Please help diagnose this pullet- limp/weakness/lame in both legs

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by suburbanminifarm, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. suburbanminifarm

    suburbanminifarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2009
    N.San Diego County
    Hi, My friend's pullet has some odd sort of lameness problem developing, and we are concerned because it is getting worse, not better. There is no injury, although at first we thought one of the other animals hurt her. If it were a simple injury I think it would have resolved itself by now, she developed a limp about 3 weeks ago and now that I watch her it seems to be a weakness on both legs. She is now having trouble walking normally and can't jump up on anything like she used to. The other chickens (4 BR 2 EE pullets) shun and abuse her. [​IMG] She lives with many other animals but is free to range as she pleases on the property during the day.
    Like I said this is not my chicken, she lives on my good friend's small horse ranch. I am helping by posting this for her. This pullet is very special to my friend's 12 year old DD.

    1) What type of bird , age and weight. Unknown, found on a horse trail about 3 months ago, appeared full grown at the time, looks like a game cross pullet. Has not laid an egg yet.
    2) What is the behavior, exactly. first limp in one leg, now weakness/ unsteady, even crossed and tripping gait apparently in both legs. NO other symptoms at all and no injury visible.
    3) How long has the bird been exhibiting symptoms? about 3 weeks. Seems to be worsening.
    4) Is there any bleeding, injury, broken bones or other sign of trauma. absolutely none
    5) What happened, if anything that you know of, that may have caused the situation. exposed to many other animals-pigs horses goats bunnies and 6 other chickens so....anything is possible but no injury palpated or visualized.
    6) What has the bird been eating and drinking, if at all. eats well. Lay mash. Lately been harder for her to forage.
    7) How does the poop look? Normal? Bloody? Runny? etc. normal
    8) What has been the treatment you have administered so far? none
    9 ) What is your intent as far as treatment? For example, do you want to treat completely yourself, or do you need help in stabilizing the bird til you can get to a vet? want to find suggestions for how we can treat her ourselves.
    10) If you have a picture of the wound or condition, please post it. It may help. video below.
    11) Describe the housing/bedding in use. She is in a pipe corral with a small shed for nighttime. She is housed with a pig, 3 goats, bunnies, and 6 other chickens. The chickens are allowed to hop out of their pipe corral and forage around the horse ranch during the day. She can't do this lately so has to be carried out.

    I had to post video, since she looks totally fine in pictures.
    Sorry the videos are poor quality, I hope you can see what the problem is! I apperciate your insight and expertise -- we are stumped!
    Video of the pullet walking:

    Video of the pullet showing her legs look normal:

    Video of the pullet walking again:
  2. First off you did a GREAT job of presenting this to the forum. You DO indeed have a wild game hen and really there is no telling where she may have come from.....

    You should ISOLATE this bird from the rest of the flock and keep her quiet, warm and well feed. I would try to give her vitamins at this point. Poly vi sol children vits with out IRON are pretty cheap and a few drops a day would not hurt.

    Many on her will say the bird show signs of "Mareks" disease and I will disagree in advance.

    She may be weak from not having the correct food and therefor lack of proper care.

    Feed her Yogurt and poultry grain, LOTS of fresh clean water and finally game bird feed as she gets used to eating rich foods.

    I think she is pretty active, just needs a bit of TLC and you may find your self with a nice hen. Game hens are wonderful birds, but they really are not the greatest for eggs. They can be great moms and may surprise you with a bunch of babies in the spring.

    Good Luck
  3. purpletree23

    purpletree23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 15, 2009
    Guinea Goonie is right on the money. The only thing I would add is to get some Poly Vi Sol liquid baby vitamins (without added iron) and give her 3 drops in the morning and three drops at night for at least 2 weeks. Leg problems are often from a vitamin deficiency. Apply the drops to the top/side of her beak so the liquid will 'roll' into her beak and she can swallow it and not inhale it.

    Offer her some fresh greens like kale or spinach from the grocery store. I know it's pricey but i was wondering what she could be missing from her wild diet.

    Very best luck with her. Keep us posted![​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2010
  4. suburbanminifarm

    suburbanminifarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2009
    N.San Diego County
    Thanks for your responses!! So a vitamin deficiency huh... strange that her diet when she was wild was complete?!? I am always amazed at the knowledge here... I just knew you guys would know how to help "El Pico". Her owner has been given the link here and will do what she needs to get better. Any other ideas welcome too... Thank You! [​IMG]
  5. suburbanminifarm

    suburbanminifarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 29, 2009
    N.San Diego County
    "El Pico" is getting worse. BUT the owner did not have any vitamins, she has been supplementing the diet only. I'm bringing her over some vitamins today. We'll see...

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