Just hatched baby Serama chick having motor difficulties- can it be helped?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Bocktobery 10, Jul 13, 2016.

  1. Bocktobery 10

    Bocktobery 10 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi!

    Just had my first hatch of Serama chicks. I have one that is having problems. Doesn't move around too much, isn't going for food like the other chicks, isn't really peeping too much either. Just kind of wants to be under mamma hen all the time.

    Side note here: If it helps to know, there was one that died while hatching and it had a swollen abdomen where the cord meets the belly button (infection?).

    I've noticed that it has a lump in its neck in the front bottom of neck. I have put drops of water on the tip of the beak to get her some nourishment but even that seems difficult for her to manage to open the beak and swallow. She seems dizzy/drunk just by the way her head moves- backwards and up and a bit side to side- slowly. Again, she does not walk around or move around much. She can move her feet- I've put her upside down to see them kick and she does have fast reflexes and seems ok there. The problems seem to stem more around the neck and this lump- its almost as if her bones may be fused somewhere or she doesn't have proper use of muscles or even developed muscles in the neck area. I'm not sure what the lump is- only that the other chicks do not have this, but it feels like its bone. Her head seems to lumber outstretched more than the other chicks as this is how she is found laying most of the time. She can tuck her head in though- maybe not all the way- I shoudl go and test that (carefully). Again, she doesn't seem to have much control of her movements, or that she is dizzy. She seems to not want to move very much.

    Does anyone know what this could be? I started giving her some water with Sulmet in it yesterday when this issue first surfaced- I figured it was worth a try and this is what has brought other chicks I've had back from the brink of death... Anyway... Yesterday, she just seemed like it could be an infection because she was not moving around so much. Now with further inspection and having tried the antibiotic, I would assume that its a genetic defect or possibly something else that I do not know about.

    Has anyone ever seen this sort of thing and if so was there any remedy? I hate to not try to save her, but I do realize I might have to put her down. She is really not able to eat- even when I mix some feed up with water- its just not going down and I don't think she has the ability to swallow very well, though it appears she seems to be trying. She seems hungry- she will give a loud chip when I get her to swallow at least one drop- as of yet (begining of the second day of life) she is not peeping loudly like what you'd hear from a chick in desperate need. When I try and feed her, she lunges her beak in the air as if she wants more but can't control the head and where it goes. [​IMG] I heard once this type of thing could be a vitamin deficiency and that the right dose would clear the issue up... just wondered if anyone knew anything that could help. I want to try first before I give up on the situation.

    Thanks in advance for any replies.
     
  2. BoomChickaPop

    BoomChickaPop Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like she has a defect or wry neck. She won't last long!
    Someone will prob give you a better answer

    BCP
     
  3. Bocktobery 10

    Bocktobery 10 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks BoomChickPop for your reply. I realize she may not last long, but I'm going to give it my best. She's a darling little thing.

    In the meantime, I have been searching... I did find something that sounded like it... 'stargazing'... only her neck does not go back all the way or even point up or back.. She can't seem to hold her head still- not that its violently shaking back and forth or anything, but sort of like what you'd find with someone that might have Parkinson's disease- that- and the fact she walks backwards only. She cant' walk forwards. She can hop forward a bit but then stops. In a word, she looks a bit drunk or dizzy all the time.

    Anyway, this sounds like what it could be and some people said it might be treated with Thiamine (vit B12 I think?) and Vitamin E. Some said to just give her some Nutri-Drench.. and so that is what I did. Now its just a waiting game I suppose. I'm going to keep treating her to the nutri drench hourly see if that helps. (Its watered down a lot of course)
     
  4. BoomChickaPop

    BoomChickaPop Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I PM'd someone who knows alot about chicks. Hopefully she will respond soon


    -BCP
     
  5. Bocktobery 10

    Bocktobery 10 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks BoomChickaPop. Much appreciated!
     
  6. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I'm sorry you are having trouble.

    It's possible it could be wry neck or crookneck which is a neurological symptom of several conditions, such as a vitamin E deficiency and certain diseases( Mareks, Avian Lymphoid Leukosis, Newcastles,) or from a head injury. Treatment is Vitamin E and selenium, which are both in your Poultry Nutridrench or Poultry Cell.

    Hopefully if it is wry neck you will see some improvement within a few days.

