Sick Runner!!!!! HELP!!!!


7 Years
Mar 1, 2012
My 1 day old runner is either sick or is suffering from being premature (we think). Originally, she was having trouble hatching; she poked a hole in the egg, and we could see her bill easily. But she stayed like that for half a day, only opening her mouth slightly. We used tweezers and broke some of the egg shell around her to help her out, but we saw some blood, so we stopped. While I was away, my dad opened her up and nursed her. She dried off, but wasn't normal. She couldn't move her feet, and still can't. They won't open up from their clumped position (when sitting), so their swimming and walking position (spread apart). But she can't even stand up, much less hold her head up. She is breathing a little harder than normal, but not too much harder. We taped some thin foam to her feet to see if that would help, and it's helping keep her in a sleeping position. She's drinking little, but when she does, it goes down fine. Eating very little (unmedicated crumbles). She can still move around, and sometimes rolls herself over on her back, but she can't stand up at all, much less open her feet. Is this being premature, or is she sick? Is there anything I can give her? We have added molasses to her water for the electrolytes (it worked last year with a wobbly black runner duckling we had). Please help!

Oh, and we call her Forest, for the feet braces. : )


10 Years
Jan 11, 2010
I was also once blessed with looking after a very special Duckling whom I named Forrest . He was a fighter and despite his deformity managed to get around. I hope for you your little Forest keeps fighting and she is soon running around normally. The hatching process really does ensure survival of the fittest and sometimes helping them isnt the kindest thing to do. Many would die in the egg rather than have to live with deformities- or sadly survive just a few days and then break out hearts when they pass.
Time, warmth food and water at this stage is all you can provide for her- she needs to gain some strength and then hopefully prove herself strong enough to survive. She may have a deformity that will mean she needs special care- but many ducklings that hatch weak just need an extra day or two than others who hatch normally.

Pleas elet us all know how things turn out for your little one.


8 Years
Feb 5, 2012
Necedah, Wi
I was told that once pipped the duckling could take up to 2 days to hatch out. If the duckling isnt strong enough to make it out of the shell then they arn't strong enough to make it in the world. Again this is just what I was told. So basically its nature weeding out the weak links. Sadly if the duckling isnt walking still I would assume she is weak and probubly wont make it. I'm sorry. I guess only time will tell. Good luck.

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