My chick has a scissor beak starting!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Amethyste, Aug 30, 2009.

  1. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    What do I do? Or...can I do anything [​IMG]

    I just noticed it a few days wasnt obvious at all till this week.

    We tried to get pics of her little face and beak so you could see it going to get worse? What can we do? She is a sweet little thing, but if it is going to just get worse and cause her issues I would rather not put her thru that if it looks like it will be bad.

    She is a 6 week old EE chick, presumably female. Eating medicated Chick Start and Grow and anything else she can eat. She seems to be same size as the rest of her sisters, and seems to be eating ok atm. Water is good...she is drinking. Activity level: good... running everywhere, and she squawked like a bloody banshee when we took her from Esther so we could get pics inside.

    I have never dealt with this before....and am a bit worried for this little one. I know its a genetic thing, and we dont plan to breed our birds at this time, so she is going to be a celibate hen.

    Any info you can give me at all would be great!!

    Thank you!

    PS please excuse the kitchen its not usually that bad [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  2. Elite Silkies

    Elite Silkies Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 17, 2009
    My Coop
    I was told that sometimes you can correct them some, with trimming, but I do not know how.

    PM threehorses, she is so smart and usually has an answer.
  3. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    Chances are it will get worse. Some birds with scissor beaks do completely fine, others have significant problems. Feed in a deep dish, separately so that she gets sufficient and doesnt have to fight for it. If that is not enough, get handfeeding formula and mix to mashed potato consistency--she should be able to eat that on her own.

    Keep the beak trimmed as closely as possible. You may want to talk to a vet about any treatments they can recommend.
  4. threehorses

    threehorses Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2009
    I agree - I think I would start with the top beak, which appears to have a noticeable downward bend and its tip is a bit long (which on a normal beak shouldn't matter, but with the bend it seems to interfere).

    You want to keep it trimmed back - using one of those little rotating nail files like they have now for pets, so that the beak doesn't splinter, there at the clear section. Be conservative on the bottom beak, less so on the top. Using the little nail 'dremel' for lack of a better word will likely also help if you get the beak too far, but buying a bottle of Clotisol (as it can be safely used on beak bleeders, unlike styptic) will help if you do it too far.

    You'll want to maintain it that way so that the beak's different top downwards bend doesn't keep interfering with the beak alignment, causing the actual jaw/skull to set in (crooked) place.
    As far as I'm aware, Clotisol is only available online. BUt as it's what the avian vets use, mine did for beak injuries, and it's safe it's worth the money. It's water soluable - like a 'paint' and it really does instantly stop bleeding. The small bottle will last you ages.
  5. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    Thank you all so much for the info!!

    Guess we wil be giving her beak-acures [​IMG]

    I assume then that the beaks are like the kitty claws? When I clip them, I only clip the clear part and not into the pink. Same idea here then correct? Instead of clipping tho I will have hubby dremel it.
  6. Mrs.Puff

    Mrs.Puff Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2008
    Southern Iowa
    It will probably get worse. I've got one who has a bad beak. I have to feed him/her a moistened mash, away from the other birds. It cannot get feed in any other way. Unless you plan on at least twice daily individual care, you might consider culling.
  7. Amethyste

    Amethyste For Love of Boo...

    Well, my hubby is very attached to this little bird. He wanted to try and see if we could help her before we let her go to the summerlands.

    We will try what has been said here, and if it looks like it is getting worse, we will sadly do the right thing.

    I dont want her to suffer in anyway, and she seems to be in wonderful health and energy atm. We at least wanted to give her a chance and see...if its not meant to be its not meant to be....

    We will know soon enough tho I guess.
  8. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    it will help tremendously if you have something abrasive available both in the coop and run- a granite rock, a cinder block, patio block, brick...all birds need these to rub their beaks and nails, even those with perfect beaks! Good luck with this one and please let us know how she is managing.[​IMG]

    You can trim the beak, too, but I haven't had any experience to guide you on this...
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2009
  9. WingingIt

    WingingIt Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    I have an EE with a cross-beak. If you search my posts and find the one where I was asking about the sex of an almost 16 week EE - that's her and you can see how bad hers is/was before I trimmed it that day.

    You're correct that you use a flashlight or something to make sure that you don't trim too far and make it bleed. I'll tell you, the first time I trimmed I did the TEENIEST piece (she was little like yours) and she bled for 30 minutes. I then went to a regular manual nail file until she got much bigger.

    I put the feed for her in a deep heavy dish (so it won't turn over) and she's doing just fine. Thanks to the extra handling she gets for trimmings and treats and just checking on her to make sure there's no dirt stuck in her beak or anything she's VERY gentle and usually flies up on my shoulder when I walk in.

    She's also the top of the pecking order in the pen she's in. [​IMG]

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