Supporting a weak chick through the first night

doughouse

Songster
Apr 14, 2020
113
202
126
Boston, MA
Hi,
We just had three chicks arrive today after traveling for two days in the mail. Two of the chicks have been active and happy, but one arrived weak and clearly in need of some help. She's a black laced polish, easily the smallest chick of the bunch (the other two are larger breeds), and we've been keeping a close eye on her all day, helping her drink water with a drop of Nutri-Drench in it from time to time. We gave her some egg yolk as well, although she fell over into it and we had to gently clean her up with damp rag and a soft, clean toothbrush afterward. At times during the day she's really perked up, eating and drinking with her sisters and moving around the brooder with them, but other times during the day she wobbles and topples over, and its clear she's struggling.

So now it's 12:30 am, and although we're both quite exhausted my wife and I are still up, fretting about this chick. While the other two are sleeping normally, she's breathing more heavily with her wings spread out a bit. At one point one of the other chicks got up and walked directly over her to get to the waterer and she didn't even respond. Part of me feels like she's had a hard, stressful day and just needs to sleep hard, part of me wants to sit up all night with her, dipping her beak in water with Nutri-Drench every so often to make sure she has the energy to push through and rebound. Anyone have any ideas?

Other relevant info: the water in the waterer has a chicken vitamin/electrolyte mix in it. The feed is medicated. The hatchery sent "GroGel," which is a hydrating, nutritious gel, and she ate some when she first arrived. The brooder is heated with a heat lamp and the temp is around 95: sometimes it gets up to 100, sometimes it's down around 92 or 93. I'm assuming it fluctuates as the ambient temperature fluctuates.

Any help or advice would be appreciated!
 
May 28, 2020
212
234
106
I hope all goes well! FWIW one of the chicks I received via mail last week was extremely tired. 24 hours later and they became one of the peppiest ones in the group. Heat is good but also make sure they can move away from it, access to clean water and starter. You could try electrolytes in the water sold at local farm stores.
 

AngelzFyre

Songster
13 Years
Sep 18, 2007
807
12
230
Pell City, Alabama
Hi,
We just had three chicks arrive today after traveling for two days in the mail. Two of the chicks have been active and happy, but one arrived weak and clearly in need of some help. She's a black laced polish, easily the smallest chick of the bunch (the other two are larger breeds), and we've been keeping a close eye on her all day, helping her drink water with a drop of Nutri-Drench in it from time to time. We gave her some egg yolk as well, although she fell over into it and we had to gently clean her up with damp rag and a soft, clean toothbrush afterward. At times during the day she's really perked up, eating and drinking with her sisters and moving around the brooder with them, but other times during the day she wobbles and topples over, and its clear she's struggling.

So now it's 12:30 am, and although we're both quite exhausted my wife and I are still up, fretting about this chick. While the other two are sleeping normally, she's breathing more heavily with her wings spread out a bit. At one point one of the other chicks got up and walked directly over her to get to the waterer and she didn't even respond. Part of me feels like she's had a hard, stressful day and just needs to sleep hard, part of me wants to sit up all night with her, dipping her beak in water with Nutri-Drench every so often to make sure she has the energy to push through and rebound. Anyone have any ideas?

Other relevant info: the water in the waterer has a chicken vitamin/electrolyte mix in it. The feed is medicated. The hatchery sent "GroGel," which is a hydrating, nutritious gel, and she ate some when she first arrived. The brooder is heated with a heat lamp and the temp is around 95: sometimes it gets up to 100, sometimes it's down around 92 or 93. I'm assuming it fluctuates as the ambient temperature fluctuates.

Any help or advice would be appreciated!
I would continue keeping a close eye on her and keep giving the Nutri-Drench through the next day or so until she is keeping up with the rest of the chicks. If you have a way she can stay warm as the others and get to food and water, you could also put a divider in where they are and keep her and a buddy separate where the others can't trample or peck her.
I have also used a tube sock filled(and tied shut) with raw rice and put into the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes and lay in a circle and put them in it after making sure it's not too hot. Or you can put her against it, to keep her warmer. Some just get off to a slow start and need a bit of extra TLC. You should see her perk up a lot though the next day. You can also take a dropper and drip the Nutri-Drench along her beak to see if she will take more of it in that way. Don't force it inside her beak because she could aspirate.
Keep it as quiet in where they are for the first few days, and just the heat lamp on too will help her not be stressed, and to make sure the other chicks don't get startled and trample over her. Hope this helps!
 

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom