Recurring Pasty Butt (and now, peeling skin!)

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by HeatherB, Sep 6, 2010.

  1. HeatherB

    HeatherB Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 6, 2010
    Ellsworth Twp, OH
    This is Little Mr. Poopy Butt. We got these 6 chicks, our first, from a vendor at a local flea market at 2 weeks old (now 7 1/2 weeks), and I've had to wash his little chicky behind about every other day since. I don't know the breed, he's some sort of Bantam mix. He may even be a she, I'm not sure yet. I don't have a scale I can weigh him with [​IMG] Thought this was pasty butt, but from what I've read in different places, he should be over that by now.

    Droppings are mostly solid, usually brown, and white, sometimes with a slight reddish or yellow tint. They're sticking to his backside, the feathers on his belly, and his tail feathers. Now, to add insult to injury, the skin around his vent and on his poor little belly is peeling off. I'm guessing that this may be the result of repeated washings.. Aside from these symptoms, he doesn't act sick. He eats, drinks, runs around with the other chicks, and checks his pretty self out in my bathroom mirror after baths. None of the other chicks are having this issue or showing any other symptoms of illness.

    Aside from the baths (warm running water), I've tried baby oil and vaseline on his bottom. Vaseline seems to help the longest, pushing baths out to every few days. I've tried giving him/them oatmeal (I don't remember where I read it, but saw somewhere that might help). They also had a week of tetracycline in their water (one of the other chicks started having trouble breathing -- this helped!).

    They started out in a brooder with corn cob bedding, then with pine shavings. From there, the group moved into a small coop with an enclosed run. The floor inside the roosting area is wire, 1" squares, with raised roosts. A second chamber for nesting boxes is lined with straw. We move it every few days to minimize the build-up on the grass. The house is 4' x 2', and the run is 6' x 2.5' When it cools down too much, we plan to move the whole setup into the barn. I know it's small, but they're small.. and it's temporary. We're working on plans for something bigger. [​IMG]

    They're eating chick crumbles, grass, and whatever bugs they can catch.

    I would like to treat him myself if at all possible, and I worry with colder weather coming about having to wash him and put him back outside.. I called around when we had a chick with breathing problems, and the closest vet that sees poultry is an hour away. Any idea what could be causing this, and what I can do to fix it?




  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    The weight question really refers to whether he seems thin or of normal weight, not the numbers, but anyway --

    I suspect you are correct that the balding is from the washing. If you are bathing the whole chicken, I'd change that to just whatever is poopy. The feather loss in itself should not be a problem unless the others start pecking him.

    Sounds like you're taking good care of him. The only suggestion I have is probiotics -- from the feed store, yogurt with live organisms, people probiotic pills, whatever you can find. I'd give him a dose every day for a while. They use Tetracycline in people to sterilize the gut, so you know that little gut needs some good bacteria.

    Activia would be tempting (if you can find it plain,) but chickens aren't very lactose tolerant, so you don't want to give much more than a teaspoon or two a day.
    Good luck!!!
  3. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    Not sure of the cause, but you can put some olive oil on the skin so the poo isn't so hard to get off next time. Trimming the feathers/fluff around the vent can help too, but it looks like he/she's lost most of those.
  4. crawfordmama

    crawfordmama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 29, 2010
    The Lakes Region, NH
    Try putting a little vitamin E oil on his skin to help it heal. As for repeat pasty butt, keep washing gently, trim the fuzz on his butt and keep applying the vaseline. Hopefully he'll grow out of it. Best of luck! [​IMG]
  5. HeatherB

    HeatherB Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 6, 2010
    Ellsworth Twp, OH
    I've been washing the areas where the droppings are stuck.. unfortunately, that's been a wide area [​IMG] And thanks! The weight info will be helpful in the future.. I didn't realize it wasn't literal, and was trying to give as much information as possible.

    I'll hit the store tomorrow and see what I can find for the probiotics. We have vitamin E oil, olive oil and vaseline on hand, so we should be good there. If I do end up feeding Activia, do you typically offer it straight, or mixed with the feed?

    Thank you all for the advice!

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