sick chick?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by gypsygardens, May 4, 2009.

  1. gypsygardens

    gypsygardens New Egg

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    May 4, 2009
    Asheville, NC
    Hello all! I'm brand new to chickens and forums and I promise to do an introduction later, but right now I need some advice!

    We got ten golden comet chicks on Friday (four roosters (!) and six lovely ladies) and I believe they were a day or two old but I'm not sure how to tell. In any case, that makes them around 5 or 6 days old at this point. They've been great. One seemed a little lethargic at first, but with some water and food became really energetic. No signs of distress since then. They get clean water, plenty of starter feed, lots of good perching places, plenty of room, great ventilation, a warm but not too warm light, and so much love. I'm addicted to watching them and noticed during one of my many observations today that a couple of them have started having runny poop. They don't seem lethargic, I don't think. But one of the ones with runny poop is also sneezing a good bit. If any of them are lethargic, it's her, but I can't tell if I'm just overreacting at this point. She had a tiny bit of poop stuck to her rear when I got home from work tonight and I cleaned it off right away. She doesn't have any other symptoms that I'm aware of.
    They are on pine bedding and the first thing I did was give them fresh bedding, although it was dry and pretty clean still. Then I started doing research and it seems some people feel like pine isn't that great for chicks. I read that any soft wood could be toxic and that if they eat the shavings it could interfere with digestion. So, after reading that I covered the bedding with a sheet. They were very shocked with this new addition but seem to have adjusted well. This was about half an hour ago so I have no idea yet whether this will solve the problem and thought I'd get any advice I could as soon as possible.

    If she ate the pine shavings will she recover if she doesn't continue eating them? Is there anything else I can do? Anything in particular I should be watching for?
     
  2. patyrdz

    patyrdz The Madd Hatcher

    Feb 26, 2009
    Southern Pines, NC
    My chicks always have a wide range of poo, it changes all day long. If it is not really bad, a little runny poo is normal. Since they are newly hatched, they are just getting their little bodies working! As far as the chick that seems a little down, try a little sugar water. This should help perk her up. It won't hurt if they all drink a little. Nice going on the bottom cleaning!! Watch for pasty butt, and clean at once![​IMG]
    I hope this helps, good luck.[​IMG]

    [​IMG] from North Carolina!![​IMG]
     
  3. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    the sneezing is probably from the dry bedding material (dust) birds needs it to be not too dry. Just spritz any new bedding with a bit of water before adding the birds (dont make things too wet tho) I never put new chicks directly onto bedding material... they need a while to realize it is not a food source LOL. I use paper towels and change them frequently the first week or two. Offer them a cup of live culture (plain not flavored ) yogurt the first five weeks... this will help them develop a good intestinal flora which will help them have a strong immune system.
     
  4. gypsygardens

    gypsygardens New Egg

    5
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    7
    May 4, 2009
    Asheville, NC
    Thanks for the advice! I'll try some sugar water. Is there anything I can use for bedding that will also let them scratch? The sheet seems to be driving them crazy but I don't want to put them back on the pine. If I wet the pine a little wet will they still try to eat it? What about straw?
    Right before I went to bed last night the one seemed to be sort of gagging a bit while all the others were sound asleep. I encouraged her to drink water and then she fell asleep after. She seems to be doing better today. She's trying to fly around again like all the others and she seems to be eating well. Could the gagging have been from some straw she had eaten? Or is it cause for more concern?
     
  5. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    Straw is a definite no-no on my list (is hollow where mold fungus and mycotoxin can lie hidden... incl parasites )
     
  6. gypsygardens

    gypsygardens New Egg

    5
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    May 4, 2009
    Asheville, NC
    man, it seems like everything is a no-no. i guess i'll just stick to the sheet over the pine for now. thanks for the advice. i'm glad you caught me before i put the straw in.

    i noticed something new in the chicks today. there's some sort of noise that seems to be coming from their nostrils. it could be the chicken version of a stuffy nose but i don't for sure. it almost sounds like wet little popping noises when they breathe. it isn't very loud. but i definitely didn't notice it until today. there doesn't seem to be any fluid or anything coming out of the nostrils or eyes, it just sounds a little wet. i'm really worried about them. they still seem to have lots of energy though.
     

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