Plymouth Rock teenager was limping now now struggles to walk. Help!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by hethbear, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

    Hi,

    I am new to having chickens. Almost 2 weeks ago I went to a chicken breeder who specialises in "show chickens" as We wanted a "layer" and then some pets. I was recomended this breeder by a friend. I purchased one each of the following:

    Light Sussex
    Silver Laced Wyandotte
    Silky Bantum
    Plymouth Rock

    I purchased "teen-ages" which I presume are about 8 -12 weeks old? I let the breeder know which breeds I wanted but didn't pick the actual birds myself. When I got them home I noticed that the Plymouth Rock was missing most it's feathers on it's back and had large cuts (I presume from pecking). We kept an eye on them as they settled in and they didn't seem to be pecking each other and the Plymouth cuts seemed to be healing.

    About 4 days ago we noticed the Plymouth Rock (named Scarlet) limping and not able to put weight on one of her feet. We waited a day and she seemed to get worse choosing not to stand or leave the coop. Scarlet also had very runny smelly poo & this was all over her rear end. We took her to the vet. The vet was not a bird specialist. He examined the leg and couldn't find any obvious fractures or cuts/bites. He said the bird was in obvious really bad condition and had been for a long time. He said the keen bone was very sharp and protruding and was very concerned that the bird had been sold in obviously bad condition with lesions and lots of pecked area. Being unable to diagnose Scarlet he said he thought it was possible from the large wounds on her back that an infection had spread to her leg and would treat her for that but given her condition gave scarlet a 50/50 chance.


    We have separated her from the other hens and have been giving her the prescribed penicilan mixed with water as well as adding water to her Pullet Mix to make it mushy. Initially she drank and ate a lot and was looking a bit better yesterday, getting up and "stretching" every now and again. She drank almost all the water with the penicillan yesterday. Today she seems to have gone backwards a bit being unable to really stand. She seems to have lost more weight. She is still drinking and eating a bit and her I cleaned the hutch out and put fresh straw as there seemed to be ALOT of poo! Since cleaning it , the poo today is no longer runny and has white on it (see picture).

    After doing alot of research through the forums I'm now concerned that she may hay have Marek's disease? I've been watching the others and they all seem ok except the silky bantum (fluffy) is acting a bit strange ... she does a weird thing with her head where she loos like she is nodding off (whilst she is still standing up) is this normal silky behavior or a sign of sickness?

    I hope someone can offer advice? I have fallen in love with these chickens and will be devastated if I lose them. I also don't want to prolong Scarlets pain if she is not going to recover.

    I will post this then post images seperately (once I've looked up how to do it)
     
  2. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

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  3. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

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  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Jacksonville, Florida
    I'm sorry for the troubles you're going through. First off you got the chickens from a breeder...your barred rock is a young pullet because she dosnt have a comb or wattles yet. Her back is bare because she has been incessantly mated by a rooster(s), thus all the scrapes and cuts, all this will heal in time and she'll grow new feathers on her back eventually, most likely after her first molt. I recommend that you visually inspect her for lice/mites, especially around the vent area. As far as her limping; there are 2 possibilities rather than thinking marek's; check the bottom of her feet for a dark in color round scab, if you see one, it's bumblefoot. Bumblefoot can be removed by minor surgery. If you dont see a round dark scab, the other possibility is that she might have jumped down from a high roost/perch and sprained her leg somehow. In this situation I recommend that you keep her alone in a cage with food and water provided, with plenty of rest and relaxation, needing time to heal the sprain. It might take awhile to heal, maybe 5 days or more. You can add vitamin B complex to her feed...you can purchase it at a pharmacy, crush a tablet into powder and sprinkle it in her feed, it might help speed up the healing process...your barred rocks poop looks normal.
    As far as your silkie is concerned, I recommend you check her for lice/mite as well, this would be my first guess. Check all of them for lice/mites. They can take a chciken down in a very short time. Good luck.
     
