Rooster Can't Hold his head up, what's wrong?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by laurelsh, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. laurelsh

    laurelsh Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Four days ago I noticed my rooster's head would drift to the right. He would hold it back up, and it would drift again.

    Yesterday his head was much more to the right. This morning, he's not come out of the coop and is on the floor with his head way to the right and sometimes upside down. He can't control his neck/head. What is wrong? Is this Marek's?

    I also have a hen whose eyes are cloudy, and she can't see well. She's been that way about 2 months. Is this related to the Rooster's problem?

    What should I do?

    Thanks, Laurel
  2. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    I have no clue - I am so sorry - but will give you a bump hoping others will have better ideas.

    Have you checked them over for lice/mites?

    What are they eating?

    Any mold or moldy food he could have gotten into?

    How is he doing now? Is your hen eating well on her own?

    I would bring them into the house, seperate crates to monitor their eating/drinking and poo.
  3. laurelsh

    laurelsh Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Thanks for your reply.
    No, have not checked for lice/mites, but 4 other hens are just fine.
    They eat Lay Pellet, no moldy food that I can tell.
    This morning he is just as bad. Head upside down, can't walk. I don't know how he's going to eat or drink that way. I'm wondering if I should put him down so he doesn't continue to suffer or starve to death. Very sad!

  4. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    You might try researching Mareks. I don't know if that's what it is, it's just where I would start looking. I do know you can treat Marek's, to an extent.
  5. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    Maybe do a search of this site.

    Use the search located in the upper blue bar - not the google search box on the right - the BYC search is just above your logged in name - in the upper left of the page.

    You can search specific words "upside down head" for example and in specific forums or all the board, also search by title or message body. I just did this search, upside down head, and found 4 threads in Emer/Diseases/Injury and Cures - most talk about silkies and vitamin therapy.

    Do you have any PolyViSol - non iron formula? If so, I would give him 3 or so drops along his beak a day for a few days to see if it helps.
  6. laurelsh

    laurelsh Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Thank you. I did a search on Marek's and found the following:


    Paralysis of legs, wings and neck.
    Loss of weight.
    Grey iris or irregular pupil.
    Vision impairment.
    Skin around feather follicles raised and roughened.

    It looks to me like my Roo has paralysis of neck, and one of my hens has grey iris. So 2 of my 6 appear to have Mareks. I'm going to get some Hypericum and try that as a treatment..

  7. laurelsh

    laurelsh Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2007
    Oh my gosh! The rooster is recovering, and I didn't yet start any treatment. Last night he was up on his feet, head a little crooked but getting around fine!
    This morning he looks even better. Head is still a bit crooked, but it's so good to see him on his feet and he's crowing too.

    Wonder what that was??

  8. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens


    I wonder also............maybe he eat something that was toxic until out of his system or maybe he was injured some how, pinched a nerve in his neck or maybe........ [​IMG] [​IMG]

    But [​IMG]
  9. welasharon

    welasharon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 28, 2010
    North Florida
    there was just recently a thread on botulism (an old one resurected) that Kathyinmoto had posted that you may want to search for
  10. McCormack Farms

    McCormack Farms Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 21, 2013
    Northern IL
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2013

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