Pasty Butt

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by chickens rule123, Mar 25, 2010.

  1. chickens rule123

    chickens rule123 In the Brooder

    Mar 7, 2010
    When our chicks get here i Don't really want to go throught the pasty butt situation is there a way to prevent that [​IMG]
  2. CrazyMomOf2

    CrazyMomOf2 In the Brooder

    Feb 6, 2010
    It sounds worse than it really is! As long as you check them once a day, you'll be fine. If you see any build up, just gently wash it off. Out of 48 chicks, I only had maybe 4 or 5 that really had pasty butt and it only lasted a couple days! From what I've read, it's mostly from the stress of being shipped.

    Good luck with your chicks!
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Supposely it is caused by stress, expecially stress of shipping, but I think it is a little more complicated than that. Otherwise why do some of them get it several days after they arrive?

    I don't know anything that absolutely, always, without a doubt stops it. Some things that might help.

    Have the brooder ready when you get them. Have the temperature stabilized at the right temperature, with is somewhere between 90 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit, but only have one corner of the incubator this temperature. Let the far side of the brooder be a little cooler so they can find their comfort zone. It is a little different for different chicks. They can handle being just a bit cool better than being too hot. Their behavior will tell you if they are too hot or too cold, either crowding under the heat and chirping pitifully or getting as far from the heat source as possible. Make sure you have a good draft guard so they do not get a draft on them, but make sure there is good ventilation.

    Pick them up as soon as you can and get them in the brooder. Just because they can go a few days without eating and drinking doesn't mean it is easy on them.

    Make sure they have liquid and food available, especially the liquid. Teach them how to drink immediately by dipping each and every one's beak in the liquid as you put them in the brooder. I think the food is a little less important that they have it immediately. They will need something solid to help get their system working but the liquid may help stop dehydration. Even grown chickens can't handle going without water for long periods of time. I'm saying liquid instead of water because most hatcheries tell you to add some sugar to their first water to give them an energy boost. There are all kinds of suggestions as to what you can add for this initial burst of extra energy, vitamin packs or whatever. I think watered down hummingbird syrup would be a great choice. It is only for their first water. Afterwards go to straight regular water. Some people suggest ACV. I don't think I'd mix the ACV with sugar or anything sweet in their first water, although I have nothing against it in subsequent water. The hatcheries want your chicks to survive so I would go with their recommendations. Their success depends on your chicks surviving.

    I'd provide grit pretty early on, not the first day but the third. If all they eat is the prepared chick starter or starter/grower, they don't have to have grit, but I think it helps set their system up the way it is supposed to work. You can buy parakeet grit at the pet store if you want. It is the right size for chicks. I took some sand from outside and offered it to them in a small yogurt cup wired to the side of the brooder, starting the third day I had them. I did not offer it to them earlier because I wanted to make sure they knew where their food was and they were eating that. Some of them ate a whole lot of the sand anyway but it did not seem to hurt them.

    I'd suggest keeping them on litter they cannot eat the first two or three days, like paper towels. They will peck and eat anything, not just what you want them to. After they have learned where their food is and you have them on grit, I don't think it matters. Pine shavings, sand, whatever you want to use as bedding and works for you is great, but I' be careful those first couple of days. I know people raise plenty of chicks on pine shavings from day one and don't have problems, but some do have problems. I think it is easier on their systems to not have to handle food they cannot digest or grind up until the system is working the way it should. If Mama Hen were raising the chicks in your back yard, the chicks would be getting grit and bits of everything they saw that was interesting as soon as she took them off the nest, but in your brooder Mama is not there to teach them what to eat and what not to. You are Mama.

    When I got my 28 chicks, I picked them up as soon as possible, dipped their beaks in water as I put them in the brooder that was heated in one area only (I did not add sugar or anything else to the water) and gave them grit the third day I had them. I did not have them on litter they could eat. I had three cases of pasty butt, none after I started the grit. All 28 survived.

    I don't know that any of this will prevent pasty butt, but I think it will help you have healthier chicks.

    Good luck!!!
  4. ChickenMama18

    ChickenMama18 Songster

    Aug 31, 2009
    Nor Cal
    New to this but of our two cihicks one had pasty butt and after we cleaned her it never returned.

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