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Sick chick, Marek's or a neurological problem??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Chotii, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. Chotii

    Chotii Songster

    A little background: this little "mutt" chick came from eggs given me by a friend from her flock. The eggs were dirty and out of 20, only 4 hatched. 2 were healthy, 2 were weak and sick, and one of those died.

    The weak one that lived hatched on about Sept 10, so is now 2 weeks old. Its feet were curled, so I taped them flat for 3 days. After the first 5 or so days, when the other one had died and this one still wasn't eating but was wobbling along on its taped feet, I began hand-feeding it with a turkey baster and softened antibiotic chick crumbles. It got stronger and seemed to get better. It began standing up, walking (but awkwardly and stiffly like a toddler) and feeding itself voraciously.

    2 days ago I began noticing that when it stands up, first one wing sags and then the other. It pulls the wings back up, but they sag again. Today, it's beginning to show symptoms in the legs, which seem to be going involuntarily stiff in turns when the wings sag.

    It's still eating voraciously but does not appear to be gaining any weight or getting much benefit from the food.

    Does this sound like disease, or some neurological or congenital problem related to its weakness when it hatched? I don't expect it to live. I'm realistic. I won't cull it until and unless I see it suffering, but I'll do that if I have to.

    It's not old enough for the incubation period for Merek's to have passed (and no, it hasn't been vaccinated).

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