Help! Neurologic Chick!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ydolem, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. ydolem

    ydolem In the Brooder

    Mar 13, 2011
    I just hatched out some chicks for the first time, and I've run into some issues. I have a few that I think are mushy, but I'm not so worried about them. From what I've read, they might not make it long anyway.

    I have one chick that's got a funky leg. It hops around well-enough, but one leg totally sticks out weird and it lays sideways because it can't support itself.

    And I have another chick with some serious issues. It throws its head back so that it's on its back, and waves it back and forth. Sometimes, it almost falls asleep with its head all the way back. And if it stands while it leans its head back, it sometimes falls over backwards. It eats fine, is drinking, moves around fine, responds to stimuli, and is peeping happily.

    I suspect a vitamin E deficiency, but I don't know how that can show up in day-old chicks who have constant access to good commercial food, hatched from parents who were on the same. I've added a bit of sugar and tetramycin (something like that) to the water.

    Please help me!! I love animals way too much sometimes, and this is really emotionally hard on me, because I feel utterly helpless to help these little critters I brought into the world.
  2. hennyannie

    hennyannie Songster

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    I have 2 Ancona chicks I got from a local feed store that are doing the same thing. They seemed fine when I bought them home thursday.
  3. hennyannie

    hennyannie Songster

    Mar 12, 2011
    North Carolina
    I have raised lots of chicks, some I got local, some from TSC, some from big hatcheries. I have never had a chick with these severe leg probs.
  4. briteday

    briteday Songster

    Dec 16, 2008
    Northern NV
    I have one from the feed store with a funny leg problem. It first started curling up the foot, then it wouldn't walk on it or would fall over. So I separated it for a few days, dosed it with a drop of polyvisol (no iron, infant vitamins you can get at any store) twice per day, and made sure it was eating and drinking. She's now back in the big brooder and seems to be doing ok although she is smaller than her hatchmates.
  5. ydolem

    ydolem In the Brooder

    Mar 13, 2011
    ok, so i had one that would fall over a lot and just lay there (i once had to peel him off of the bowl i'd put him in to keep him separate), and i didn't think he'd make it at first, but when he survived the first night, i decided that if he was a fighter, then i'd fight for him, too. so, i taped his legs together, and let him sit with me for a few hours, away from the stress of healthy chicks knocking him over, and now he's totally fine. he's still smaller than the others he hatched with, but he's alive. i added B-complex to the water, as well as a bit of sugar and some duramycin. i think the vitamins really helped.

    my chick that was stargazing has also improved greatly, and although her head is still slightly back farther than the rest, she's not freaking out anymore, or resting her head on her back, so that's good news.

    i have two others, though, that are still having leg issues.

    chick#1 - refuses to use one of her legs. she keeps it curled up and raised, and won't put weight on it. i've been using a small bandaid to try to get her to use it, but it hasn't worked so far. she's still eating and drinking ok, but doesn't move around too much.

    chick#2 - leg is twisted back so that it's facing the other direction. i suspect some sort of luxation of the joint. i've been bandaid-ing his legs together, but that's not doing much. he still can get that leg twisted backwards. i'm considering splinting it somehow. he's still eating and drinking, and gets around ok, so i'm not too worried about his health right now, just his leg.

    thoughts? suggestions? i'll try pretty much anything. [​IMG]
  6. BoyetteK9

    BoyetteK9 In the Brooder

    Jan 1, 2011
    Clermont County, Ohio
    A couple weeks ago I picked up my very first chicks. After a few days, one would walk up to the feed and take a couple bits, then run around the bottom of the box backwards. I watched it do this (while laughing hysterically) 5 times in a row. I figured it would die for sure and too had neurological problems. But two weeks later, the behavior has stopped, and she seems perfectly normal now.

    Hope yours turn out okay too.
  7. slabcrappy

    slabcrappy Songster

    Mar 19, 2011
    Orchard Park, NY
    I am new to this, but I did have chicks before and I had one with the sticking out leg issue. the other 2 chicks ended up picking it really bad one day and it's innards were coming out. I had to cull it. I would definitely wait for more responses from seasoned chicken folk.

  8. ydolem

    ydolem In the Brooder

    Mar 13, 2011
    I eventually had to cull both chicks.

    I figured out that my Chick #2 had a slipped Achille's tendon, but it had gone on too long and there was too much swelling in his joints to get it back in, so I had to cull him.

    Chick #1 seemed to be doing better, but then I noticed she was walking on the back part of her foot rather than her toes, and upon closer examination, I found her one leg to be broken or else completely dislocated at the joint. It was actually bending backwards and just sort of flopping, so I culled her this morning. She had to flap her wings and fling her whole body forward to get anywhere. It was a sad sight, and there wasn't anything I could do for her.

    But my stargazer or wry neck chick is totally fine now, and shaping up to be an interesting little chick. I'm not sure of the parentage, but she's got black spots on her yellow that are turning into black feathers as she turns cream-colored.

    So, I've got 6 healthy chicks out of the bunch, which I'm ok with, since I think most of them are roosters that I'll have to sell off in a few months anyway.
  9. FMAFarms

    FMAFarms Songster

    Feb 20, 2011
    Rural Michigan
    Quote:Sorry to hear you had to cull, but that would have been my advice to you had I gotten to this thread earlier. I hope that your 6 chicklets turn out to be girls!

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