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Meriks Disease

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by morelcabin, Jan 15, 2009.

  1. morelcabin

    morelcabin Songster

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    If chicks have been vaccinated for meriks can it still show up 8 months down the road? I have a rooster with what I thought was a sprained foot, he's been limping for about two or three weeks now. He was fine besides the limp but since the really extreme cold hit he has become extremely quiet. I am just wondering if this could be meriks?
  2. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing Premium Member

    I think they would have to be exposed to it before getting the vaccine but I'm not 100% sure.
    Could there be another reason for the limp? A sprained or strained joint/bone? Maybe he stepped on something?
    With Marek's, he would appear "paralyzed". You would see him fall over on his side and not be able to get up, his wings would droop, his legs would buckle under his weight. That is what my experience is (and unfortunately, I have experience [​IMG] ).
  3. Chicken Woman

    Chicken Woman Incredible Egg

    Oct 16, 2008
    Have you looked to see if he has a sore or swelling on bottom of foot ?
  4. morelcabin

    morelcabin Songster

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    How long would this process take from the beginning of the limp? I got him back in May as a day old from a hatchery that I have ordered from for years. He started limping 2 or 3 weeks ago
    It could very well be an injury and then with the severe cold here he just seems to be shutting down. He does still get up and hobble away when I go in the pen. I brought him in the house for the night to try and warm him up. It's 40 below out there right now, and being injured doesn't help.
  5. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing Premium Member

    Is he sore or swollen? Have you tried running your fingers down both legs to see if there is a difference between the hurt leg and the normal leg? Does he jerk his leg away from you when you touch it?
    When you say "shutting down", what exactly do you mean? Give us a list of signs and symptoms so we can help you out better.
  6. morelcabin

    morelcabin Songster

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Quote:A few nights ago I brought him in and washed his feet off to see if there was anything and there was nothing. His foot/leg is very slightly swollen
  7. morelcabin

    morelcabin Songster

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Ob boy, I just went had had a closer look to see what's going on with him, he's a little warmer now and talking to me again BUT his toes are curled up, doesn't seem to be able to feel them, he will try and "flip" them out to get a better stance but they curl back soon after....and his wing on the same side as that foot is slightly drooping.
  8. featherhead

    featherhead Songster

    Feb 1, 2008
    Kentucky, USA
    I had one experience with Merrick's a few years ago. The roo had been vaccinated as a youngster, but gradually became unsteady on his feet. He would fall over on his side and be unable to get up, although he was mentally aware of everything going on. At first, I would set him upright and he'd be fine for a while, but then he'd fall over again. His toes were also curled. As the periods of inactivity grew longer over 3 months, the poor roo was spending nearly 50% of his time collapsed. His hens rallied and brought food to him. (He was quite the gentleman.) At that point, I had to euthanize him. There was a vet who wanted to treat my bird, but everything I've read about this disease says there's no treatment and no cure. Although the vet is an avian specialist, I declined treatment. No sense in making the bird suffer more.
  9. Poultriary

    Poultriary Chirping

    Sep 1, 2010
    I've been reading up because I bought some bantam Buckeyes from a local exhibitor and have lost 5 of the 6 birds to what he has indicated was a breakout of Marek's that occured after he sold us the chicks.

    Simply put, no vaccine is 100% effective. This is a quote from a Purdue University animal pathology newsletter: "Vaccines are extremely effective (90%+) in the prevention of Marek's disease."

    Source: http://www.addl.purdue.edu/newsletters/2005/spring/mareks.htm

    , a vaccine is considered extremely effective if greater than 90% of the inoculated animals develop resistance. That can still leave you with one in ten of your animals being susceptible. However, vaccination still reduces the chances that birds that don’t develop resistance will contract the disease because the other birds won’t get it and expose the non-resistant ones to it.

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