Head Tilt and loss of Balance

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by nwgirl, Jan 29, 2015.

  1. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yesterday afternoon I noticed my hen kept falling to the left. She would try and balance herself with her left wing. It didn't stop her from pecking at some seed on the ground though. I picked her up to inspect her and she turned her head to the left. I removed her from the rest of the flock, made a safe place for her in the house. Last night there were times when her head was turned and facing her back. Appetite is good, she is drinking water, stool looks normal, breathing good, nasal passages clear, eyes look good.

    Does anyone have any ideas of what could be going on with her? Any suggestions on how I should approach caring for her?
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2015
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    She could have wry neck, but I would watch for other symptoms that could be signs of Mareks disease, such as lameness, drooping wings, limp neck, or eye problems. Wry neck is best treated with vitamins, since it can be a symptom of a vitamin deficiency, a head injury, or diseases such as Mareks and others. Give a small amount of egg daily since it contains selenium, and vitamin E and thiamine are the important vitamins to give. She may need help eating enough and drinking, so watch to see if she can do that. There is not time schedule on wry neck, since it can be caused by so many things.
     
  3. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you.
     
  4. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Does anyone else have any ideas of what this could be? I haven't seen her eat or drink today. I'm going to offer her some scrambled eggs here pretty soon.
     
  5. blusea23

    blusea23 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have a pullet that hasn't had good balance for a couple of days now,too. She stands and walks ok, but is really wobbly. I haven't noticed a list to one side or the other, and she is eating and drinking. She hasn't changed since I first noticed 4 days ago. I'm really puzzled, wondering if I should give her some vitamins and time, or cull. Thoughts?
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Vitamins are very inexpensive, so I would try them. Also make sure she is drinking well. Mareks disease is something that looks like a lot of problems, and I would try to determine what is wrong exactly, since it can affect the health of your whole flock if it were Mareks. Dehydration, coccidiosis, and other things can look like Mareks. If you have to cull, you probably ought to get a necropsy done by your state vet.
     
  7. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I ordered Avia Charge 2000 online but until then I have been administering 3 drops a day of Poly-vi-sol without iron. Plus I've been feeding tuna, scrambled eggs, yogurt and applesauce which is what I add the vitamins to. Shortly after starting her on the vitamins she had runny stool, but eventually that cleared up.

    UPDATE: I see an improvement in the last 5 days. She's been eating and drinking more. Since she's been doing better I've been giving her dried mealworms so she can scratch and peck. If anything it helps break up the boredom of being in a box in my office. A couple days ago she started scratching at her ears but not as frequent today. She's still a little off balance but her neck isn't as twisted as much.

    Something new I've noticed, she started clicking her beak a couple of days of being in the house. Mostly during and right after eating. Any ideas why she's doing that?
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    There is a thread here on BYC called "Not an emergency, Mareks in the flock," that is good to read. One lady recently had described her hen who had Mareks made a clicking sound, then later another had it. I don't know if that is significant, and I haved never read about such a thing, but justg wanted to mention that she saw it.
     
  9. CuriousChicken

    CuriousChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 26, 2010
    My roo is currently having head tilt and disorientation problems, he's not lethargic as a mater of fact the disorientation seems to be making him cranky. He's also wiping his head alot, and scratching at the ear he has tilted toward the ground. I'm pretty sure its not wry neck since he gets unsalted roasted peanuts daily, which are rich in selenium, vit E and thiamin. It's not a neck injury, since he woke up with it yesterday morning and I'm pretty sure he didn't hurt himself during the night. He sleeps in a parrot cage next to my bed, if he had made enough commotion to hurt himself that badly I would have heard it.

    It could be Mareks, but he's still got a healthy appetite, he's is drinking water, stool looks normal, breathing good, nasal passages clear, clear eyes. He did get in the shower with me the day before the head tilt problems, and we live on a catchment system (please read teaming with bacteria). So I'm treating for an ear infection with peroxide, I'm going to call around today and see about getting him in to see a vet.

    Is there anything I'm missing? Other possibilities that I'm not aware of.
     

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