1. Eric Kansican

    Eric Kansican New Egg

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    Jun 18, 2017
    1) What type of bird , age and weight (does the chicken seem or feel lighter or thinner than the others.)
    Bird is a Buff Orpington pullet, approximately 8 weeks age. It is definitely smaller and lighter than the others, but they are of different breeds and only approximately the same age. While it was the smallest when I got them all, it definitely has not put on size and weight as fast as the others.
    2) What is the behavior, exactly.
    Bird is reluctant to walk and spends most of its time bedded down on the ground. Walking is hesitant and appears painful. Wings droop and she appears to have difficulty keeping them folded up while moving. Some slight lift to the leg scales is noticeable, but not very bad.
    3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms?
    ~2 weeks
    4) Are other birds exhibiting the same symptoms?
    No. Bird is one of 4 (2 Plymouth Rocks, 1 Rhode Island Red, and her). The biggest and oldest Plymouth Barred Rock was picking on her a lot, but nothing too serious and that has waned as the flock established order. Other 3 pullets are active and healthy with no signs of trouble.
    5) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma.
    No external injury noted. Scales lifted slightly, so legs a bit rougher than the others. Rear toe tends to stay curled down towards pad of foot and front 3 toes tend to be hyperextended. I think therefore she's trying to avoid walking on the pads of her feet, but I can't see anything wrong with them, and she doesn't favor one foot over the other.
    6) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation.
    There was a possibility of leg mites. Also thought there could be an injury (to both feet?!) that I couldn't see. Other possibility I came up with is Marek's. The bird is from a small-flock breeder, so was probably not vaccinated. However, what I could find about Marek's listed an asymmetrical paralysis. Her issues seem to be bilateral and maybe not paralytic. Seems more like weakness and pain. I also thought the weakness could be (at least exacerbated by) a lack of food and water due to being run off by the bigger pullets.
    7) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all.
    Grower pellets and tap water. Will not move often to get food and water, so I try to keep a dish in her favorite shady spots so she keeps her fluids and calories up.
    8) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc.
    Poop looks normal to me. I don't have much experience though.
    9) What has been the treatment you have administered so far?
    Bathed all chicken feet with warm soapy water and coated in vaseline. Then replaced roost bar and sprinkled diatomaceous earth on all chickens, inside the coop, and made a small outdoor dust bath.
    Isolated the lame chicken for 4 days inside (its been pretty hot so I thought that might aid recovery) with own food and water. She's been back outside the last two days (only so much stink we can stand
    10 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet?
    Intend to treat independently.
    11) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help.
    12) Describe the housing/bedding in use
    Coop is ~4x4', 2.5' high roost bar (this could be a bit high, but the lame chick does not currently use), with 8" of deep-bedded leaves and woodchips.
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    I would probably suspect Mareks. If it is your bird will slowly get worse. I have had a couple of Mareks birds over the years and everyone was slightly different in the way it showed and progressed, all eventually needed culling. I would continue what you are doing in case it helps, but I would suspect the worse.
     
  3. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Hi @Eric Kansican :frow Welcome To BYC

    Can you post a video of her actions and some photos of her legs, feet and how she is laying down?

    It's possible that she may have Marek's - if this is the case, there's not much you can do but wait and see....

    So, in the meantime, try to get her hydrated. Offer her some poultry vitamins that have B2(Riboflavin) or you can crush a human B-Complex vitamin and add it to her food. To see that she eats well, you can entice her with a little chopped egg or tuna mixed with her feed.

    If you can keep her separated in the run that would be best. This will let her rest and have her own food/water (no worrying about being bullied and you don't have to put up with the stink:)).

    Check her over very well for mites/lice. Since she has Scaly Leg Mites at a tender age, she may also be suffering from an infestation - this can weaken a bird further. Getting the Scaly Leg Mites under control would be a good idea. Vaseline would need to be applied daily. Wash the legs a couple of days a week.

    Since she was being kept from food/water and being bullied, I would almost suspect that she has an injury. Some injuries (spinal/head) cannot be seen, but can have symptoms like you are seeing.

    FWIW - your coop is 4x4 - can you post some photos? Even going by the general "rule" of 4sq ft per bird for coop space, that can be some cramped quarters, especially with the large birds that you will eventually have. I love my BR, but they are a strong confident breed that can be a bit peckish at time - they are also FOOD HOGS - nobody better get the tidbit I want! RIR, I don't have those, but have read mixed reviews - they also seem to have a strong personality. BO's are for the most part kind and gentle. Consider when you can, having more coop space. Run space is very important as well - the more room you have the better. Honestly - I'm not picking on you:)

    Let us know how she's doing.

    Here's one of the best, most comprehensive articles I know of on Marek's - it also lists some "mimics" or other conditions that can have similar symptoms:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/the-great-big-giant-mareks-disease-faq.66077/
     
    Eggcessive likes this.
  4. Eric Kansican

    Eric Kansican New Egg

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    Jun 18, 2017
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9nN_VezzIU1ekdmQWwxWUtzNDg/view?usp=sharing

    Hopefully the link works... Video is a bit over a minute, but shows walking and sitting. The whining is my dog, who doesn't understand why I can go in the run while he can't. The other two chickens that make it into frame are approximately the same age, and were only slightly larger than our patient at that time (4 weeks ago).

    So far the RIR has been very good. Is the second-friendliest behind the B.O. and is probably the most inquisitive. No real problems. Both barred rocks kind of hang out together and are more skittish. As regards the coop, I found myself wishing it was a bit bigger the first time I had to go inside to repair things for sure. My plan is to let them have the run all day, which has ~450 square feet including some compost piles for them to entertain themselves with. The whole area is behind a 6 ft fence sheltered under junipers, so it should be cozy enough for them to want to explore even in winter.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2017
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Could be a mild sprain, which should improve on its own. Her putting out in front may mean Mareks, if it is it will get worse fairly quickly. The next week you should see improvement, or worsening.
     
  6. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Poop looks normal?
    How hot is it where you are?

    I understand she may have a leg issue going on, but the panting, loss of balance and ruffled appearance makes Coccidiosis come to mind. None of the others are panting in the video, so I would think it's not heat related.

    Can you take a poop sample to your vet for a fecal float test? This can rule out Cocci overload.

    It's possible that it could be Marek's, she still slightly young, but it's not unheard of. If it is Marek's I agree with @oldhenlikesdogs the leg paralysis will most likely get worse.
    The leg - any swelling of the hocks?

    Try your best to keep her hydrated. It looks like she's having trouble getting around, so you may want to cage/limit her activity and give let her have her own food/water, this way she can rest and not compete for food.
     

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