Need advice on amputating a chick's leg

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by giddyupz, Mar 6, 2015.

  1. giddyupz

    giddyupz New Egg

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    Feb 11, 2015
    I have a 5 week old Rhodebar chick with a twisted leg. I think it was a splayed tendon initially. I attempted to get it back in position by splinting, etc, but I was too late.The leg is now twisted to one side, and the chick drags it behind itself. The leg is not 'dead', just badly twisted and the toes have curled. I can't afford to have a vet do an amputation, so I'd like to try it myself. I have read a few threads on here about amputation, but would like some advice from those of you who have done it. . I'll cull if I have too, but I'd really like to try to save it if I can.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015
  2. Sonya9

    Sonya9 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A lot of leg injuries in chicks can be corrected if they are braced. Cutting a chicks leg off as a class room experiment (with no anesthesia) is just.....well not something I would ever personally do.

    If you seriously intend to do that you had best think of the consequences, if this is done on school grounds students WILL be upset and there will be repercussions when parents and others find out about it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I think I would treat the chick with poultry vitamins, and just let life take it's course. Amputaion should not be done outside of a vet's operating room.
     
  4. giddyupz

    giddyupz New Egg

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    I would NEVER do it in the classroom!
     
  5. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    operating on an animal in a public setting without a veterinary certification is opening the door for an animal cruelty lawsuit.

    Are you planning to do this with no anesthesia? How are you planning to keep the chick from bleeding to death?
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    That's good to know. There was a case last winter where a rooster's foot and lower leg froze, turned black and fell off. He decided to amputate it because he was afraid of the rooster getting gangrene. It was a lot bigger job than he thought it would be. Here is that thread if you want to read it: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...eg-update-leg-has-been-amputated-successfully

    Unfortunately chicken leg bone deformities can be common causing things like twisting outward or inward, and tendon rupture later on. Tibial dyschondroplasia, Varus-Valgus deformity, and twisted tibia. Here are some links to articles to read about these:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1790586/
    http://www.agbiosecurity.ca/healthy...e/Valgus Varus Leg Deformities in Poultry.pdf
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015
  7. giddyupz

    giddyupz New Egg

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    Thank you for the information. Much appreciated.
     
  8. PulletNewbie

    PulletNewbie Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 14, 2014
    I'm so glad to just type in "amputation" and find close to what I need!

    A friend texted me about a 2-month old cockrell she hatched that had a bad, possibly broken and badly healed leg. The little guy was no longer eating, losing feathers and despondent, especially with the rest of the flock chomping on him and, with special attention, his toes.

    Did I want to give him a try at my house before she put him down?

    Of course.

    First, I gave him a flooring of hay instead of wire. Just getting over foot soreness restored his appetite. (Hearing him greet his food bowl with such happy chirps and purrs totally charmed me.)

    Then, mixing him with three Ameracaunas at the same age helped give him what I would anthropomorphically consider a new lease on life.

    He's an adorable pet. Yes. a true pet. Can't dust bathe effectively since his twisted leg and chewed off toenails keep him from scratching. So he loves a warm bath, soft towels and cuddles.

    The problem is I took him to the vet for an x-ray which revealed he has a curved leg bone that will keep him from ever being able to manage his foot, grip a roost branch or other natural rooster activities.

    He spends so much energy trying to balance on this backward-facing/flopping lower leg that I feel he truly would be happier without the burden.

    Anyone have experience with an amputation of a useless lower leg? What was the replacement piece?

    Thanks to all for your compassionate guidance!!
     
  9. giddyupz

    giddyupz New Egg

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    PulletNewbie,

    I had a chick with the same problem. I think it started as a slipped tendon, and the poor thing ended up with a leg much as you described. It got caught on things, and she had very little mobility. I opted to do the amputation myself, rather than euthanize her. It's been about 5 weeks now, and she is doing pretty well. She is able to hop around on the one leg. She's clumsy at times, and rests a lot, but she can get to food and water, and seems much more comfortable. If you would like the details on how to do it, let me know and I'll share with you.

    Wishing you the best,
    Tracy
     
  10. PulletNewbie

    PulletNewbie Out Of The Brooder

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    Good morning Tracy and thanks for the encouragement.
    I am too, uh, chicken, to amputate myself. Have a great vet that I think would handle things nicely.
    Did your little hen receive any kind of attachment to extend the stump to the ground to match the good leg?
    Is such a thing possible?

    Thanks again,
    Carey
     

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