Limping for Attention?

Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by Rachel96, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. Rachel96

    Rachel96 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 12, 2012
    South Australia
    A few days ago, I noticed that one of my chicks, about 6 or 7 weeks old, was dragging one foot behind and not putting any weight on it. I separated from the others and put it in a bird cage by the house for a few days, and during that time, it always had one foot curled up in a ball and limped very badly - it hated putting weight on that foot. I'm still not sure what the problem is/was.

    Today I took it out on the lawn and let it run around on the grass for a bit, as much as it could. My mum came out and I was talking to her when I noticed that the chick had its foot flattened out normally on the ground and was walking with only a very slight limp.

    Curious, I beckoned for it to come to me. It looked up at me, and took a step forwards - immediately curling up its foot and limping badly.

    Again, I looked away and watched it from the corner of my eye... absolutely fine, only a slight limp. I look at it again, it notices me looking, and suddenly it's limping around forlornly again.

    Coincidence? I think not. It's now back in with the other chicks from the same hatching. Who said chickens are stupid? They know exactly what they're about.
     
  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    A close friend has a white silkie cockerel, no, wait, I think he's now a rooster.... Anyway, he got beat up by mean and horny roosters in her flock. Each time, she'd bring him inside the house to recover, then out he'd go again in a few days.

    As the weather got colder, she or her husband would find him limping or huddled miserably more frequently. They'd bring him in, check him out, no sign of injury, but you never know, so he got to stay inside at least one night. He'd be all perky and out he'd go.

    Then she saw him fake a limp. He was bebopping along in the yard, she came down the steps and he suddenly started to limp. He didn't get to come into the house.

    But when it rained at near-freezing temperatures and he stayed out in it, sopping, to limp towards her in the yard, he got to come inside. Yes, they know he wasn't injured, but he was chilled and either too stupid to go into the coop out of the rain and sleet, or he was smart enough to make himself miserable for the subsequent cuddling ... As they warmed him up in the house.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  3. Chikenbutwut

    Chikenbutwut Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 3, 2013
    Benton, KY
    Lol, this sounds adorable and hilarious to me all at the same time! I've seen dogs do this, but never chickens. Yep, who says chickens are stupid?...apparently some figure out how to try to pull one over on their owners just like dogs do!
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  4. cluckcluckluke

    cluckcluckluke Overrun With Chickens

    What happens when it really is in pain?
    I guess you will have to look after it all the time just to make sure.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  5. Rachel96

    Rachel96 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 12, 2012
    South Australia
    I think it probably IS in pain - it still limps when I'm not watching, but only very slightly. There probably WAS something wrong a few days ago - but I have no idea what. Maybe it had sprained something? Nothing seemed swollen or in the wrong place. Who knows?

    Interestingly, I did have a quail chick once who would climb out of the brooder and deliberately jump about a metre to the floor and act concussed simply for attention - it had been accidently dropped once and was coddled for the next few days, so it worked out what to do to get the attention. I could never work out whether it was actually concussing itself all the time or just acting concussed, but I witnessed it jumping out on purpose a couple of times, and looking around to see if anyone was there before acting woozy.

    So much for chickens being stupid - I've had a couple of chickens try to pull things like this over me. Aren't cats meant to be more intelligent? Because they've never done it.
     

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