new to raising chicks could use some advice !

notsorandom

Chirping
Mar 5, 2018
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33
66
so i just got 3 baby chicks,they seem healthy though one has poop stuck to her bottom and i tried to clean it up but its pretty stuck on i did manage to get some off but I'm so scared of hurting her also i have read that yogurt can help but all i have is flavored tillamook brand so not sure if they can have flavored at this age they are 5 days old give or take one looks a bit bigger..any pointers would be great what..what they can and cannot eat ..also they seem to only drink water if its from my hand I've tried to lure them to the water dish and how much do they need to eat..they peck at it but i haven't really had to refill the plate yet
 

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Birdinhand

Crowing
May 23, 2016
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Pacific Northwest
you definitely need some chick starter, I start by putting some on the ground where they are standing, then on a plate and within a few days, I use a small chick feeder. for the pasty but, I'd take some warm water in a dish and dip it's but in and let it soak for a bit, holding the chick still. every couple of minutes try working the dropping loose, clean it all off so there is none left to start another ball, then dry off their rump and get them back under the heating lamp. if they get really wet, then maybe use a hair dryer to dry them off.
 

happyhens1972

Songster
6 Years
Jul 24, 2013
1,070
1,131
246
Worcester, UK
The poop definitely needs cleaning off. If it is left in place and blocks the vent, it will kill your baby very quickly. Also, while there is poop stuck, even if it isn't currently blocking the vent, it will prevent further poop from leaving her vent properly and it will build up and block the vent that way. You can soak her bottom in warm water and gently remove the poop with a Q tip or wash cloth, then make sure she is dried thoroughly, with a hairdryer if necessary, or she will chill.

This problem is called pasty butt and is often caused by the chicks being too warm or too cold. Do your chicks huddle under their heat source and chirp a lot or do they keep well away from it? This would indicate too cold and too warm, respectively. If they happily move in and out of the heat and do no chirp loudly, in a distressed fashion, they are fine.

Food.....ideally they should be being fed on chick crumb. Some finely chopped scrambled or boiled egg will help with the pasty butt and give them a good nutritional boost too. I wouldn't give them flavoured yoghurt....it should be natural, unflavoured, ideally live yoghurt. Apple Cider Vinegar with the mother will help clear that pasty butt right up and keep it from happening again.

I see they are on shavings, so put the chick crumb onto some kitchen towel for now, sprinkle it around and then tap at it with your fingers to imitate a hen showing them how to peck. They'll catch on pretty soon. Also, dip the very end of their beak in the water so they realise what it is. If it is 'open' water, you should fill it full of pebbles so that they can drink from between the pebbles but not fall in and either get soaked or drown. I find that sometimes sprinkling some food into the water helps them to peck at it too but as soon as they have pecked at it and worked out how to drink, you'll need to clean the water out again immediately so as to not leave the crumb in there to spoil.

I realise I have cross posted with @Birdinhand here but rather than edit, I'll let you take what you want from this info....and welcome to BYC!!! xx
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Mar 9, 2014
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Northern Colorado
What kind of water dish are you using?

For the first 2 weeks I keep mine on paper towels so I can sprinkle the chick starter on them. Much easier for them to find it that way.

I agree with birdinhands method for cleaning her bum.
It is important to get her cleaned off so that she can poo and not be blocked.

I don't give any treats until they are well over a month old. They will need chick grit when you do introduce treats.

Remember treats are just that....a treat. Keep the amount very small to avoid creating an unbalanced diet.
 

pennyJo1960

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Dec 29, 2015
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so i just got 3 baby chicks,they seem healthy though one has poop stuck to her bottom and i tried to clean it up but its pretty stuck on i did manage to get some off but I'm so scared of hurting her also i have read that yogurt can help but all i have is flavored tillamook brand so not sure if they can have flavored at this age they are 5 days old give or take one looks a bit bigger..any pointers would be great what..what they can and cannot eat ..also they seem to only drink water if its from my hand I've tried to lure them to the water dish and how much do they need to eat..they peck at it but i haven't really had to refill the plate yet

You have been told many things I will say Welcome to Backyard Chickens... yes you need plain yogurt , yes clean the butt, dip little beaks in the water... tap food......
 

notsorandom

Chirping
Mar 5, 2018
84
33
66
they have chick starter food i feed them on a plastic plate and they have a shallow drinking dish,i am going to get them another light hopefully today they huddle but they dont sound distressed but im assuming they are chilly im in ca it isnt horribly cold but still not warm enough ..would probiotics be a good purchase?
 

notsorandom

Chirping
Mar 5, 2018
84
33
66
i went and got them a 150 watt infrared light it seems almost too hot though should i worry that it could over heat them?
 

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