RIR not walking/ off balance

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Beckyhsinglsc, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. Beckyhsinglsc

    Beckyhsinglsc Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 21, 2009
    Gilbert, AZ
    My Coop
    I have a sick RIR.
    She has been in a cage in the bathroom for a couple of days now and hasn't changed much.
    She is having trouble walking. She can half stand, but tends to stand with one foot on top of the other.
    When she walks she seems off balance and uses her wings to balance herself when she's laying down.
    She is alert and eating/drinking/pooping. Her poop is runnier today.
    I don't know how much she weighs or how much she did weigh.
    Her comb looks normal, although she has a dark smudge on it with a dark smudge on her head by the comb also. I tried to wash it and got a little off. It looks slightly greeninsh on the rag. It's hard, she doesn't like it being touched, but she never really did like being touched (unlike my other RIR.)
    She can move around some but seems unable to control her legs/feet very well.
    The other 4 hens seem fine, so far.
    I also have 6 16 week olds in another coop that are also OK.
    How can I tell if it's Marek's. She's just over 1 year old(10/09 hatch), so I wouldn't expect it, but if it is how would I know? I have been reading about diseases but it's hard to pinpoint what to look for to make the final diagnosis.

    She has been eating Cascade Organic soy/corn free layer mash for about 4 months.
    She doesn't seem to want that now unless I make it into a warm watery mash, then she eats it fine. She also is eating yogurt, but won't eat scrambled egg.
    The hens are housed in an open-air coop (this is the AZ desert) with deep-litter. They also free-range most of the day on my 1/2 acre lot with grass(rye at the moment, bermuda in the summer).
    I did cover most of the front of the coop with a shower curtain during the "cold" snap we had last week. It actually got down to the mid 20s. We (and the chickens) aren't used to that.
    There is a picture of my coop on my page.


  2. KimberlyJ

    KimberlyJ Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 13, 2010
    I read a post the other day about a chicken having something in her ear that was causing her to tilt to one side and fall down. It's something easy to check for and easy to fix so I'd say check her ears to rule that out first. Other than that I don't have anthing to add. I'm so sorry. I hope someone else comes along soon to help you out.
  3. ZaneyMama

    ZaneyMama Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 2, 2010
    Boulder, Colorado
    I had a chicken doing the exact same thing last week. I finally found a vet who specializes in chickens (Dr. Bill Guerrera at Animal Doctor in Broomfield, CO in case anyone is in Colorado) and he told me there was no sure answer until the necropsy, but he suspects Marek's.

    First she looked dizzy and preferred to sit instead of stand, but it progressed within a couple days to her being unable to stand up. We ended up putting her down since she stopped enjoying eating and was losing weight.

    Good luck!
  4. tammye

    tammye Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2010
    you can try to give her some vitamins and electrolyte solution in her water, may help her. If it is not Marke's it may be lameness due to a vitamin deficiency, hope so since this seems to be curable. Good luck
  5. fiberart57

    fiberart57 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 31, 2009
    You might wet her food down with hot water and puncture a Vitamin D and E capsule and put one drop in her food. I had one doing the same thing and after two doses of this she was walking straight again. It took about a week because you can't give it every day, just every other day or every three days because it's a fat-soluble vitamin and will stay with them for a couple of days.

  6. Beckyhsinglsc

    Beckyhsinglsc Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 21, 2009
    Gilbert, AZ
    My Coop
    She's doing a lot better. I gave her the infant vitamins and lots of good food.
    She went outside today but I had to keep her separate from the others because they were picking on her and she is still a little too weak to defend herself or run away.
    She was foraging and eating laying mash.
    She's sleeping in the house tonight.
    I hope the others accept her back. She used to be the top chicken. [​IMG]

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