  5. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

    Thanks so much for the advice. We checked her foot earlier as I had read about bumblefoot so I think you might be right about the sprain. She seems about the same this morning. We'll keep doing what we are doing and cross our fingers. Is buying from a breeder bad? Where do you recommend to buy from? Thanks again for the advice it's much appreciated.

    Ps Nice bike!
     
  6. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Jacksonville, Florida
    Quote:Thanks for the compliment on the bike. Buying from a breeder isnt bad at all, as long as they are a reputable breeder. I've purshased all my chickens as day old chicks from one hatchery at various times over the years. That is my preference. But it's everyones choice where to buy chickens. Try and keep your Barred Rock calm, and resting off her bad leg as much as possible. You can add some scrambled egg to her feed, that'll provide her extra protein to help in healing and feather regrowth.
     
  7. rstampa

    rstampa Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2009
    Tampa, Florida
    Quote:Two of my hens have the exact same feather lose on their back minus the sore. I don't have a roaster but I think when they are roosting they must pick them out or others do it to them. However I've never seen any of my hens picking on these 2 birds. They're starting to get some pin feathers on their back so I hope they will feather out completely.
    Happy New Years
     
  8. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

    HELP

    Scarlett no longer walks at all and looking very gaunt. She finished her round of antibiotics.

    2 days ago when i went to change her water I found Maggotts/tiny worms in her poo and all over her bum [​IMG] I am unsure if the breeder wormed the chickens so I decided to worm them all. There were also lots of bugs crawling in the hay bedding (her coup only not the other chickens as far as I could tell) Panic!
    No poultry shops were open so I went to a local pet shop these are the measures I took:

    cleaned out entire coup for all chickens & burnt all straw & manure
    replaced with wood shavings
    sprayed all chickens with Avitrol bird & lice spray (not specifically for chickens No poultry shops were open so I went to a local pet shop)
    Immediately gave scarlett Ruddoducks Bird wormer in her water (again, not specifically for chickens from local pet shop)
    The next morning after withholding water overnight gave rest of chickens wormer in water.
    Added 'aristopet' sulphadim (says 'for control & treatment of caecal coccidiosis and entertis in cage birds') to water on recommendation from pet shop.


    Scarelett is still eating and drinking and looked better as far as her bum this morn. However she is a skeleton weight wise [​IMG]
    This morn after reading up in the forums I gave her a 15 min warm soapy water bath to try and clean up the scab on her bum and on the off chance she was egg bound (although I think she is too young)? I then noticed the large lump on her tummy between her legs. (see photo). It's definately not her leg... It's hard but I can't tell if it's an egg?

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    Scarlett is skin & Bones

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    The scab on Scarletts bum that had magotts/worms all over it 2 days ago (but clear now)

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    Scarletts (sick chicken) poo

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    The lump between Scarletts legs

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    Other birds poo










    On top of this, some of the poo from the other bird/s is foamy (see photo) could they also be getting sick or could it be a side effect from worming/ sulphadim I gave them [​IMG]

    My questions are:

    Any ideas what is wrong with her?
    Could she be egg bound? Or is she too young? Would this explain why she was limping when she first got sick?
    Considering she has now been sick for almost 2 weeks do I decide to put her down (I have considered this a couple of times but she seems so alert and is still eating & drinking) I dont want her to be in pain though.

    Any help would be much appreciated. I've only had chickens for about a month now and so far it's been horrible watching her in pain [​IMG]
     
  9. hethbear

    hethbear Out Of The Brooder

    Forgot to say, when I gave her the bath her vent was pulsing
     
  10. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Jacksonville, Florida
    I recommend you worm them with piperazine or flubenvet (if you have flubenvet in Australia, we dont have it here,) also you'll need to dust them all for lice/mites as well as inside their house, nests and roosts. Repeat dusting everything in 10 days including your chickens.
     

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