Help. Day Old Weak Chick

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mychickenbrood, Oct 31, 2012.

  1. mychickenbrood

    mychickenbrood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I got a shipment of 26 chicks today. Two were dead and one died shortly thereafter. I checked on the chicks several times. They are in a tub with a light and the usual chicken brooder stuff.

    This afternoon, one was lying on her back. I picked it up and it didn't even move, just breathing hard and rapidly. I was going to just hold it until it died, but then couldn't give up so easily. So I gave it water with a dropper. It perked up a little. It wanted to sleep, but the other chicks were running all over it. So I brought it in and set up a light and so on, and fed it a dropper full of chick-starter mixed with warm water.

    Since then, it has been chirping away and can stand up. I was hoping it would sleep.

    My question is, is there anything else to do? Should I put it back in with the other chicks tonight, if it is fairly vigorous? It is one of the smallest of the bunch.

    Thanks.
     
  2. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    If the chick is acting normal, yes, put it back with the others. Next time you have a weak chick, a quick fix would be to give it warm sugar water from an eyedropper. Good job!
     
  3. mychickenbrood

    mychickenbrood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I did give some sugar water to one earlier, but am not sure if it was the one I mentioned in this post. I found another that was a little weak during my next check, so brought her in too. They are both eating a little and drinking, but one is much better than the other. I decided to set them up with a heater and light (some heat there, but not like the red light I have on the other chicks) thus the heater, to be sure the room is warm enough.

    I hope they make it.

    I had over 50 chicks on my last shipment and lost five total I think, over four days. Some were exotics. This shipment took two days to reach me, so I think it might have affected them more.
     
  4. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    As I was reading your post, I was wondering if there were delays involved. And, with the temperatures as they've been ... I had keets arrive in similar condition, with one dead for some period during shipment, and lost a few within the first few days as well w/o warning. One thing that I thought of later was that all the rest trampled all about that shipping container, and most probably pecked around on the remains. So, those that passed had most probably considerably higher levels of botulism in their mouths/gut, and probably died as a result of the toxins this bacteria produces.

    One treatment for this is the inclusion of Apple Cider Vinegar, at the rate of four teaspoon to the gallon (but not in galvanized metal containers), which does a whole lot of other good things for your birds. This also removes the mucus from their systems, allowing them to take in the nutrients/vitamins better, as well as the amprolium from medicated feed. I no longer give it continuously at full concentration, but in a cycle in which I reduce it by one teaspoon progressively, and then increase it again, but it should be given for at least three days, adjusting if req'd, with the target being 5~6 pH. I also filter the chlorine from all water offered, as this alone has improved intake by 6-8% (in my own non-clinical un-scientific tests, that is ~'-)

    Hope the rest continue to do well ...
     
  5. mychickenbrood

    mychickenbrood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank-you both for your responses. I appreciate the information so much. I had hopes she would perk up some more. I kept her very warm and gave her some electrolyte (home made) replacement, but she died in spite of my best efforts. The other chick is fine and I put her back in with the others this morning.

    The vinegar is a good idea, as is water without chlorine. I had no idea there was botulism in the mouth. Glad I washed well after handling though. I did notice there seemed to be some mucus that interfered with her ability to swallow.

    It did take about 48 hours for them to get to me, so I do believe that was a big factor in two being dead when they arrived. Poor little chicks. The one that died this morning was very tiny too.

    I know day old chicks are fragile. Sometimes they just aren't going to live no matter what we do, but I appreciate the tips and information I've gotten in response and what I have learned from searching this site, so thanks again.
     
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

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    Sorry for your loss... The mucus in the mouth is often just part of the dying process. I have seen this 100's of times with all of the chicks that I have tried to rescue from the local feed store. Don't be too hard on yourself, you did what you could. Take care of yourself and enjoy your new chicks.
     
  7. cowcreekgeek

    cowcreekgeek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You're welcome, and I second the other's response to your loss ... despite my bein' the 'technician by attrition' to so many folks' animals down through the years, I felt a bit useless in my efforts w/ those that died shortly after arrival ... and, even for havin' had 'em sent, for a short while. But, I'm over that, now ...

    Won't be no time 'til your gonna wish they were this little all over again ~'-)
     
  8. mychickenbrood

    mychickenbrood Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They are cute little things, aren't they?

    My Pet Chicken had some suggestions that I had not seen prior to their death, so I thought I would pass it on. You can give them some finely chopped egg yolk or warmed yogurt, to get them over the hump. I'm going to remember that for the next time.

    Thanks again everyone. The rest are doing very well! :)
     
  9. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

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    Crickets and mealworms are easy to force feed if they're the right size. Enjoy your chicks.
     

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