Sudden onset leg spasms in 2 week old bantam chick

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Spidergravy, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. Spidergravy

    Spidergravy New Egg

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    Feb 7, 2014
    Hello! I'm brand, brand new to all things chickens, and this site has been brilliant for information and help. I was wondering if anyone had anything to advise here.

    I hatched three little bantam chicks in an incubator for my reception class almost two weeks ago. We got three chicks out of five eggs (and I've learnt a massive amount about what went wrong there, for next time). All three chicks were happy and fine and have been scrabbling around in straw in a brooder with a heat pad, chick crumb and water since then. They are eating and pooing machines! It's brilliant.

    On Monday I picked them up and played with them on the floor for a bit and noticed that when I put one of them down, his/her left leg would not bear its weight. He fell onto his side and lay there with his leg out stiff, then pulled it under him with his toes curled up. I took him to my local experts who said that he'd suffered some trauma (it's possible that one of the children might have held him a little roughly although I was supervising them carefully) and that he couldn't do much except give me a pair of nasty looking scissors he called a dispatcher. I phoned the vet who said that there's not a lot he could do, and offered to do the Deed should I not want to do it myself.

    I know he's just a chicken and no one really seems to hold out much hope. And I really, really don't want him to be suffering, but I'd love to give him a bit more chance at life than two weeks in a brooder. Since Monday Limpy has been shuffling round the brooder using his left wing as a crutch, bearing no weight on his left leg. Makes his way around from water to food to the warm bit under the heat pad, but spends most of his time lying on his non-injured side with the bad leg either out straight or tucked under him. So he is eating and drinking. The other two are sort of pecking him and jumping on him and generally just trampling, but they do snuggle up together as well. I've been holding Limpy at the water and food when I can, to help him along, but I am not sure if I could splint his leg, or make some sort of wheeled contraption that he could scoot along on with his wing, or if I need to separate him from the others, hand-feed him, give him a painkiller, anything.

    All advice would be gratefully received.

    Thank you!
     
  2. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

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    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  3. Spidergravy

    Spidergravy New Egg

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    Feb 7, 2014
    Thank you so much. I'm researching chick chairs too, to save him having to walk too far for anything.
     
  4. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

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  5. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

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    Please keep us posted on how he's doing! I'm praying for his recovery! Perhaps you can post some picts of his splint or chair. That would be great!
     
  6. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC. I doubt if your chick has a broken leg, but more likely a deformity from birth or from a vitamin deficiency in the parents. Splay leg and slipped tendon are common, but also riboflavin (vitamin B2) deficiency will cause them to walk on their hocks and have curled toes. First of all put chick vitamins in the water (these can be found in the chicken aisle at TSC) or give PolyVisol baby vitamins 2 drops by mouth daily. Curled toes need to be taped right away, the earlier the other problems are addressed the better the outcome. Here is an excellent link for dealing with these problems: https://sites.google.com/a/poultrypedia.com/poultrypedia/poultry-podiatry
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  7. Spidergravy

    Spidergravy New Egg

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    I will get vitamins in the morning. Thank you. I have made him a little chair sling to keep the weight off his legs which he's not particularly complaining about. I don't think he likes being in his own though. [​IMG]

    I really appreciate the advice. x
     

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