anything so far. I do not see any poop at all or discharge. No wheezing, runny nose, or apparent signs of injuries to her legs or wings - she has been pecked a few times, however. Maybe trampled by the larger roosters who are not going crazy in the brooder going after the other chicks.

    She tilts and moves her head when I speak but does not open her eyes. She can move her legs and toes but makes no effort to stand - movement is done by flapping her wings wildly. She is rather big. We've been feeding them only during the day and removing their food at night, but perhaps we should have done so earlier - maybe she's just too big for her body already. :(

    Every other chick is active and moving around. Out of the 70 we have we haven't lost any yet, but she may be the first. She has not pooped since I brought her in. I'm worried she may have been injured and was unable to eat, resulting her in tiredness and lethargy or inability to stand.

    I have a picture of her to show size.

    [​IMG]

    Every now and then she makes a chirping sound and moves a bit.
     
  2. slukeplass22

    slukeplass22 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Disclaimer: I raise egg-layers, so the specifics on raising meat birds/broilers is unknown to me.

    I doubt there's much you can do. If I were trampled on by other people my size for a few minutes, I'd be in the hospital for quite a while or dead.

    Prevention (In case you weren't aware)

    Make sure the chickens have enough space. 4 sq. feet per bird at least.

    Keep a close eye out for sicknesses.

    Allow for chickens to have time outside. More outside time means less aggression which means that there's a lesser chance of injury.
     
  3. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for a quick response.

    The bird pooped and it looks like white paint mixed with brown pellets - couldn't get a picture because either the flash made it too bright or without flash it was too dark.

    She is having period tremors in her wings.
     
  4. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I believe now she may be severely dehydrated. They had a large nipple waterer that we assumed every chick was drinking from, but it's always possible she was not able to drink from it or was chased away from it. She has many of the symptoms: lethargy, weakness, diahrea, heavy breathing, wings spread, convulsions. Right now she is drinking on her own. I added food that I soaked in water. She is drinking a LOT but is very tired and continues to drink with her eyes closed and when she tilts her head back - far - is not swallowing easily. Hopefully she'll make it. Will keep her drinking and hope she pulls through, though once they hit the convulsions stage they don't always make it.
     
  5. ejcrist

    ejcrist Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Desert Hills, AZ
    I just finished processing our Cornish Crosses last Sunday. We lost 3 in the first two weeks for unknown reasons, and 8 toward the end of the 5th week due to heat stress because it got up to 100 one day and they were all over 5 pounds. Out of the surviving birds one had scissors beak and was the smallest of the lot but easily survived the heat because he wasn't over-grown. Another was crippled for some reason and I thought he'd have been the first to go, but for whatever reason he survived to the very end. He was a lot of work though. I had to manually hold him over the water fount several times a day and set him in front of a small feeder just for him. He also got trampled regularly and I have no idea how he made it to the end. I'm new to raising chickens so I don't have any insights on what's ailing your bird but it could be a variety of things from what I learned from the books. My experience has been the Cornish Crosses are prone to health issues and getting trampled compared to regular birds, and they require more intense management. I couldn't let mine out to free range due to predators but like the earlier poster said, that might have helped (exercise). In the future I plan to only raise them during the cooler months and keep them separated into groups no larger than 25. I'll also restrict feed more than I did initially - I think that allows their organs to catch up with their size. I'd do what you can for your bird but if even if he doesn't make it I'd say you're doing pretty good if he's the first loss.
     
  6. slukeplass22

    slukeplass22 Chillin' With My Peeps

    At this point...I don't know. I had a New Hampshire (this being the first time I ever raised chickens) who I found one morning laying on the ground. We seperated her and she had a similar looking poo, no brown pellets though. She was also very lethargic and weak for the last week of her life.

    Sorry that I can't help anymore.
     
  7. slukeplass22

    slukeplass22 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oh and all the symptoms above except for convulsions (she had a neck twisting thing near the end) and heavy breathing were the ones that she had.
     
  8. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry about your hen. :(

    The pullet's convulsions have stopped. She for some reason likes to lay with the tip of her beak in the water - if I move her, she gets angry and moves right back. So I'll let her lay how she wants. She isn't drinking as much now. Still breathing hard. When I dip her beak in the water she no longer tilts her head back to swallow, but she chirps.

    I wish I could help her more but right now she seems to only want to sleep...
     
  9. FireGurl26

    FireGurl26 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am a newbie to chickens. Mine are 5 and a half weeks old. Just from my EMS experience..do you think it's possible that she may have hypothermia. Maybe she isn't warm enough...looks like she doesn't have many feathers. I would definitely put her in some good heat and see if she perks up. Also, give warm water to drink
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2016
  10. arrowti

    arrowti Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Her brooder was almost 85 degrees due to how hot it was outside and the heat lamps themselves. Anything is possible.

    I'm surprised she made it through the night. Most of the afternoon she didn't drink or move, and didn't make a sound. She just laid there, breathing hard, head twitching. Last night she finally drank a bit again, but no noises. This morning, she is making some noise but isn't looking much better. She lays with one wing spread and has small tremors in it. When she drank last night I noticed she had trouble swallowing. I checked her mouth and throat with a flash light but didn't see anything. She is still pooping. Opens her eyes a bit more today, and drinks. I don't know if she's eaten at all. I've checked for a crop and found nothing.

    All other brooder chicks are healthy and active today. Perhaps this one is failing to thrive?
     

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