    I don't know a lot about hatching, but there's always the possibility that something went wrong there or she may just fail to thrive, so be hopeful, but prepare yourself too[​IMG]

    This chick is older in the video, but it may give you help on how to get some food and vitamins into her, if you have trouble you may have to try to syringe/tube feed fluids. @casportpony is an expert at tube feeding so she may have some helpful tips on such a young baby.



    Tube feeding
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/805728/go-team-tube-feeding

    Here's some info on wry neck:
    http://www.raising-happy-chickens.com/wry-neck.html
    http://www.browneggblueegg.com/Article/Crookneck/Crookneck.html
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/97121/lets-talk-wry-neck-crook-neck
     
  7. Bocktobery 10

    Bocktobery 10 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks so much Wyorp.. This is helpful and I appreciate any replies.

    I did realize last night after watching some videos on you tube that what I'm dealing with here with this chick is 'stargazing' or 'crookneck'.. Although she does not seem as bad as those chicks I've seen in those videos. Her head does not roll back all the way and her neck does not go limp (I realize its probably all the same thing) Anyway, I was hopeful that she was going to start to change after starting her on Nutridrench, but I can't say that I am seeing any signs of improvement. Well, maybe one- she seems to be able to coordinate a bit better- I've seen her try and dry off and fluff her down under her wings without problem- and when I drop feed her the nutridrench water, she will try and peck at it, albeit missing the mark entirely. She still seems 'drunk'. She still doesn't move when under my broody hen. She still does not eat on her own and she still does only walk backwards.

    Its been about 24 hours now of feeding her only nutridrench watered down. (Tried to go by what it says on the bottle on how to mix it) Should I be seeing a lot of improvement by now? I am worried that I will need to tube feed her but I do not have the equipment to do that for a chick. Where do you get that sort of equipment in a rush in a small town? Anyway, I figured since newly hatched chicks have about three days of going without food, she would be ok until about the third day, which is tomorrow. I think I need to start her on something solid tomorrow, but I do not know how. I do have some baby parrot feed- but it smells a bit off- should I try and give that to her? I'm thinking if she can just be tube fed while getting the dosage of vitamins up, maybe she will pull through.. but so far I have not seen much difference and I'm wondering if this means there is not a lot of hope with this case.

    Yeah, I realize that this could go either way. Its difficult to prepare for the worst, you get attached while caring for them, but there is no way I'm giving up without trying.

    Thanks everyone for your replies. If anyone else has anything to comment add or suggest, I would thankfully love to hear it.
     
  8. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It may take a while before you see improvement.
    I would try wet chick starter.
    As far as tube feeding you may want to pm @casportpony , she will be able to tell you how to feed one sooooo small and suggest where to get supplies. Most likely a feed or pet store.

    I hope she pulls through for you.
     
  9. Bocktobery 10

    Bocktobery 10 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks again Wyorp.

    She's the same today. She's starting to act very hungry... and tired. [​IMG] She darted her head everywhere trying to get the food when I held it up to her beak. She just can't move her head correctly or get her beak to open. I did manage to put some mushy feed on my finger and she kind of scraped it off while nibbling, so a little sustenance got in there. She also seems maybe she is blind? How could one tell if she is?

    I've been feeding her about 1/2 cc of (drop by drop) Nutridrench every three hours. Is this enough? Should it be hourly? Will the vitamin water hold her through, or does she absolutely need something of substance? After I feed her the nutridrench water, she seems to get tired. I hope this is normal and not a sign of slipping. I'm just thinking her tummy is full and she is content, for a while.

    I have spoken with Kathy before on tube feeding, and I have done it before- not on a chick, but adult chickens. I realize this is the next step. I'm just about to call a local avian vet- I would assume they have supplies there. If I'm at a loss after that, I'll contact Kathy again.

    This is a serama chick, so its even tinier than a regular sized chick and so that worrying about finding a tube small enough that will let food pass through it. I really feel like if I could just get some food in her, she might pull through this. She is not in horrible shape...not yet at least- she will be if she doesn't get fed soon.... she just can't get the motor faculties to work correctly yet.

    Anyway, thanks for the replies.
     
  10. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    That is plenty Nutri-Drench.
    Hopefully the Avian vet will have what you need. I'm sure she is tiny little thing because of her breed, but I would think the vet is used to small birds (?) I'm think finches maybe?
    Yes, she will need to start having some nutrition, so if you can get the right tubes/syringes to get some food into her, I'm hoping she will improve for you.

    Let us know how it goes.
     

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