Lame chicken questions

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by FirstTimeClucky, Feb 14, 2017.

  1. FirstTimeClucky

    FirstTimeClucky Songster

    Feb 13, 2017
    I just adopted a copper marans hen who won't put weight on her left leg. The previous owner didn't take her to a vet and thought the bad leg could be due to an infestation of scaly leg mites which she says she cured. They kept her in isolation for three weeks but the leg didn't get better.

    When I got her home I examined her thoroughly. She seems underweight, I can easily feel her keel bone when I pick her up. Her comb is slightly faded at the back, and her "ear lobes" are also pale. Her wattles and the front part of her comb are red.

    There is no sign of scaly mites on her legs. I inspected right up to her "knees" (where feathers grow). One of her feet looks slightly thicker than the other. Her feet are not hot and are the same temperature. I felt the toes, feet and up the legs as far as the hip and found no swellings or signs of a fracture. I bent the joints and pressed the bottom of her left foot, but she did not flinch or make any sound when I examined her. Both legs and feet have the same range of motion.

    I examined her feathers and skin and could see no sign of lice, mites or any other parasite. I do have Ivermectin (oral solution) and Worm-X as well as a residual permethrin external parasite spray. I haven't treated her with these, but I plan to in a week or two.

    Her breathing is normal with no sounds. She eats well. Her poop appears normal. She is alert and makes "bawwwwwwwk" sounds when I enter the room and while I'm near her. She spends the majority of her time lying down on her belly or side, next to her food dish (she places herself there). She can get up and hops on one leg to move around.

    So now the questions:
    How can I tell if she's in pain? Do they make a sound? Are there other signs I should look for? I know most animals hide their pain. Is there any natural supplement or food I could give her that would help?

    What's the best way to get their weight up? Right now I'm feeding her layer pellets from her previous owner, and a concoction I give to sick or stressed birds. It contains shredded romaine lettuce (or other greens), Perle Morbide (a supplement that mimics the nutrition of sprouted seeds), bee pollen (vitamins and Omega 3), boiled quail egg with shell or fish meal, and trace mineral powder. I also add an herbal supplement called Guardian Angel which helps stressed and ill birds. I'm giving her pigeon grit which contains oyster shell, granite chips, kelp, and a vitamin supplement. She LOVES the green concoction. Do they need salt, as pigeons do?

    I noticed her claws are quite long, probably from not walking or scratching. Is it a good idea to trim them?

    I keep a worm composter with "red wigglers" - are they safe to feed to a chicken? Are they nutritious for chickens?

    Is it a good idea for me to pick her up and move her a bit every day, to encourage her to stand and try to walk? Or should I wait a while first?
  2. MasterOfClucker

    MasterOfClucker Songster

    Jul 19, 2016
    I would cut down on all the supplements and just give her poultry vitamins orally with a syringe and offer her eggs and tuna often.Make sure she is warm.You can buy poultry vitimans at any local feed store look for Poultry Nutri Dench or Sav-a-Chick.Bring her in the sun once and a while and encourage her to walk.Trim her toe nails with dog nail clippers if it starts bleeding apply corn starch to it.Her owner's probably treated her terrible long nails means lack of exercise. Dont give her salt.
  3. FirstTimeClucky

    FirstTimeClucky Songster

    Feb 13, 2017
    Sorry I forgot to mention, I don't give all of the supplements at once. Usually it's one per day, so one day they get bee pollen, the next they get mineral powder etc. I have fish meal powder that I mix in for protein and nutrients. They get boiled egg every two or three days (whenever my button quail lay enough eggs). The main thing they get every day is the greens. Right now I have a diamond dove pair on eggs and they're getting this mixture as well.

    I don't live near a feed store but I've seen the Save a Chick online. I'll order some.

    Re the nails, I think they're caused by her lying down most of the time. I'm using pine shavings as bedding and she's on a thick layer of shavings. I'll trim her nails and then I'll put a couple of ceramic floor tiles upside down under the bedding. That might help to file her nails when she does walk.
  4. Yemimah

    Yemimah In the Brooder

    Feb 12, 2017
    Are you certain that you checked the bottom of her feet? Can you take a picture of the bottom of her foot ? I have dealt with bumblefoot in a breed that was prone to this and it is not easy to tell sometimes. It is like having a huge painful pimple the size of a cherry to the size of a marshmallow right in the center of their foot. Can you take a picture?
  5. Marcelina

    Marcelina In the Brooder

    Jun 16, 2017
    IMG_7932.JPG IMG_7934.JPG Hello, I am new to chickens, my cubalaya is young and just started laying eggs three weeks ago, the last couple of days after she lays her eggs she poops a large amount of blood. It is Sunday and it will be impossible for me to find a vet. Yesterday she seemed fine but today she is kind of just sitting? She has free range of our home, could shehave hurt herself ? Please help.

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