The best way to prevent pasty butt is to make sure they have plenty of clean water at all times. I know my chicks are constantly kicking their wood chips into the water and then they don't drink as much. I find that if I put the waterers up on something like a brick or mine are on old vhs cases, then they don't get the water as mucky and they drink more and then the poop doesn't get sticky and paste em up..
Bumping this up because I'm curious. I was also told that chicks will get pasty butt if too hot. I just hatched my very first hatch and have 9 chicks, and none have pasty butt, but want to prevent it now and in the future as I plan to do a lot of hatching!
Pasty butt is quite normal. I was told many, many years ago it happens because of the change in diet . Remember they were living off their yolk while being shipped and then they are given a crumble feed. It usually goes away after a week while their digestive system gets use to the different food. Just clean it off with a little warm water and a cloth.
I've also read that heat is one cause of pasty butt. That's why it's important to provide a large enough area so that they can get away from the heat source if they want to. I had 1 with pasty butt with my very first group of chicks 2 years ago but none since after finding out about the heat.
I had 2 out of 16 with the problem. I try to catch it befor it stats to dry. They are 8 days old now and last night they were all clean. I dont know how or why a few get it, but its only a few and it looks like I might be done cleaning furry little butts.
I was at a feed store yesterday and looked in a watering tank that they keep chicks in to sell. There was one lone chick in it with pasty butt. I felt sorry for it and talked to the clerk about it. He cleaned the little thing. I hope it will make it.