Slipped tendon or infection? How to treat my 3 day old Silkie chick


Mar 28, 2018

This is a 3 day old Silkie chick who walks as though it has a slipped tendon in the left leg but it also has this sore on its hock. I’ve already watched just about every You Tube video about how to straighten the leg and snap the tendon in place securing it with gauze and a straw. I built it a “chick chair” which it is in all day except for the “physical therapy” sessions I’m doing every 2 hours. I’ve given it the liquid chicken vitamins plus some vitamin B Complex which I read is helpful with chicken leg injuries. I diluted a super small amount of aspirin in water and fed her some in a dropper since she does seem to be in pain and is chirping ALOT. I’ve never done this before and would like some advice or success stories. What else could I do?
It is most likely a leg bone deformity, and they are usually not fixable. Google varus valgus deformity in poultry for more info. However, it doesn’t hurt to try to help. I would be inclined to remove the splints and let it try to move on it’s own. The chick chair is good to place food and water right in front of it to reach. Good luck.
It sounds like you are devoted to this chick and doing everything you can for it short of calling in the National Guard. If the treatment is going to work, you should see some improvement over the next week. If it doesn't work, you can't say you didn't try.

You could use an antibiotic ointment on the hock wound.
After seeing the video and hearing her distressed chirping, I'm wondering if she has other issues besides the bad leg.

Does she do that distressed chirping when in her sling? Or is it just when she's putting weight on the bad leg? If it's just when she's putting weight on it, the mad chirping indicates pain.

If she chirps like that all the time, she may be suffering from other serious issues.
No distressed chirping in the sling. She eats, drinks and poops fine in there too. I’m checking on her every couple of hours. I’m nervous to go to bed tonight with her in the sling and wonder if I should put her back with the group to sleep. I’m curious if the lady in Derpy’s story kept him in the sling overnight too. She doesn’t say she took him out at night but I did ask her and am waiting to hear back. I don’t want to ruin any progress I’ve made today by taking her out and letting her fumble around in the brooder with the other chicks.
I'm relieved to hear that her distressed chirping is only associated with her putting weight on her bum leg. If you do not hear back from the Derpy chick person, my vote is to keep her in her sling at night so she doesn't injure her leg when putting weight on it. Besides, it's obvious she's in a lot of pain when she does. That's very stressful, and stress isn't good for a brand new chick.

For chicks that must be isolated from other chicks, I've found that rigging a heating pad to simulate being under a broody hen can comfort and quiet a lonely chick. No other heat is required. Just rig the pad with some soft fabric like flannel or polartec around the pad and place it so it just barely touches the chick's back and head. Experiment with the heat so the chick appears content. If it continues to chirp, turn to the next highest setting.

I've done this with a sick chick and it works wonders.
I have a hunch the swelling is from fluid accumulating in the inflamed tissue, not bacteria. I'm afraid this is becoming an issue that is beyond any of our abilities.

What's needed is a vet to x-ray the leg and see precisely what is going on with the bones and tendons. All we're doing is guessing. Not having x-rays, manipulating the leg is probably doing more harm than good.

I realize that a vet is probably not a viable option. That leaves exploring other options. One is accepting the leg probably can't be fixed. You can try to bring down the swelling somehow, but then what? This chick will probably never walk. How will you care for it? It won't be able to care for itself. That leaves euthanasia as the last option.

I'm sorry, but I would consider that last option.

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