Staggering Chicken

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Newcastle Chickens, Nov 26, 2007.

  1. Newcastle Chickens

    Newcastle Chickens New Egg

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    Nov 26, 2007
    Two days ago, one of my chickens was found laying on the floor about 8 feet down from where she was roosting. She had trouble walking and I took her to the vet because I thought she might have some disease the others would catch. By the time I got her there, she looked dead but she wasn't. She was fine the day before and showed no signs of illness.
    The vet kept her for the day but was unable to determine what was wrong with her and sent me home with some antibiotics and told me if she died, I should have an atopsy done. When I got her home, I was putting some food in the cage when she busted out of it and took off running back to the other chickens. She acted totally normal and hungry. That was Saturday night. When she roosted that night, I took her off the roost and put her back in the cage thinking she might still be unstable. The next morning, I put her back with the rest of the chickens and she acted fine until this evening (Monday).
    I found her kind of staggering, holding her neck down as if she was having trouble lifting it. She looks just like she did on Saturday morning. I have put her back in the cage tonight and have given her some antibiotics but I have no clue what could cause this. Has anyone else seen anything like this?
     
  2. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    have a good look around the grounds...totally clean your coop...
    It sounds as though she is eating (or drinking) something which may be poisonous... is there any water source which might be algae filled or rank? look for old grains...forgotten wet straw/hay or such....
     
  3. Newcastle Chickens

    Newcastle Chickens New Egg

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    Nov 26, 2007
    Thanks for your input, I really appreciate it!

    She's in a large coop with other chickens that eat the same thing she does. The waterer I use is clean and the feed hasn't changed. They get scratch and lay crumbles.

    Although, I just checked her this morning and she is sitting up looking much better. I was thinking maybe she dislocated her neck?? I have no idea what could be wrong. I think maybe I will buy some new feed today and throw out the rest just to be safe. She's a nice chicken and I hate to see her like that.
     
  4. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

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    Jan 11, 2007
    those scratch grains can often get trampled into the ground or lie onderneath the hay or straw or bedding ...
    Changing the feed is a good idea just in case.
    I do not think dislocation of the neck is indicated...chickens necks look fragile but are actually incredibly strong.
    Here is a link to articles I have saved on crookneck (neck twisted) and limberneck (neck hanging down )... there are many causes of the symptom but when it comes on so suddenly it is often associated with a toxin of some kind (there is even the possibility that a bug feasted on a bird or other source of botulism or other toxin and carried it over to your bird when it was eaten)
    http://dlhunicorn.conforums.com/index.cgi?board=emergencies&action=display&num=1160928615
     
  5. Newcastle Chickens

    Newcastle Chickens New Egg

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    Nov 26, 2007
    Thanks for all the information.

    This morning, she looked almost back to normal. I have never seen a chicken look so close to death and come back....twice! I have her in a dog kennel for now but I'm afraid to put her back with the other chickens. Last time she looked good for two days when I found her staggering around again. When this happens, her neck hangs like it's broken. I layed her on her side and propped up her head, expecting her to die and the next thing I know, she's sitting up looking like nothing is wrong. I can't figure this out. I think I am going to put her in a small pen by herself for a while so that I can better monitor what she is doing and eating. Maybe she's getting poisoned some how? All my other birds seem fine.
    Thank you again for all the info.
     
  6. ianschooks

    ianschooks New Egg

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    Apr 8, 2013
    Hi All,
    I have 4 chooks and love them very much. they are totally free range and I suplement them with a 5 grain mix....no layer pellets. I have just run out of this mix and decided to put them on a change and used organic rspca laying pellets. After leaving Friday night I returned Monday to find my big 18month old white chook dead !! ok....chooks can do that.... I thought....Today I notice my favorite ISA Brown has the staggers like she is drunk. She tries to scratch and falls over etc she will put a wing out to try and catch her balance. I have spoken to all I know with chooks and the consensis is that it is egg bound. I said to one lady "how do you know" she replied "because when I cut the bead off one, 3 eggs came out its bottom.. Apparently the new diet gives a harder shell and bigger eggs making it harder to pass through the hips and once the tube dries out the egg sticks to the tube...... I have bought some cod liver oil and a syringe, turned her up side down and bothe jet blasted and dribbled oil in her rear..... I have massaged her guts and hips and 1 hour later got an oily egg....success? or coincedance? I had trouble catching her for a second go and thats a good sign.... will it work? dont know but Ive tried!!
     

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