Please Help! New Duckling Owners...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by thesmiths, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. thesmiths

    thesmiths Out Of The Brooder

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    Four days ago my husband rescued a duckling from the feed shop he works at. It was the only duckling that wasn't like the others (crested and not walking) and so they asked my husband to take it outside and kill it. He told them no and said he would take it home and we would take care of it. So here we are!

    We are unsure of the gender, but we've been calling it a 'she' for now until we find out for sure. Her name is Ducky and she is a super sweet! She has very strong legs, but can't seem to keep her neck/head straight long enough to walk or stand. She swings her head to the left or right and just falls over. She has taught herself to get around by sliding on her side until she reaches something that she can prop herself up on, stand up, flop over, and start the process over again. She is fully capable of getting to her food and water, which was a big concern for us, so we're thankful for that. She started getting depressed after being separated for a day, so we went the next day and got her a buddy (unsure of gender). We call 'him' Scuba because he loves to dive underwater! They are both rouen/mallard ducklings, from the same mama. They like to cuddle together which just melts our hearts!

    We made a brooding box with a plastic tub, heat lamp, pine shavings, old towel, and a stuffed animal. We feed them un-medicated started feed in a shallow mason jar lid. We read online that ducklings have a niacin deficiency, so we give them water that takes care of that (100mg niacin per gallon water) and they've been on that for 3 days now. That is the only supplement they are on. Scuba is very healthy and doing well, but Ducky is still unable to walk upright. Her legs are not splayed at all, she just can't seem to hold her head still and keep her balance. If I can post a video I will be sure to show everyone what she looks like. They're both good swimmers! Ducky constantly moves and doesn't have any trouble keeping her bill above water, which is good. She tends to swim straight and then in circles until she finds a wall to lean on. We are afraid that Ducky will never be able to walk properly and that she may have some sort of neurological damage from hatching or being crested...does anyone have any experience with this type of thing? We have never had ducks before, but we are doing our best to give them the best life they can possibly have.

    ANY advice or help would be greatly appreciated! We can't seem to find anyone online that has described the same issues that we are having with our little Ducky...
     
  2. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    I would get some Polyvisol WITHOUT IRON, it's baby vitamins you can get it at walmart or any store. Give about two or three drops in the mouth each day, then give him some Vitamin E the entire amount NOT the shell.. he or she may not like it. then put 1 Tablet of Vitamin b complete in his water. As he improves decrease the doses of each amount each week.

    So one week three shots of the Polyvisol each day. the next week 2 shots etc. etc do the same with the Vitamin E.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
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  3. thesmiths

    thesmiths Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for those suggestions. We will go get some of the Polyvisol tomorrow at the store. We have read that ducklings can overdose on Vit E, so is it ok to give her the enitre contents of the capsule? Do you know when we will start seeing improvement? We are trying to track her progress. :)

    Here's a video of her swimming and walking...[​IMG][​IMG]
     
  4. jtbrown

    jtbrown Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It has been a while since we had ducklings. Make sure the niacin you dissolve is immediate release, not the 'flush' free version that most people who take niacin prefer. Good luck. I ended up with 6 white leghorn pullers that were going to be killed from the feed store last year because they had picked each other bloody and weren't sales worthy. Free chicks and they are laying machines that don't eat much. I hope she and scuba do well.
     
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Lacrystol has given you some of the best advice I have seen on the forum for what is most likely the problem. Blessings to you all.
     
  6. Finny

    Finny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Crested ducklings are prone to neurological problems. I have seen an increase of people on BYC having problems with these poor crested ducklings :(. I actually had a crested duckling (she is now living at my aunts house) and she could not hold her head straight or walk properly. I started her on vitamins, but I think I waited too long to do so :(. I am afraid she will have to live with this problem for the rest of her life. I am glad you are starting Ducky on the vitamins early :). Good luck!
     
  7. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    Honestly it doesn't look like a Head or neck issue looks more like a leg issues, I think the Vitamin B complete will help immensely. It will take a while but it should help.
     
  8. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    I would also suggest to get him off that PINE, it's to slippery for the problem his having right now. get him on a wired bottom, this will help get his grip and gain some leg control..
     
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Lacrystol, would a towel over the wire be easier on his feet?

    Or, perhaps some of that no-skid mesh?
     
  10. Lacrystol

    Lacrystol Hatching Helper

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    Towel is OK, wire is best and the reason why is because they can put there little tiny toe nails in the holes and pull himself up, to get some control... The towel you will have to watch to make sure his toe nails don't get snagged on it.. He's got little weak legs right now..
     

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