Potential vitamin or niacin deficiency?

chickdaddy486

Hatching
Dec 18, 2020
4
7
9
Hello everyone,

I am new to duck ownership and have been blessed with 2 of the sweetest ducklings on earth. They love being pet, playing around in the backyard during the day (we’ve been keeping them inside at night as it drops low here in the desert at night and is very warm during the day), and they pretty much never stop eating. We believe one of them may be a female and the other a male, as one of them started quacking about a week or two ago.

Everything has been great until recently. The one that we suspect to be the female started throwing her head back and letting it go completely limp. Before doing so she always lets out a gasp as if she were taking her last breath.... sometimes she will literally flip herself over like in the video I will link. It’s been really stressful dealing with this as a new duck owner just trying to figure it out, so I am considering driving 2hrs away to our nearest poultry vet if I can help her back to normal in the next few days, but in the meantime I was hoping to seek some advice here. Our other baby that we suspect may be the male (starting to make a loud high pitched squealing sound) has not shown any signs of this issue at all.

Here is a video of an episode that she just had a few minutes ago. I missed the part where she gasped and tumbled over but this is how she reacts almost every time it happens. After picking her and her head up she sits and walks around like normal, but her behaviors have changed and seem a little less happy over the past few days this has been going on.


Based on what I’ve read this could be a vitamin or niacin deficiency? Maybe someone else here will recognize this right away and be able to give me a more definitive answer though. We started giving them boiled duck eggs today and I ordered these two products on Amazon that will arrive tomorrow:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0042LA2PG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_u..4FbP2J86K6?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07PFQFK49/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_PX.4FbPFZDED7
 

SolarDuck

Crowing
Jan 31, 2020
1,909
4,518
431
Definitely seems like you need to take her to the vet hopefully someone can give you advice on what to do in the meantime. Definitely make sure she stays hydrated
 

Sheriloo3

Songster
Aug 20, 2020
93
154
116
What is in the wateter?
My guess is that it's water with a little leftover food in it. Ducks are super messy eaters and it's nearly impossible to keep the waterer clean as they use it to wash their faces and nostrils out when eating.
 

Sheriloo3

Songster
Aug 20, 2020
93
154
116
Hello everyone,

I am new to duck ownership and have been blessed with 2 of the sweetest ducklings on earth. They love being pet, playing around in the backyard during the day (we’ve been keeping them inside at night as it drops low here in the desert at night and is very warm during the day), and they pretty much never stop eating. We believe one of them may be a female and the other a male, as one of them started quacking about a week or two ago.

Everything has been great until recently. The one that we suspect to be the female started throwing her head back and letting it go completely limp. Before doing so she always lets out a gasp as if she were taking her last breath.... sometimes she will literally flip herself over like in the video I will link. It’s been really stressful dealing with this as a new duck owner just trying to figure it out, so I am considering driving 2hrs away to our nearest poultry vet if I can help her back to normal in the next few days, but in the meantime I was hoping to seek some advice here. Our other baby that we suspect may be the male (starting to make a loud high pitched squealing sound) has not shown any signs of this issue at all.

Here is a video of an episode that she just had a few minutes ago. I missed the part where she gasped and tumbled over but this is how she reacts almost every time it happens. After picking her and her head up she sits and walks around like normal, but her behaviors have changed and seem a little less happy over the past few days this has been going on.


Based on what I’ve read this could be a vitamin or niacin deficiency? Maybe someone else here will recognize this right away and be able to give me a more definitive answer though. We started giving them boiled duck eggs today and I ordered these two products on Amazon that will arrive tomorrow:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0042LA2PG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_u..4FbP2J86K6?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07PFQFK49/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_PX.4FbPFZDED7
Almost looks like a seizure. I hope you find out soon, poor thing... I had some ducks for a while but didn't have them long enough to get much education in their health and issues. I'm more of a chicken lady!

Best of luck to you!
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
24,258
99,072
1,331
Iowa
It appears your bird is exhibiting neurological signs, as well as opisthotonic posturing; the latter sign is a common one in the Accipitriformes, and Falconiformes group when there is a B vitamin deficiency, and sometimes a vitamin E deficiency.

1608816003542.png

http://avianmedicine.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/40_raptorsb2.pdf

I would suggest going to your nearest store and picking up some Injectable Cattle B Complex, and dosing the bird 1ml a day, either orally with a syringe, or if she's willing to eat treats, then drip some over the treats. Considering a vitamin E deficiency, you can pick up some vitamin E soft gel capsules for humans, and give her one 400iu capsule a day. Her main diet should consist of a feed formulated for ducks, or all poultry.

https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/durvet-hi-level-vitamin-b-complex
https://www.target.com/p/nature-made-vitamin-e-180-mg-400-iu-dl-alpha-softgels-100ct/-/A-11010057?ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google&fndsrc=tmnv&DFA=71700000072967602&CPNG=PLA_DVM+0060H00000uHnyrQAC-Nature+Made-Google+September+ADD+ON-2020-Flight&adgroup=PLA_Multivitamins&LID=700000001393753pgs&network=g&device=c&location=9018549&gclid=Cj0KCQiAifz-BRDjARIsAEElyGIm12TZnyU_rf_LUGDXnN1_26i9uBgRQ5nHnzfJu4vlvAjIpFmVMTsaAjlyEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

There are a wide load of other conditions that can cause similar symptoms to what you're seeing; specifically, toxicosis, metabolic conditions, bacterial, or viral infections. If you don't see improvement with the vitamins, you could try starting her on an antibiotic such as Enrofloxacin, considering if the problem is related to a bacterial infection.

Try to keep her upright as much as you can, and hand-offer her foods, or treats frequently. Dripping sugar water, or an electrolyte along her bill to keep her hydrated may be good too. I hope you're able to see a vet as that will likely prove the best prognosis for your bird.

https://allbirdproducts.com/products/baytril-10
 

chickdaddy486

Hatching
Dec 18, 2020
4
7
9
Thanks everyone for all the replies!
Just so everyone is aware, we have been feeding this Purina Duck feed below:

22154490-3AFB-4BA2-B514-58A4832FC092.jpeg


I am happy to hear advice on what we should be feeding them instead, as I’m sure there is crap in this purina food. We only want the best and right now we are mostly just ignorant to the best feeds, so anything you guys recommend as the best I will get it for them.

I picked up the injectable vitamin B complex this morning and begin dosing that with vitamin E. It hasn’t been long but we already feel like she’s starting to act better. Hopefully we’ll see some improvement in the next few days, otherwise we’ll be driving out to the poultry vet after Christmas.

Happy Holidays everyone!
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
24,258
99,072
1,331
Iowa
Thanks everyone for all the replies!
Just so everyone is aware, we have been feeding this Purina Duck feed below:

View attachment 2462430

I am happy to hear advice on what we should be feeding them instead, as I’m sure there is crap in this purina food. We only want the best and right now we are mostly just ignorant to the best feeds, so anything you guys recommend as the best I will get it for them.

I picked up the injectable vitamin B complex this morning and begin dosing that with vitamin E. It hasn’t been long but we already feel like she’s starting to act better. Hopefully we’ll see some improvement in the next few days, otherwise we’ll be driving out to the poultry vet after Christmas.

Happy Holidays everyone!

What you're feeding them now is a well-formulated feed for ducks of all ages; however, if you're looking to get something higher quality, I would suggest Mazuri feeds.

I hope you continue to see improvement, and if not, I hope the vet is able to help you. Have a happy holiday, and keep us posted on her condition.
 

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