Help please-Silkie can barely walk, getting worse.


In the Brooder
5 Years
Aug 16, 2014
Anyone have any ideas what could be wrong with my 3-year old silkie hen? About a week ago, I noticed her acting strange and discovered she was limping. I've checked all over her feet and legs and can't find any kind of cut or bumble foot. She can kick both legs and move feet-so not broke. She's having a hard time getting to food and water, so I've been bringing her inside in the afternoons through morning to make sure she gets enough food/water. Before it was just kind of a limp, but today it's like she can barely get her legs under her, she's panting, and not eating as much. I can't find anything externally wrong, I can't even tell which leg is actually hurt. Thanks for your help!
I would give her some vitamins/electrolytes (chick starter, rooster booster, etc) just in case it's a vitamin deficiency or dehydration. It may not hurt to administer a wide spectrum antibiotic if it's available to you. Was she vaccinated for Marek's Disease as a chick? Silkies are notoriously prone to contract the disease, and if this is indeed the diagnosis - the outlook is unfortunately grim...

Best of luck...
Thank you for your help. Others were vaccinated, but she wasn't, the hatchery said bantam chicks are too small. I was thinking it wasn't mareks, because she's 3 years old, but she has no control of her legs now. I was giving electrolytes, and just started putting B-complex in her water.
Most hatcheries won't vaccinate bantams but it's 100% false that they're too small to vaccinate successfully. Ideal Poultry will vaccinate them. I have bantams and vaccinate chicks myself. I imagine most hatcheries handle their birds relatively rough and have issues with injury and mortality in bantams as a result. It doesn't help your current situation, but I'd look for a breeder who vaccinated or order the vaccine & administer it yourself in the future. Do you hatch at all?
Very interesting and helpful, thank you. I let my silkie hatch a few fertilized eggs last year. I kept one hen, but I live in the city, so I don't do much hatching. After this experience, I'm definitely going to look into ordering the vaccine. I've been giving her Vitamin B complex and Hypericum, but I haven't seen any improvement. I can barely get her to eat or drink. I'm pretty certain it is Marek's.
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