Newly hatched chick can't walk, has eye injury


8 Years
Mar 3, 2012
On July 22nd, I went out to feed my chickens and found a new chick. Its feathers were dry but I believe it hatched that same day, as it still has its egg tooth even now. It's the only young chick in the flock. The rest of my flock consists of two grown hens, a grown rooster, and three two-month-old chicks, two pullets and a cockerel. Those three young birds, as well as this newborn chick, belong to my rooster and one of the hens, buuuut... The rooster is the son of the fully-grown hen that he's having babies with (a mother/son pairing). I usually pick up the eggs so they don't hatch but the first three came from when I was out of town for a couple weeks and I had no idea the hens were incubating this new chick's egg; I never saw them sitting on anything when I checked them daily.

Anyways, the baby chick had to be seprated from the flock and brought inside. I've always let the hens sit on and hatch their own eggs and raise the chicks by themselves and they've always done great at it, but for some reason, the entire flock started attacking this little chick. They won't let it eat, and one of them even pecked it in its eye, which is now cut and swollen shut. And for some reason, the chick can't stand. It's kind of sitting on its legs and butt and when I stand it up on its legs, it falls back down. I don't think it's splayed legs because they don't go out to the side. The chick falls back on its butt.

I brought the chick inside and it's in a warm room, in a carrier with a towel, some food, and water. I haven't seen it eat or drink yet since it hatched.

Two questions:

One, is there anything I can do to help this chick survive or is it not likely gonna make it? Anything I can do to help it learn to walk, eat, and drink?
Two, do you think its legs are messed up because it's a little inbred? The three older chicks are also inbred but they all appear to be completely fine.

Thanks for your time!


Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
I can't answer very many of your questions, but was the chick with the hen who hatched it? Do you think she would care for it if you separated the two of them? I would immediately start the chick on some Poultry Cell 1 ml orally daily, or put some powder chick vitamins into it's water, which can sometimes help with leg problems. Put some plain bacitracin or neosporin in it's eye twice a day. If you keep it by itself, it will need a heat lamp or heat source.

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