Lame chicken


In the Brooder
6 Years
Jul 31, 2013
Two days ago one of my girls started limping badly. I've kept them all in the coop/run for two days despite all of their protests but decided to let them free range tonight. She crouches down most of the time, but when she walks she's walking almost up on her toes(? for lack of better description?) and on her elbow. I can not feel or see anything abnormal with her. It almost seems like a nerve issue. Anyone have any advice? She's seems to be eating normally and is still getting up in the coop at night. I just feel bad for her because she must be in pain and she continuously does this little cluck while being pet.

Does the leg seem swollen, red, or broken? If you don't notice any visible injuries, it may be a sprain or strain. I'd keep her in a well-bedded area and provide supportive treatment, such as vitamins and electrolytes. If it's an injury, it should eventually heal.

How old is she? Another possible cause that comes to mind is Marek's Disease. It usually affects young birds, and often starts as a paralyzed leg or a limp. Slowly, it can paralyze the whole bird. Here is a link on Marek's:
Thanks guys! I can not see anything physically wrong with it. She was hatched March 3rd so she's about 7 months old. How would I go about giving a chicken asprin and how much? This just seems impossible lol. Or do I try and coat some food with it and feed her individually?

Used as a general treatment for reducing distress conditions of birds (fever or listlessness) that accompanies many diseases.

Dissolve five (5 grain) aspirin tablets in one gallon of water.

Offer this solution free-choice to the birds for the duration of an illness. The solution aspirin equivalent to 25 grains/gallon or 324 mg/gallon of drinking water. The dosage rate is about 25 mg/lb body weight per day.
From this link

From on here:
I've used a low-dose (81 mg) aspirin, crushed in a quart of water for a limping hen. She's fine now. Was given dosage by an on-line poultry friend...
From this thread
She could possibly be suffering from riboflavin (vitamin B2) deficiency, which can cause curling of the toes and sitting on hocks or elbows, or she could be showing signs of Mareks disease or other neurological disease. Can she stand on both legs, and does she seem off-balance or try to balance with her wings? Put her on B complex vitamins right away, and most farm stores sell poultry vitamins to put in water. It must contain riboflavin, so avoid Poultry Nutri-Drench.
Here are a couple of links to read:
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I have a handicap pullet about the same age as your's and there was a spurt I had to give her aspirin a couple of times, our vet said 1/4 regular, plain aspirin. I took a small piece of cheese, just enough to cover it, squished the 1/4 aspirin in that and she gobbled that "treat" right up.
Okay, I will start with an aspirin tomorrow. She is weight bearing, there is no limp-ness at all in the leg and she just hops along eating at the grass and such. I'll also see if I can't find some vitamins to add to the water. Any harm in giving them to the whole flock? Or should I just bring her inside and feed/water her seperately? She got up into her coop again tonight and even perched on the board in the doorway opening (they don't roost) like normal. I will also keep her confined a bit more than the others. This won't "alienate" her from the flock will it?
I should also add, I don't think it's a calcium deficiency because they have free access to oyster shell and I also grind up their egg shells and add it back in to their food.

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