Please help sick chick--panicking


11 Years
Oct 6, 2008
I had two chicks hatch a couple of days early, I think my temps were too high.

One's yolk sac didn't seem all the way absorbed, it had a small yellow bulge. It was looking good and the bulge appeared to be drying up. It was born on Saturday and looked great yesterday.

Now it's sac thing looks crusty, it's butt was pasty and it is very lethargic and holding its leg weird. I cleaned off it's butt after reading about pasty butt here and applied ointment. I'll also get some hardboiled egg/pedialyte when I run out in a few minutes.

What else can I do?? I'll be heartbroken if it's not okay. I'm attached
Of course your attached. From my own personal experience, and I have read where others proved me wrong, and lets hope your chick will prove me wrong too.
I had some hatch like this and they all died. The yolk sack dried up and it was a painful death. It was so sad.
I felt it was a bacteria in my incubator and I broke it up and threw it away because I did not want to chance it again.
Try the pedialyte(sp) to see if it helps. If you have another one hatch like that, I wonder if put an ointment over the egg sack to prevent it from dehydrating if it would absorb it.
Just a thought. You hang in there and I hope for the best for you. :aww
Hello! I have had a couple chicks hatch without the yolk being completely absorbed and have had some survive. I learned to add humidity to my brooder pen. I put a nice warm washcloth square(cut up piece of washcloth as a whole one is too big) in under the heat lamp and placed the chick with the unabsorbed yolk on it. The moisture helps the chick to finish absorbing the yolk. Yes, I would also cook up some egg and after it has cooled, place a little on a flat dish. If she doesn't eat it, I have carefully opened their beak and pu a little bit in their mouth to let them get a taste for it. Also if she has trouble swallowing it, have a q-tip handy to help gently push it down out of the airway. I have done this several time with weak chicks and had success. Pedialyte is also great! If it doesn't make it, you did everything you could to help it--remember that!
We all get attached to those little ones!
You need to keep that yolk sac moist. If it gets dried up thats bad.

Last year I had to help a call duck out of its shell. Well, it had a huge yolk sac attatched. So I laid its lower half in a small plastic bag to keep the sac moist. It was in the incubator for 3 days. I kept giving it vitamins and electrolytes and it lived.
I have never had this happen, but I bet if you could keep the yolk sac moist it will be fine. How about putting the bottom half in a plastic bag as mentioned above and adding a moist cotton ball to the bag for moisture, and keeping it very warm. You will have to monitor the temp constantly since the chick won't be able to move away from the heat on its own.
There are others that have dealt with this....maybe they will be along soon...
Darn, keeping the yolk sac moist makes sense now.
I thought it was good that it was drying up.

Unfortunately, she died, right after I got some yolk and vitamins in her. I know I tried but I feel like a failure as a stand-in mother hen--this is my third try incubating--first two I got ZIP and this time out of 10, 4 pipped, 2 died in the shell, 2 hatched and 1 died. So now I have a very sad only chicken child that seemed to enjoy her friend's company and seems a little out of sorts now.

What the heck will I do with one chicken? Watch it be a rooster too. As much as I want to love it, so far this whole experience has just been one sadness after the next for me.

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