My 3 week old baby chick suddenly started stumbling about today and seems sick.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by SuburbChickens, Jun 6, 2016.

  1. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    My 3 week old Wyondotte baby chick suddenly started stumbling around today early this morning off and on throughout the day and was acting extreemly sleepy at times and sick. But if she drank at bit, she would perk up and get enough energy to run and flap her wings around a bit with her sister chick for a short time but would quickly wear out and want to sleep some more. Now that it's evening, she is does not want to walk much or open her eyes and has a difficult time walking around. She is off balance and has to use her wings to help balance her self as she tips to each side. Also she moves her neck in strange jerking motions some times. She chirps at me and quiets when I talk to her, but hardly looks at me. She just sits in my hand with her head down when I hold her, but seems content to be held. I have to help her get to the water bowl to drink, and she doesn't seem interested in eating. She is acting like she is quickly going down hill - all in one day - and I'm worried she's not going to make it past tonight. I don't know what's wrong or what to do for her. She has had pasty butt a couple of times, but was doing great this past week and a half and seemed normal yesterday..maybe a little bit tired last night though. Has anyone else experienced this? Is there anything that I can do for her? I really don't want her to suffer and the kids and I don't want to loose her but not sure what to do. :(
     
  2. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    This is our first experience with chickens at our home, but don't feel like we're doing a great job even though we're trying very hard to do all the right things. We have worked hard to keep everything clean and give the chicks the proper nutrients that they need on a daily basis, and the chicks have seemed bonded to us and respond lovingly with cute chirps when we talk to them and run to edge of their tiny coop to see us. We'll be sad to loose our chick, Willow, if she does pass.
     
  3. MMorganE

    MMorganE Out Of The Brooder

    106
    3
    43
    Apr 20, 2016
    Austin, TX
    From my experience; Bringing baby chicks inside to a nice quiet environment can do wonders. My baby couldnt walk, as she clearly hurt her leg. The other three with injured legs were never brought inside and eventually passed away. I decided to bring Lily inside. I fed her chicken for protein and kept seed/scratch available to her. When they are suffering or in pain, they typically will not eat or drink. But again, bringing them inside and letting them be alone in a calm, quiet environment can do wonders. Unfortunately your baby sounds like it could be neurological. But i am no chicken expert. Consult a vet- in the meantime, try and keep her stress to a minimum. I have also found out with my flock(s) that my adults and even baby (typically roosters) WILL badly injure or kill chickens with "problems/defects." I have had this happen to my 1 month old. Even though she was from the same batch of babies as them. I am so happy I brought Lily inside or I can for sure say, without a doubt, they would have picked and pecked on her. Keep us posted on what happens and what you decide to do!
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. MMorganE

    MMorganE Out Of The Brooder

    106
    3
    43
    Apr 20, 2016
    Austin, TX
    How is baby doing today?
     
  5. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    Thankfully our baby chick, Willow, is still hanging on. She seems to be doing better, and I believe her strong attachment to her sister chick that is in the small coop with her is keeping her going. She works hard to hold on to life it seems. She has had moments when we thought she was going to pass - that she was in some of her last moments - and then she would hear Nugget, her sister, and would suddenly have new spark and strength to keep trying. She does seem stronger now, but has some things wrong with her that are concerning still. Willow has developed a strange spasm in her neck that causes her to suddenly throw her neck backwrds, which sometimes knocks her off balance. Her legs and feet seem frail or weak also, and we are afraid they may be deteriorating. I'm not sure if she may have a neural disorder or what might be wrong, but other than those issues, she seems content to chase after her sister and loves it when we come over to the coop to say hello. We are keeping the two chicks inside with a heat lamp hung overhead (our air conditioning is set at 79 & we don't want them to get cold indoors), because it has been well over 100 degrees (with a few at 117!) outside during the day for the past week or so. Both chicks love to be taken outside for yard time though, and we keep them in the shade with a fan gently blowing on them and our 6 month old hen. The chicks are flapping their wings more and more, and both are beginning to get their feathers - Willow already has fully feathered wings and her tail feathers. Her wings seem very big for her body, and she has been uncoordinated with them compared to Nugget who has small wings that are not so developed (we were told they are from the same eggs hatched but maybe Willow was one of the first to hatch..maybe?). Willow continues to try and keep up with Nugget and runs to her if Nugget gets very far away. She still tires out quickly and wants to sit or lay down or be held - she actually comes over to where we are sitting and tries to climb or hop up into our hand. We aren't holding her too much though, even though it's very cute that she wants to cuddle, because she immediately starts to go to sleep and seems a bit on the lazy side compared to her adventurous & energetic sister. We keep encouraging leg and wing exercise as much as possible so that she can get stronger. Someone suggested feeding her chicken to strengthen her system..has anyone tried that? I assume canned chicken would definitely be out of the question because of all of the preservatives etc in it? Do you cook chicken breast and mash or grind it up? I appreciate all of the feedback and help!
     
  6. MMorganE

    MMorganE Out Of The Brooder

    106
    3
    43
    Apr 20, 2016
    Austin, TX
    I boil chicken from the grocery store. Boiled chicken and ground up turkey is high in protein. I fed those to Lily and she gained strength within hours of eating it. Also, i would take the (cooled off) water that I boiled the chicken in...which at that point is chicken broth...and put it in her water container. So when she drinks she is still getting the protein from the chicken. My lily is SO tiny...It's hard for her to get chunks of stuff down. So i take fresh corn kernels and mash them for her. Also, boil an egg. Mash the entire egg to edible size..including the shell! This is VERY high in protein and vitamins. The boiled egg/shell is so good for them. I swear by a high protein diet. Im tellin ya, Lily's leg only started healing after I started her on boiled chicken and boiled egg/shell and corn kernels. She still has a limp, but she manages to get around very well now. She has a sister named Penguin, they are inseparable. During the day I take them outside and supervise their yard time. At night they sleep inside. Best of luck to you. OH! Also, I give Lily about HALF a tablespoon of canned cat food once a day. As long as the first ingredient is meat, they will be fine. It is not only great for hydration (as it is full of water) but nutritious in moderation. Oh yes. Pedialyte and gatorade is good for them too. Again, in moderation. Try these things out. You will notice a huge difference in her strength and energy!! Best of luck and please keep me posted. Let me know how their new protein menu works out.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2016
  7. MMorganE

    MMorganE Out Of The Brooder

    106
    3
    43
    Apr 20, 2016
    Austin, TX
    You should post pictures of baby Willow :)
     
  8. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Nugget on the left and Willow behind her on the right. Willow in front on the right stretching her wings and Nugget on the left.
     
  9. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    Willow has made a remarkable come back and both of our baby chicks have suddenly had a big growth spurt. They already look bigger than these pictures above that I took of them just last week. So glad that they are both doing well and are both very active now. It's fun to watch them trying out their wings and scratching at the ground like our 6 month old hen. :)
     
  10. SuburbChickens

    SuburbChickens Out Of The Brooder

    46
    2
    31
    Jun 1, 2016
    [​IMG]Pictures from today. They've had a big growth spurt since last week. And Nugget (the one with a cream chest & smaller wings) has really become Willow's (has larger wings & is more gray) protector. They even nuzzle each other & come up to one another to give a gentle peck beak to beak as if giving a quick kiss..it's very sweet.
    [​IMG][/IMG][/IMG][/IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2016
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by