Limping duck, 10 mo. old, inflamed leg, How to fix? Help!

bingobangomango

Hatching
Dec 16, 2020
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I have a 10 month old Pekin who has developed a nasty limp on her right leg a week ago.

I inspected for cuts or bumble -foot and didn't find evidence of either. I dose all my ducks with niacin supplements while they're growing and currently as they are on a chicken/mixed flock layer feed. Her weight is normal. Appetite is normal. Poop is normal. Overall temperament is normal.

Her right leg is very hot to the touch - possibly inflamed? I'm unsure how to keep her off of her bad leg. Do I put her in a small cage so she sits? Right now it is winter so her swimming pool has completely frozen.

Note: Her sister developed a severe limp two months ago and eventually succumbed to her illness after a month of trying to fix it. I tried everything to help her as I thought it was a niacin deficiency or a bad sprain. Which is why I'm reaching out to this forum; I don't know what else to do.

Please help me help my duck. I don't want her to die from her limp like her sister did. It broke my heart.
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
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99,071
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Iowa
Could you post a video of her trying to walk? In addition, with the swelling, is there any edema?

Ducks can suffer from several leg problems, including strains/trauma, nutritional-related deficiencies, toxicosis(heavy metal), mycoplasma synovitis, and bacterial infections in the leg, often due to an erosion of the plantar surface allowing bacteria, most commonly staphylococcus to enter.

Most frequently in adult ducks, limping/lameness is going to be related to the trauma of sorts, such as strains or sprains. That might be the case with your bird, but, if you saw similar symptoms in another bird of your flock, it could be something more serious, and contagious like Mycoplasma synovitis. Unless testing is done by your vet, or state lab, you won't be able to know for sure if that's the problem.

If a vet is not an option, you may just keep the duck penned up, to reduce movement, and allow easier access to feed and water. Soaking the leg in Epsom salts, making sure her pen is padded well, administering B vitamins, and omega 3's may be beneficial. Allowing her to swim in deep cool water to reduce swelling, and exercise the legs would be good too.

Addressing some of the inflammation going on, you can try dissolving one 325mg aspirin tablet in 250ml of water, and see if she takes to that.

If the lameness still persists, you could try starting her on an antibiotic like Enrofloxacin, or Clindamycin, which would help address something like mycoplasma, or a bacterial infection/bone infection. Both can be obtained online, OTC, in fish or bird form.

https://allbirdproducts.com/products/baytril-10
 

bingobangomango

Hatching
Dec 16, 2020
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6
Could you post a video of her trying to walk? In addition, with the swelling, is there any edema?

Thank you! I will post a video of her limping tomorrow. Right now she is sleeping. There is no edema or difference from the left leg other than the temperature (right limp leg being hotter).
 

bingobangomango

Hatching
Dec 16, 2020
4
0
6
Could you post a video of her trying to walk? In addition, with the swelling, is there any edema?

here’s a video of her walking. Her limp seems less severe in the morning. I need to grab her and check for swelling and inflammation again. I might quarantine her inside and give her a pool to swim in and take the weight off of her leg.

I’ve also noticed she’s stopped cleaning herself as frequently and she’s getting pretty dirty. That’s what her sister did before she died. So I’m very worried right now. I always provide her with a bunch of fresh water to swim or eat/drink daily and she’s not using it to clean anymore.
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
24,258
99,071
1,331
Iowa
I don't see much of a limp in the video, however, she does have an odd gait, but that is pretty normal with a breed like a Pekin. The hard substrate can be conducive to leg-related problems, so I would really try to attempt to figure out how you can make it softer. Especially as they age, heavyweight breeds/meat birds like Pekins tend to get lazy, and you may find it necessary to set her in the water a few times a day to encourage preening habits. Lightly misting her feathers may be good too.
 

bingobangomango

Hatching
Dec 16, 2020
4
0
6
I don't see much of a limp in the video, however, she does have an odd gait, but that is pretty normal with a breed like a Pekin. The hard substrate can be conducive to leg-related problems, so I would really try to attempt to figure out how you can make it softer. Especially as they age, heavyweight breeds/meat birds like Pekins tend to get lazy, and you may find it necessary to set her in the water a few times a day to encourage preening habits. Lightly misting her feathers may be good too.
I agree, her limp has lessened since it’s snowed. Maybe she’s been spending less time on it? I’ve brought her inside in the mean time and she has a soft area to be in and a little pool. Once she’s better I’ll bring her back outside and see how she does.
Thanks for your help.
 

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