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Our special needs baby, "Daffy" and a question about their oil, we need a lil help please!!!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by kyexotics, Aug 3, 2015.

  1. kyexotics

    kyexotics Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is our "special" child...She is a pure Pekin with 2 crests but born unable to stand, not due to leg issues, some type of balance issue as everything works fine...

    Because everything worked we kept her and tried to work with her and of course, fell in love, how can you not after looking in a Pekin's eyes?...

    She knew we were trying to help her and it has become such a special relationship, one you wish you didn't need to have but one you're so thankful to have once established...

    She lives in a very small cage which doesn't allow her to roll, if it did, she'd be on her back in an instant, she can't help herself...As you can imagine, just her living quarters require daily work, multiple times a day, it's just how it is with special needs we figure...of course we can't let her stay in that cage all day so every day about noon I take her out of her cage and we have some special time on the couch, just snuggling...

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    Then, when we're both ready, and we can tell with just a look :) it's time for the pool!...Since, like a NASCAR race, she can only turn left, we use a small tub so she can hit the wall quickly and not roll over...She used to roll, but has now learned to use the wall, growing has helped that too...

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    Then of course I get to snuggle and hold her as she dries off! .

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    She is sweet beyond words, for some reason we were blessed with her and even though she's a LOT of daily work, what's the alternative? Nothing we can fathom so don't even mention "it"...

    ONE question for ya'll, she cannot spread her oil properly, how can we help her do that????
     
  2. GitaBooks

    GitaBooks Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    That is so wonderful that you are helping her. I wish I could have done that with my paralyzed chick, but I didn't have the time. [​IMG]

    You could try helping her stand by setting her in a "sling" hanging from the roof of her cage, with her legs hanging down.

    I heard somewhere that crested birds are prone to deformities, which is why I am reluctant to buy crested ducks. I was wondering if anyone knew if this was true or not?

    As for the question about the oils, I'm not sure.

    It is wonderful what you are doing. Keep up the good work! [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    Unfortunately the neurological problems are quite common with crested ducks :( The crests are linked to a fatal gene and if a bird gets two copies of it, it dies in the shell. With her two crests, I wonder if perhaps she did get two copies and somehow made it to hatch? Looks like you're taking great care of her though!

    As for the oils, I'm not sure if there's much you can do. You could try to spread it for her, but ducks take literally hours everyday preening to make sure all their feathers are waterproofed and in good order, so I don't think you'd really be able to do them all for her.
     
  4. GitaBooks

    GitaBooks Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    Thank you for answering my question.

    That's too bad. I made it a rule at my place that I wouldn't own animals that had lethal genes in them, so I guess I can't buy any crested ducks. I'm guessing its different genetics then those that make chicken crests but similar to those found in canaries? Canaries have crests linked with lethal genes as well, which is why I assumed ducks did.
     
  5. proud-armywife

    proud-armywife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Amazing!! That duck is lucky to have you... Sweet story made my day
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    It is different. With, say, polish chickens, it's just the feathers that grow in a certain way. With tufted geese, like my roman tufted, it's just a ball of extra skin. With ducks, it's literally a hole in their skull that is then covered over by skin and the crest. This make it super dangerous for any female ducks to be mated, because a drake will hold the crest for balance, and if he pulls too hard...

    Ducklings have died in the shell with their brains growing outside of their skulls thanks to it. I've seen some pretty gruesome eggtopsy pictures. Check out this thread for more info: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/707110/the-truth-behind-crested-ducks#post_9616584
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2015
  7. GitaBooks

    GitaBooks Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    Yikes!

    Thanks for telling me that its different in geese. I always thought it was the same and planned on never buying any tufted geese. It is my opinion, and I mean no offense, that breeds with lethal genes simply shouldn't be bred, even if you can sort of get around them. It just isn't nice to go for looks above health. This is why I'm not going to buy any Japanese Bantams either.

    I'm not saying tufted birds are cute, its just that one of the things I study is unhealthy mutations in domestic animals, and some of them are pretty awful.

    But I won't rant. I do enough of that to my family. [​IMG]
     
  8. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    You are so patient and kind to be looking after that poor duck so well.

    I could not do all that every day for the next 10 years of my life... wow! will you take her with you when you go on holidays, or maybe someone else in your family will take care of her?

    She is very cute!
     
  9. ducky 13

    ducky 13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I am glad you are helping her when probably someone else would have culled her. You can spread her oil by rubbing the oil gland at the base of her tail with your thumb and pointer finger and rub the the feathers. You won't get it perfectly but it should help a bit
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. torilovessmiles

    torilovessmiles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a pekin duck that was almost completely paralyzed due to a dog attack. It took her a month of aquatherapy and a shot of steroids to reduce swelling in her spine, but she is now walking just fine! It took her a month to walk and two more months to walk properly, but we didn't want to give up on her.
    For that month she couldn't walk, she could not spread her oil at all. We did it for her the best we could, but we couldn't spread is as well as a duck can! We had to towel dry her and put her under a heat lamp for a little while to warm up after she swam in the tub. I just can't coat every single little feather like ducks do!

    We had decided that if she didn't recover, we were going to make her a wheel chair so she could get around and play a little bit. If your duckling could manage to scoot the chair without having to hold up her weight, maybe that would be a good idea! This page has some info on them:

    http://www.majesticwaterfowl.org/mmissue62.htm
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2015
    1 person likes this.

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