Thinking about amputating chicks leg... yes or no...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by aria122, Feb 23, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. aria122

    aria122 Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 2, 2011
    Davis, CA
    Hello All,

    My chicks hatched last week. (My 2 year old played with the thermostat on the incubator one day when I was at school [​IMG] and I only got 5 chicks out of 40 to hatch. Four of them are VERY healthy. One has a hurt leg..

    His hurt leg looks just like the one in this post from a couple years back.

    I tried splinting the first two days with a tiith pick, then I tried with a bandaid for three days. Both seem to bother the chick more than help.
    I think the leg hurts him cause he doesn't like me to touch it and yelps when he steps on it by accident.

    Aside from his leg, this chick is very healthy; he has nice feather growth, friendly character, perky behavior. He hops around on one foot and won't let the other one touch the ground. The other chicks don't bother him.

    So.. i've been thinking about amputating his leg. I have coagulating powder to stop the bleeding. I know they can bleed to death very easily.

    When I was little one of my sisters ran over the foot of a 2 week old chick with her tricycle (it was an accident) the chick lost most of its foot and went on to live a good 5 years as a back yard layer.

    What are your thoughts?
    Leave it be, splint again, amputate, cull?
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2011
  2. NoseyChickens

    NoseyChickens Feathers On The Ground

    Aug 3, 2009
    Southern California
    I would cull. I had a chick that had really bad leg problems at hatch. I tired everything, nothing worked. I let her live and she was never right. Her growth was stunted, she could never walk well. Soon enough it started to really interfere with her quaility of life. She could not get around well enough to eat and drink properly, she just could not function. I regret not culling her as a chick. I ended up having to do it later on and her health was rapidly declining. it wasn't fair of me to make her live through that.
  3. aria122

    aria122 Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 2, 2011
    Davis, CA
    Thanks. Will note.
    : )
  4. newlyweds

    newlyweds Pearl of the Prairie

    Mar 12, 2010
    Southeast Texas
    I would leave it be and see how it fairs, if she gets around fine with the one leg, and is eating and drinking.

    I would worry more about amputating it and infection and/or bleeding out. Hopefully someone with a similar issue will post.
  5. LoveHuevos

    LoveHuevos Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 24, 2011
    Southern California
    We accidentally got our young chick's leg stuck while taking her out of her cage. I think this happened before all of her feathers came in. We didn't know what to do. We wondered if she'd be okay or if we'd have to get rid of her. She was eating and drinking and getting around fine. Her leg was bent right around the same place as your chick's. Well, she's about a year old and she's doing just fine. I've seen her in the nest a couple of times so we think she's laying eggs. When I go out to give them snacks, "Peggy" [​IMG] is always the first to get there. She hops around really fast and doesn't let the other chickens intimidate her.
    Good luck!
  6. Kavellion

    Kavellion Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 31, 2011
    Drummond, OK
    people that are hurt dont get culled should an animal? could still have a happy life just saying.
  7. tnchickenut

    tnchickenut It's all about the Dels!

    Jan 24, 2010
    Englewood, TN
    I'm sorry. I hardly ever post anymore but thought I would share my experience.

    I hatch and brood alot compared to the average BYCer and I have seen my fair share of leg issues in chicks. Never (with the exception of splayed leg... which is very easy to fix (and avoid)) has it come out good in the end. It is much more humane to cull it as quickly and humanely as possible for you.
    I have had broken legs I tried to brace and mend only to have a bigger chick that I still had to put down. They do "alright" and "eat well" for so long and then they just get so big it is too hard for them to manage anymore. I have had deformed legs that I would try to brace... once tried to work with the chicken because it could kinda get around. Again... it works when they are onces... but then they become pounds.

    I'm sorry, but the previous poster who said humans don't get culled when they have issues like that is not being rational. It is far worse for that chicken to suffer laying in it's own poo and struggling to get food and water... not to mention never being able to be out and scratch and dust bathe in the sun like a normal happy chicken. Humans get crutches, wheelchairs, braces, fake limbs.... chickens don't... and if you can get one on a chicken and get it to stay on a chicken...then you should be a millionare because I'm sure there is a market for it.

    I'm a animal lover and advocate against animal cruelty. I think if you can get a vet to surgically remove the leg, then go for it... if not... you could hurt it, you could kill it by it bleeding out, you could also get a nasty infection set it and it die a horrible death anyways.

    All that said, it's your chicken. I'm sure you will do what you think is best. Good luck to you and the little guy/gal.

    ETA: Just checked out the other thread... definately broken if it is turned weird and has the red or even purple swollen spot. That is where the break is. Unfortunately, at that young age... if you don't catch it within 24 hours or so it has started to set that way. Good luck again.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2011
  8. Egg Rookie 2010

    Egg Rookie 2010 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 21, 2010
    North Idaho
  9. 7L Farm

    7L Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 22, 2010
    Anderson, Texas
  10. SpringChickens

    SpringChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 1, 2009
    College Station, Tx
    I agree, you should cull. I actually had one that hatched like that, so I think it was a temperature deficiency (or something similar) and I kept it alive for a while. It gradually stopped growing and thriving and seemed to be suffering, so I put it down.

    Good luck with your decision, whatever that may be.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by