Please Help - hen is sitting & walking on her hocks.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Jrzebra, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. Jrzebra

    Jrzebra Chirping

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    Apr 17, 2018
    I just noticed our 6 month old Leghorn hen is having trouble getting around. She can't seem to stand up straight & looks as if she's in a sitting position, with her lower legs on the ground in front of her, (see picture). Has anyone seen this? Any ideas as to what I can do for her? She can still walk, but has a bad limp & it seems to be painful for her. One leg works a little better than the other. Otherwise, she seems healthy. She is eating & drinking & she still tries to run to the food with the others when I feed. She was getting pushed around & I was afraid the others would start picking on her, so I have separated her. Now she's in a quiet area by herself & she seems comfortable enough. I'm not sure what happened, or what to do for her though, other than "wait & see". Any input would be appreciated. 20190625_161845.jpg
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Crossing the Road

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    There's a chance, albeit small, that this condition affecting your young hen is due to a vitamin deficiency. Try B-complex, a tablet once a day. Also, in case this may be neurological, give her one vitamin E capsule 400iu with a sliver of selenium once a day.

    Pull down on her wattles and that will force open her beak. Pop the pills right inside and let go of the wattles and she'll swallow. Do not dilute by mixing into water or food.
     
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  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

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    Sorry about your hen. I agree that I would give human B complex crushed or grated onto some of her feed daily in case of riboflavin or B2 deficiency. What are you feeding? Was she vaccinated for Mareks disease? If she doesn’t improve after a week or teo of the B complex, I would then suspect Mareks disease, a virus that spreads through dander. It can cause neurological signs, weakness or paralysis of one or both legs or wings, sometimes a twisting of the neck to the side or downward, and tumors of the organs. Occasionally the eyes may be affected.

    Of course, injury could also be a possibility, so make sure that she can reach food and water, and if she is being pecked or bullied, she must be separated. A dog crate with food and water might be a good thing to observe her for a few days. Here is some reading about Mareks:
    https://extension.umd.edu/sites/extension.umd.edu/files/_docs/programs/poultry/FS-1007 Recognizing and Preventing Mareks Disease in Small Flocks.pdf

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/the-great-big-giant-mareks-disease-faq.66077/
     
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  4. AlleysChicks

    AlleysChicks Enabler

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    Noticed this with a silkie pullet today. When she does walk she limps. Mine have been getting rooster booster vitamins in their water since last week.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

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    Sorry about your hen. I agree that I would give human B complex crushed or grated onto some of her feed daily. What are you feeding? Was she vaccinated for Mareks disease? If she doesn’t improve after a week or teo of the B complex, I would then suspect Mareks disease, a virus that spreads through dander. It can cause neurological signs, weakness or paralysis of one or both legs or wings, sometimes a twisting of the neck to the side or downward, and later tumors of the organs.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/the-great-big-giant-mareks-disease-faq.66077/
     
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  6. Jrzebra

    Jrzebra Chirping

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    Apr 17, 2018
    Thank you all very much for the input. She will start a vitamin regimen today. She has been getting Purina Flockraiser, which is a hi protein starter feed, along with scratch grains, kitchen scraps & occasional weeds & boiled eggs for treats. I had just started switching them to layer feed, so she was getting about 50/50 of the layer/flockraiser.
    She is vaccinated for Marecks. I know vaccinated chickens can still get it, but I've seen several cases of Marecks & her thing is different than what I've ever seen. It seemed more like an injury to me, (but not ruling it out). There are 2 roosters in the flock & she is quite small, so I wondered if the roosters may have gotten too agressive with her, or were too heavy for her when they tried to mate her.
    She was living with about 20 others her age- all vaccinated & healthy. None of the others have shown any similar symptoms. And their pen is brand new, in a place we've never kept any birds. She is seperated now in her own 3' x 4' box. She can get around & has free access to food & water. I noticed she lays down to eat & drink, so that makes me think that standing for too long is uncomfortable. Other than that, she seems healthy.
    I was wondering if I should try to tape or splint her knees to give some support, in case she has pulled ligaments or tendons.
    I will give vitamins & watch her carefully for any changes and hope for the best.
     
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