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Lame-ish Brahma, any suggestions?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lools, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. lools

    lools Hatching

    Jan 25, 2014
    Hello, this is my first post.

    Apologies for the length of the post, I hope someone can help us shed some light on what might be wrong with our young Brahma.

    Just before Christmas our lovely Brahma, approx 20-ish weeks (or thereabouts, we think) collapsed. We brought her indoors, where she has been living in a playpen near the Rayburn ever since! We are absolutely stumped by what might be wrong with her.

    Initially, she seemed to have some leg paralysis, but having been indoors for a few days seemed to take a turn for the better so we returned her to the flock. However, she was being severely picked on by some of the warrens and took a turn for the worse again and wasn't trying to get away, so we brought her back inside.

    She was / still is very very thin, but I have been feeding her a protein rich diet along with other supplements / herbs that I have read might help (wet catfood, scrambled eggs with oregano and cinnamon, corn, coconut oil, poultry spice, alongside commercial layers pellets). She does seem to have put on a small amount of weight, but her keel is still very prominent and she feels very frail and light.

    Over xmas, she did a lot of sitting very still, but now seems more keen to move around, so on dry days we put her outside and she returns indoors at night as I am worried that returning her to the flock will be detrimental while she is still so weak.

    She seems to walk quite strangely, she lifts her legs and places them down again quite deliberately, if you know what I mean (probably not!!), but she will have a go at running if she thinks there's a tasty niblet for her. When she stands still, her legs seem to have a slight tremble, which I wonder if it is just from lack of muscle tone seeing as though she is so thin. She prefers sitting down to sleep rather than perching. She has been through a phase of sitting on her heels, but seems to have stooped that now. Also there have been a couple of occasions where one wing hangs low for a minute or two, but she does correct this. No signs of bumble foot, or any specific leg / foot lesions or injury.

    She has quite a bit of diarrhea, but is feeding and drinking well. We have dusted her for fleas / mites, which she now seems to be clear of, her small comb and face seem to be quite pale. We are currently treating her with Flubenvet. She is also wormed. Eyes seem clear and normal (i.e. not like discolourations associated with Marek's) and she is quite alert.

    Any suggestions as to what might be wrong with her, or whether there's anything else we can do for her? Should we carry on as we are, or return her to the flock? Please help! We're now really quite attached to the poor mite. Thank you.

  2. Wyandottes7

    Wyandottes7 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    Her symptoms sound a bit like Marek's Disease to me. 20 weeks is a common age for Marek's to strike. Birds with Marek's have some paralysis, trouble walking, and often feel thin because they are wasting away. Diarrhea is also common in birds with Marek's. Do you know if she was vaccinated as a chick for Marek's Disease? Discolored eyes do not always appear in a bird with Marek's, so even if you don't see that symptoms, its still possible.

    Here is a link with information on Marek's Disease:


    And, you might want to read through this thread. It has more information on Marek's:

  3. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    I agree with Wyandottes7 in that, unfortunately, she may have Marek's disease. The thinness, leg problems, and age at which this has occurred is relatively typical of Marek's. If this is the case, it might be best to humanely cull her, or try treating with a remedy like St. Johns Wort, turmeric, or colloidal silver. Or you could just wait and see. She sounds like a very sweet hen, and I hope that she gets better!
  4. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Sounds like Marek's. Don't get your hopes up about a cure, there is none. People that try SJW or colloidal silver , etc. have varying results, and none has been scientifically proven. [​IMG]
  5. lools

    lools Hatching

    Jan 25, 2014
    Thanks for the replies - sorry for taking so long to get back.

    Marek's was what I was fearing. She really seems to have perked up in herself, trembling is minimal / barely noticeable, and she leaps out of the pen and has a runaround with the kids, pinching their toast crumbs and the like, whereas before she was a lot more subdued.

    So what should I do, do you think? Do I cull her? Because she is quite perky and doesn't seem in any pain or discomfort, I'm a bit reluctant really! But if I don't, can she be returned to the flock? Will this cause any problems to our other birds? We have one other bird (a French Copper Maran) that cam from the same place as our Brahma. Is she at more risk than our other birds that I'm pretty certain have all been vaccinated? She is the same age, but is really thriving.

    Any suggestions gratefully received. I will try turmeric, and collodial silver too.

  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    There is no reason to keep her separated since she was with them all before--that maeans they all have already been exposed to it. Also, no reason to cull her if she is doing better. There can be a transient form of Mareks, where they can get better, but then later have problems with tumors. I would just keep an eye on her so that she isn't harmed or picked on, and make sure that she is eating.

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