Sick chicken with weak leg

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Skotadi, Nov 16, 2016.

  1. Skotadi

    Skotadi Just Hatched

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    Nov 16, 2016
    Hi all, we have a young 15 week old Barred Plymouth Rock hen that is having trouble walking. It first started with her left leg but then shifted to her right, her left leg is now completely functional but her right leg is loosing alot of muscle mass and she seems to drag the foot every where or walk on it with the toes curled up. I live in New Zealand and our vet told us that we do not have marrek or new castle in the country and they could not determine what the condition is, the anti-biotics and painkillers they prescribed did not seems to help either. The hen is eating and drinking very well, she seems to be always hungry. We had two adult brown shavers having simmilar problems before but they recovered within two days so we did not think too much about it, but our little barred rock doesn't seem to be getting any better after 8 days. We have been giving her human multi-vitamin droplets for the past three days but she doesn't seem to be getting better. I am just feeling very helpless towards her and our vet didn't help either, just wondering whether I should put her down because we cannot keep other chickens from bullying her outside and we can't keep her inside foever.
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Welcome to BYC. Make sure that your vitamins contain riboflavin (vitamin B 2) and getting a fresh balanced chicken feed which might help. Riboflavin deficiency commonly is a cause of walking on curled under toes and hocks. The longer the symptoms have gone on the more chances of this becoming permanent. Some people have seen results within days or weeks. Hopefully, that is the problem, but there are many leg bone deformities and conditions that affect poultry.
     
  3. Skotadi

    Skotadi Just Hatched

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    Nov 16, 2016
    Thank you, yes the vitamin does include Vitamin B groups, Her condition is already over a week, we are fearing it might last out her life time as she doesn't seems to be getting better.
     
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Sorry that she is no better. Since Mareks is a universal disease, I was not aware that it wasn't in New Zealand. Does she get a balanced chicken feed with vitamins and minerals? I hope she starts to stand . Can you try a sling or chicken chair on her to get her up and keep her clean?

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. Skotadi

    Skotadi Just Hatched

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    Nov 16, 2016
    She is still not getting better, new symtoms that I noticed are that her paralyzed leg is trembling when she is lying down, the other is that we found a scabbed over cut from under her foot, but the wound looks old and doesn't look like that it was infected, could this have caused the problem? But the part that have always bugged me is that it started with her left leg and one day it suddenly changed to being her right leg, we are very certain of this because we had a colored ring on her left leg.
    We have been feeding her vitamin suppliments for the past few days and she is still not showing signs of recovery. All the other chickens from her group are all very healthy, however we did notice that two of our grown ups have stopped laying for a while, one is a Gold laced Wyandotte and the other is an Orpington but these happened after our sick barred rock was seperated so I am not too sure if they are related. I am also messaging her leg everyday, it seems she does have the muscle to withstand some pressure on her leg but she is not able to pull her foot up to walk and all her claws seems limp, she is able to move them a little bit but doesn't do it very often. I can see that she desperately wants to walk but is not able to, she have scraped the paralyzed foot'b back due to the constant dragging, we tried to hold her foot in place with popcicle sticks but she always find a way to get rid of them when we are not watching.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2016
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Do you feed a balanced fresh chicken feed that contains vitamins and minerals? Some lameness can be due to leg bone deformities caused by mineral deficiencies in parents or early in life. Heredity may also be part of it. Since Mareks disease is present in Australia, there is probably a good chance that New Zealand has it as well. It spreads worldwide when poultry are brought in from other countries. Whatever her problem is, I hope it gets better. Sometimes we have to euthanize birds with a poor quality of life or suffering, but some pet birds can be looked after with extra care. I have one right now with a lameness problem that needs to be put down, and it is a difficult thing to do.
     
  7. Skotadi

    Skotadi Just Hatched

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    Nov 16, 2016
    We feed the chickens a laying feed with grit, but we just realized that it have no animal protein in it, not sure it effects them, we have now swapped to a different brand of laying pellet, just wants to see if it is better for the chickens, we also feed them some bread we get from our friend who runs a bakery, but only about two times a week because we usally feed the bread to the pigs. We have chick crumbs for the chick up to 8 weeks and growing pellet for chickens up to 18 weeks (i think). As for vitamins, we feed the chickens chopped vegtables and fruits leftovers we collect from our local supermarket. We have recently also bought vitamin supplements for birds which contains the same essentials for chickens. We are going to take her to another vet again tomorrow to see if they have any different opinions than the one we went to last time. If nothing can be done, then we may have to put her down, she is struggling too much and hurting herself trying to stand and move around, but some times thing have to be done, I don't want to see her suffer like this.
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Most chicken feed in the US and Europe contain no animal products even though chickens are omnivores. But if you look here you can occasionally find one that does. One can add a little meat or liver to the feed for a treat. After Thanksgiving dinner, my chickens love to get the turkey carcass to clean up. I was surprised to read once that it is actually illegal in the UK to feed any kitchen leftovers to chickens.
    Please let us know how your chicken gets along.
     
  9. Skotadi

    Skotadi Just Hatched

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    Nov 16, 2016
    We, did some research of our own and found that Marek is present in New Zealand (vets are just hopeless), the problem is that we do not have access to any vaccines that we can obtain and the vets do not have poutry vaccination service either. But I still don't think that it is Marek as she shows no symtoms in her pupil or skin and others that she was a part of isn't showing any symtoms either. But sometimes you never know, we will try to get her a blood test at another vet tomorrow, hopefully we will find out what's wrong with her, have my fingers crossed.
     
  10. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    You can not vaccinate older Chickens for Mereks.......It could be Nutrition?.....Cut out all scraps/treats....Feed the regular feed....You can try adding dry Cat food for a boost of protein...Give it to them twice a week...Two hand fulls.......



    Cheers!
     

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