Rooster with serious balance issues - Keeps tipping over - Normal otherwise but getting worse, Help!


In the Brooder
6 Years
Dec 17, 2013
My rooster Hunson randomly started having balance issues a few days ago. He would walk weird and start running forward, unintentionally, until he would tip over. I kept him in the garage with food and water for a day, and it seemed like he improved a lot (could walk around without falling, albeit looking like he was constipated), but the next day started to get worse. Now he's at the point where he can't even get up at all without tipping over.

Pretty much everything else seems normal about him. He was acting normal and crowing (his crow seems to have changed and gotten a little scratchier the past couple days though). His droppings are normal, heart rate is average, eyes, ears, vent, feathers, feet...everything seems normal. The only thing that I can find that's a little unusual is a hard lump on his crop and a couple on his left leg, but those have been there for years. Also, no, it's almost certainly not Marek's. He's well over 6 months old, and doesn't have any of the usual signs of that.

A rooster he lived with (half-brother) had the same thing several months ago, and died less than 24 hours later. He had other health problems whereas Hunson has been really healthy.

Any ideas? I'm terrified that he's just going to keep getting worse, and looking around for solutions online didn't provide much helpful info. Any leads would be hugely appreciated, thanks for looking!
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Hi Allkindsofkinds, thanks for the reply. It's actually been relatively cool the past few days, and he's had plenty of access to shade, plus the place I've been keeping him is cool. He's been like this for several days now and is getting worse, so it doesn't seem to be heat stroke. :/
Is there any way toxic substances could have gotten into their pen? It may also be a vitamin b deficiency. You could try suplementing. Other than that, I would have to suggest seeing a vet if you can.
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I figured he might have a niacin (vitamin B1 deficiency) so I gave him some and it didn't seem to help, but I'll try again. As for toxicity, that may be another culprit. Could be algae poisoning, botulism (doubtful), or he could have had a bad reaction to some potatoes that were laying out in the garden, although I'd say that's relatively unlikely. I actually hope it's poisoning as that may be easier to treat, but it seems like it may be something else.

As for taking him to a vet...there's only one vet here that even looks at chickens, and they don't seem to actually know much about them.

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