Injured duck leg- possibly broken. Need advice!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Henny Penny04, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. Henny Penny04

    Henny Penny04 In the Brooder

    Apr 15, 2011
    Today one of my children tripped while picking up our 8 week old runner, Oreo. The duck's leg is limp, he tried pulling himself along with his wings. There is no visible break or dislocation on the leg itself, so can I assume the problem is in his hip? I've seen many ducks with broken legs get along fine in life, as they can sometimes swim, etc. However, we're terrestrial here. He needs to walk, or limp along. Any thoughts on this problem? Does anyone have any prior experience with broken or dislocated legs? He was from a runt egg and already has a lot of developmental issues. He's small and often shakes when he stands for more than a few minutes (yes, with niacin). I have put him and his friend in their night pen with the hopes that some rest and quiet will help him with the pain. Your experienced input is greatly appreciated.
  2. TLWR

    TLWR Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    southern AL
    See if you can find an avian vet or one that deals with farm animals and can do something with ducks.
    In the meantime, keep him quiet and maybe let him swim around for a bit - in the tub if you don't have another spot to do so.
  3. chi-chick

    chi-chick In the Brooder

    Mar 24, 2011
    It is not always easy to feel a broken leg. The leg could be dislocated,esp at the hip joint, or there could be neurological damage. Keep him alone in a small house,with easy access to food and water, and take him to the vet in the morning.
  4. DuckyMom

    DuckyMom Chirping

    Sep 7, 2010
    Upstate NY
    This sounds exactly like what happened with my 2 year old runner Frances (also a runt duckling). She was walking past a gate that my mom left insecure by accident and it fell on top of her. This was 6 months ago. It began with her being unable to walk and the problem seemed to be her hip. After keeping her indoors for 3 days she was able to walk with a limp. It has been 3 months now and the limp slowly has improved. Now she walks with no limp at all and acts as if nothing has happened.

    Ducks are sturdy animals, and can manage really well with disabilities. The only reason you should worry is because Oreo is so young. He is not done growing and a break or dislocation could become much worse as he grows. On the other hand this is benificial, he can heal faster and is more likly to adapt to his new lifestyle.

    You can splint the leg if you feel comfortable with this, but it may just cause him more discomfort.

    The best options would be giving him lots of time in a lukewarm bath to take the pressure off of the leg, giving him Tri-Vi-Sol drops (Enfamil brand baby vitamin) in his drinking water (this will help with the shaking too), And contacting an avian vet for either more advice or a consultation.

    The most importaint thing right now is keeping Oreo comfortable and reminding your son that he's goning to be alright, and this is the kind of thing that happens to even the most experienced and careful duck keepers. [​IMG]

    I hope this helps. Keep us posted!
  5. CrzyChicLady

    CrzyChicLady Chirping

    Oct 28, 2010
    I had the same thing happen to one of my muscovy ducklings. My son was getting out of the pool and stepped on it. The duckling was moving it's leg when I was holding it and I couldn't see any visible breaks. But when i put it down and it would try to walk it wasn't using the one leg at all! I was very worried and posted here for some help and a "Golden Feather" member replied and said not to worry, little ducks bones will heal fast. She was right! It took about 2 weeks but my duckling is getting along like there's no problem. I hope your lil' duckling gets better soon!! [​IMG]
  6. keyt1969

    keyt1969 Songster

    Hi HennyPenny! I had a cayuga who couldn't walk on one leg. We think she either got injured while one of the much bigger boys was having fun with her or she tripped while getting out of the big pool. She couldn't use it for almost 2 weeks. We put her in a large dog kennel because the breeding pens were full of chicks and ducklings. She liked it in there I think. She laid down for over a week and didn't do much but eat and drink. As time went on she began to stand up more and put weight on the leg. Now she's back in general population.

    I've tried splinting a duck leg before years ago and it never worked. It ended up hurting itself more out of frustration and fear. When we put Sasha (the cayuga) in the extra large dog carrier, twice a day we put her in a duckling pool so she could take the weight off which she really liked. She would just float as if it felt good. The rest of the time she just laid down until it appeared it felt good to stand up.
  7. Henny Penny04

    Henny Penny04 In the Brooder

    Apr 15, 2011
    Thanks for the information everyone. So, perhaps there's hope for him after all. Emily, I'll try the drops as well. He doesn't seem healthy as it is, so that will definitely help overall. I'm not sure we can afford a vet for a duck, but it looks like we do have some local. I'll call when their office opens. Who know, maybe it will be affordable.

    Keyt, I was thinking of your Cayuga when I put our duck in his pen. I'm also hoping for a similar recovery after some quiet time.

    I appreciate your quick responses. He seems content enough to be eating and drinking and is quacking for peas. Hopefully this has a happy ending.
    Thank you!
  8. TLWR

    TLWR Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    southern AL
    Quote:A farm vet will likely be cheaper than an avian vet. When we brought Blue to the vet, the bill was $16 - though not much was done other than showing us how to wrap her wing. But they should be able to give you suggestions if you can't afford a visit.
    1 person likes this.
  9. flashy43

    flashy43 Hatching

    Mar 12, 2015
    Currently, I am having a similar problem with my female duck. At first we noticed she was limping slightly but then thought she was getting better. But now she wont move at all (sometimes a little bit but the most has only been about a foot). We keep her in the bottom part of an old hamster cage with straw. We also have a drake and maybe thought her injuries were from him climbing onto her as she also has a small bald spot on her head. From what we can see, her leg is turned to the side which is why we think it may be dislocated. On the other side of her body she doesn't move her wing so at one point we thought she was limping because it was putting her off balance but since noticing her leg, we think that may be the reason. We have been giving her a bath/shower every day to a few days to clean her up as she basically sits in her poo. Once cleaned we start to fill the bath up so she can clean herself and not have all her weight on her legs.

    Any comments are welcome as we are not sure what to do.

    Also I know this thread was so long ago, so if anyone does reply I will be so grateful.
  10. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I just saw this post . . .


    So, at this point, the drake and the duck (female) are separated? Yes, he may have injured her.

    Time floating in a lukewarm bath (no soap) is good for her.

    She may have internal injuries, or she may have sprains and be able to recover. She needs good quality food, fresh water, a safe, quiet place to rest.

    A good duck vet is best.

    Ducks can recover from serious injury, so don't be quick to give up on her.

    I would get some poultry vitamins into her water twice a week. I would put Epsom Salt compresses on her leg and foot, and rub a tiny bit of T-Relief ointment on both legs at night.

    Do you know how to do compresses?

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