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Look at this little chicks legs!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Boothschickfarm, Nov 15, 2013.

  1. Boothschickfarm

    Boothschickfarm New Egg

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    Two weeks ago I had eggs hatch and one was born with what I thought was "spraddled" legs. I tried the bandaid method and other various ways to adjust its legs but it won't stand. It is able to get around the brooding box to eat and drink but is not enough to keep up with the rest of its siblings. I want to help the little guy and feel bad seeing him try to get around but just gets stepped on and loses balance rolls around. Please help any suggestions and opinions!

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    The gimpy one next to same age sibling
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  2. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It looks like it has developed sores on it's hocks and it's definitely not keeping up with the other chicks.[​IMG] Sorry but, I would say it would be more humane to put it down.
     
  3. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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    Strange, why does it have such sores? Very rough surface? I've had spraddled chicks from a genetic issue and they never got sores from it. Are you sure it didn't get both knees broken at some point? Sometimes the joints explode outwards, tearing the skin open.

    If it's just spradding, it's treatable. There are different types of spraddling, caused by different things, and as such requiring different treatments.

    If you can get pure stockholm (pine) tar, by all means do, it takes care of sores like this and far worse. I recommend you gently try to ascertain whether both legs are broken. If they are, then culling it would be kindest. If however they're not broken it can be treatable. I've seen ducklings with a similar type of spraddling be treated by being put in a little cup for part of the day, to help them get their legs under them.

    This could also be a broken pelvic bone, in which case the ability to treat is is lessened as that's difficult. Does the chick ever raise itself from its hocks?

    If this is genetic, at least one of the parents of this chick will show incorrect leg scaling. The chick itself would also show incorrect leg scaling. If you can get any good photos of mother/father/chick's legs, front-on, I can tell you if it's genetic. Genetic spraddling is generally compensated for without intervention by the third week or so.

    Best wishes.
     
  4. Boothschickfarm

    Boothschickfarm New Egg

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    The chicks are on shavings, not sure if that would attribute to the sores or not, just the fact that he puts all of his weight on his hocks. He came out ov the egg like that, I guess the legs could have been broken from hatching? Won't be able to get pics of parents for a couple days as they are at a different location. None if the other of the 10 chicks have any issues but one has a curled toe.
     
  5. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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    I don't think it's the shavings but I don't know for sure. They might be a bit too sharp. If he hatched this way it's far more likely to be genetic in origin than not. I've never heard of a chick getting its legs broken at hatching but it's not impossible of course. If you can get front-on pics of his legs which are sharp enough to show the scales on his shinbones, I can tell you if it's genetic.

    Best wishes.
     
  6. Boothschickfarm

    Boothschickfarm New Egg

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    Here's a pic of the legs

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  7. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    It is possible that your chick has a vitamin B2 (riboflavin) deficiency or slipped achilles tendon. Avian encephalomyelitis can also cause sitting on the hocks, but it is infectious and he and the others would be showing other symptoms. I would start your chicks on vitamins in the water right away. Put some Neosporin ointment on the sore spots. Here is a good link on how to deal with leg and foot problems--scroll down to slipped achilles tendon: https://sites.google.com/a/poultrypedia.com/poultrypedia/poultry-podiatry
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
  8. chooks4life

    chooks4life Overrun With Chickens

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    The scaling and shape of the leg bones isn't terrible nor is it great, with an outwards twist to each leg, but it's not as bad as some birds; most birds with that scaling can walk normally. In some cases of genetic spraddling the whole shin bone twists and curves and so do all the muscles and tendons attached, making walking painful. Most adjust.

    Having said that, the outwards twist to the legs in this case doesn't look genetic to me. It could be a double case of slipped achilles tendon, and I think that's what it is. I'd definitely try Eggcessive's advice with the vitamins; that possibility needs addressing and eliminating so we know if it's deficiency or not. It can't hurt.

    Corrective casts or bandaging may also be necessary; however due to where the scabs are in relation to the leg, if it is indeed slipped tendons, recovery may be hampered by the fact that the scabs could be hiding damaged tendons.

    That link to the poultry podiatry site Eggcessive gave you has information on splints and things like that as far as I'm aware. I'd try to heal the open wounds before you try to splint though, but it may be fine to just try to splint over them, with an appropriate protective application of something to stop infection developing and cushion the nerve endings (I'd use pure stockholm tar but most people would use something like Vetirycin (not sure how that's spelt) I'd guess). Too hard to say for sure, have to play it by ear so to speak. Eggcessive probably knows what topical things people use that come from a pharmaceutical company. I use natural alternatives instead but a lot of people are uncomfortable with that or unaware of what's good to use or how to get it.

    If you gently straighten the leg almost all the way, and apply gentle pressure to the outside of the lump, does it move freely? (If those are slipped tendons then they've slipped outwards and would need pushing inwards to sit over the joint, since they're sitting on the outside of it).

    Best wishes.
     
  9. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Last edited: Nov 17, 2013
  10. casportpony

    casportpony Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    I've seen lots of chicks at the feed store like this and I think you need to make it a sling or something so that it's not sitting on it's hocks. Doesn't matter how soft the bedding is, you need to get all pressure off of them and let the sores heal. Do a search for chick slings and chick donuts. As for what caused it, I haven't a clue, but treating for a vitamin deficiency sure won't hurt.

    This site has some good info:
    https://sites.google.com/a/poultrypedia.com/poultrypedia/poultry-podiatry

    -Kathy
     

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