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Limping, lethargic chicken

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jaybanana, Dec 20, 2012.

  1. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm new to chickens, so please bear with me!

    I have a chicken, no idea of age or breed, who I noticed yesterday was limping and leaning when trying to walk. I isolated her, but there was no improvement by night. I also noticed she was infested with mites (orangey/red colour, also some black around/on her comb). Her legs also looked a bit like she had scaly leg mites, but it's hard for me to tell!

    Today I treated her (and the rest of the flock) with frontline, oil on the legs, and piperazine, although I'm not sure how much she has actually drunk. I also totally cleaned and scrubbed the entire pen.

    Her comb has flopped slightly to one side. She ate some rickets (I got the recipe here http://forum.backyardpoultry.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=7984925&start=0 ), but still hardly moves. She just lays in the one spot. I tried to feel around her vent in case she was egg bound, but I have no idea what I'm actually feeling for! I also checked for bumble foot, but seems fine. Her eyes are fine and alert, breathing seems fine, no noticeable snot or anything. She has had diarrohea (dirty feathers), but I checked the poop guide and it seems normal. None of the other chickens are sick. She hasnt laid in 2 days, but the people who gave us the chickens said they are getting a bit older and not all of them lay everyday anyway.

    Could her symptoms just have been because of the parasites? Or am I'm looking at something more severe? I can't afford vet fees.

    Is there anything else I can do? It's almost midnight now, so it's a bit hard to do much, but I'm so worried I'll wake up tomorrow and she will be dead. :(
     
  2. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    http://instagr.am/p/TdI3cfpqbv/

    http://instagr.am/p/Tdt1o0pqQG/

    Trying to get a photo of Sunshine and another one of my girls legs up, but having trouble from my phone. Hope these work. The first is the sick chicken, the second is one of the otherwise healthy chickens, but her legs look similar to Sunshines.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2012
  3. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Anyone?

    :(
     
  4. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If she was egg bound, would she have died by now? It's been 48 hrs.
     
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Maybe Merek's
     
  6. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    If she were mine I would:

    • Bring inside right away.
    • Weigh and record weight. I use a cheap digital kitchen scale from Target.
    • Do thorough exam.
    • Dust for mites/lice with poultry dust even if I couldn't see any .
    • De-worm with Safeguard for Goats/Cattle (fenbendazole 100mg/ml) at the rate of 50mg/kg ( .5cc/kg) by mouth.
    • Place in box or plastic bin with access to food, water and heat.
    • If not eating and crop is empty, tube feed Pedialyte. Once hydrated, tube feed baby bird food.
    • Watch closely for 24 hours.
    • Weigh daily.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I weighed her, 1.9 kilos. I treated yesterday for fleas/lice/worms. I brought her inside today and gave her a bath, to clean off all the poop from around her vent. I did an exam and heres what I found:

    - The leg she is limping on still has power in it. She can kick with it. The toes on that leg are slightly curled. No obvious signs of injury
    - No other signs of injury elsewhere
    - There was a small lump near the vent. If it is an egg, it is small. It was hard to tell, it could have just been the muscles, or a bone.
    - She flops to the opposite side to her sore leg
    - She did perk up a bit after the bath. First time I've heard her make a noise in the past 24 hrs.

    I syringe fed about 11 mls of fluid into her, after that she started protesting a bit, and I didn't want her to get too worked up. She also ate a small amount of the rickets, quite vigourously. I put her outside in the sun for about 10-15 mins, and she tried standing, and seemed to have improved, but by the time I brought her back inside she was back to being very lethargic. I had to go out, so I've left her in the laundry, with food, water, a towel, and a cat cage with some straw inside it. I'm not sure that there is anything else I can do but wait now.

    Also, it is summer here, and quite warm.

    Here are some photos.

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    [​IMG]
     
  8. jaybanana

    jaybanana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She is no better, but no worse this afternoon. I'm assuming if it was something serious she would have continued to go downhill today. I've still got her inside, and syringed some more fluid into her just now. Will see how she goes in the morning. Her poo is green and yellow, but from what I've read, this could just be due to reduced food intake? And isnt that concerning?

    I spoke to my pastor this afternoon at my parents place, and he said that severe lice/fleas can cause calcium and/or iron deficiency, which can lead to muscles contracting and losing control. So I'm hoping that's it, and that with killing the pests and giving her some extra tlc/good food, she will improve.

    Who knew I would have ever become so attached and worried about one of my chickens! Is it always this bad, or is the first sick chook always more stressful!?
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2012
  9. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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