To cull or not to cull???

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by kylieschooks, Oct 20, 2013.

  1. kylieschooks

    kylieschooks Out Of The Brooder

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    Please I need some advise!!!

    Got a pullet about 22 weeks old, she has got an injured foot/leg not sure what is wrong with it, no obvious damage. The leg is still warm but has no meat on it. It has been several weeks now and she is not improving!

    I have to lift her in and out of the coop every night (which I do not mind at all) also have to chuck food on floor away from others and seperate water.

    She stands in one place allday with foot curled up, tail down. She still eats and drinks. But people keep telling me cruel keeping her like that? She has never shown any kind of pain,

    I really don't know what to do, would really upset me if I had to kill her. If she ever starts laying I don't even think
    She will be able to get in coop to nest boxes to lay?!

    Any advise what to do?

    Ps. I have already taken her to vet when she has respiratory infection, can't keep taking her. Too expensive!

    Thanks :)
     
  2. DonnerSurvivor

    DonnerSurvivor Out Of The Brooder

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    Best advice I was ever given is when in doubt cull it out. If she starts laying and lays on the floor their is a good chance one of the hens will step on and break the eggs and possibly develop into egg eaters. Personally I would not keep a sick bird injured bird. Sorry.
     
  3. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Was the leg fractured,did you try to splint leg? No meat on leg,means no muscle which is a result of her not using leg. After this length of time any fracture she may have had,is to late to splint,bones will already have fused into place. Tail down and not moving to me indicates she is in pain or not feeling great. If you want to try and help her,start with soaking her leg in an epsom salt bath,this is good for sprains/sore muscles. Give her a baby aspirin 81mg or a reg 325mg aspirin for pain/swelling,dose is 25 mg per lb of body weight. Crush and place in water. Feel her leg, can you feel any area where there appears to be swelling or bone displacement? Bring her inside to monitor her,try the aspirin for pain,then try a splint,the purpose now is to make a brace,you want to see if she will use leg. She has not been using leg so now it has become stiff and muscle is deteriorating,do the epsom salt soak and some physical therapy on leg(gentle stretching)see if this starts to help. Is she eating/drinking normal,is her poop normal? Do not worry about nest boxes this is a very easy fix,just lower one for her to use. Feed/water bowls may have to lowered/moved to accommodate her.

    Note: not only is bringing her inside to monitor her,but to ensure she stays warm,if she cannot reach roosts she is in danger of getting cold as she will not have the body warmth of other chickens. This is very important,chickens cannot regulate their body temp if ill/injured.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2013
  4. Natalijaasbj

    Natalijaasbj Chillin' With My Peeps

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    IT also can be a sign of Marek's desease. You have to isolate her RIGHT NOW while you are dealing with this. We had an outbreak of Marek's here - I have already lost 4 birds. It is s highly contageous, and some people lost entire flock. I do not say YOUR bird has that, but most of my birds who died started limping - it was the first sign.
     
  5. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be that the Achilles tendon in that leg slipped out of the hock groove, so the muscle has wasted away with her not being able to use the leg right. There is some info on this that might be helpful on the Poultry Podiatry page on my site linked in my sig below.
     
  6. kylieschooks

    kylieschooks Out Of The Brooder

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    Exactly what I was thinking about the eggs!!! Thanks
     
  7. kylieschooks

    kylieschooks Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the advise. No I didn't splint because I didn't think it was serious at first, thought she would of got better, because there was no obvious sign of injury, no swelling, no blood and I have felt both legs over and over and can't feel any difference in them. I will try soaking her leg and see if that helps, but for some reason I don't think it's going to.

    Really don't know what I should do with her.
     
  8. kylieschooks

    kylieschooks Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh no, now this has got me really worried!!!!!! She's been like it for over a month now, how long do chickens have the disease before they die? Will my other hens already of caught it possibly???

    Now I'm thinking she's going to have to go :-((
     
  9. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I hope it's something less troubling than Marek's.
    I don't know enough about it to know how long you'd probably need to quarantine to have enough observations of symptoms to know more conclusively?
     
  10. cgmccary

    cgmccary Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She will not die before she starves.

    Marek's is everywhere so if on premises -- then was likely already on premises before you got chickens. It is also carried by wild birds -- everywhere. It is worldwide, cosmopolitan. The only way to prevent is to vaccinate as day old chicks or as soon as possible and keep them away from outside and dander until they are a few weeks old. There is no way to get rid of it. Bleach won't even kill the Marek's virus. So it does not matter if the bird comes into contact with the rest of the flock. Marek's is already there. The virus is long-lived-- 50 years or more. It is carried on dust & dander -- small particles on clothing, etc.

    Marek's is NOT carried in the egg so chicks hatch as virus free. The virus may be virulent and many birds in a flock will die over a relatively short time--or a very "weak" virus that infects few birds. You may have only one bird at a time--over a number of years, die after showing the symptoms. Sudden death may indicate Marek's--The only way to prove whether it is Marek's or something else is to send the bird to a lab or if you know how, you can do a necropsy to be sure. I sent mine to a lab and confirmed my suspicions. It's appearance in a flock is not a death-knell for them all. (Or it can be.)

    I have it on my place. It does not cause pain when a bird develops Marek's. Classic Marek's causes the bird to develop paralysis. First, in one leg, then both legs. The bird loses use of wings eventually and has to lay on its belly. Eventually, it will starve because it cannot get to food & water. Best to let them live as long as possible and put them down when they no longer have a life of any sort or now. They can recover but it is not common. I would only lose a bird or two a year. Pullets usually develop it at point of lay but any bird can develop Marek's at any age. Cockerels, I usually saw them get Marek's at about 7-11 months old. So I started breeding from older birds -- because they had been in contact with the virus but did not develop the disease -- Marek's resistant, I hope. I have not had Marek's in a couple of years now. The old birds had natural resistance I am assuming and has made my flock stronger.

    The other thing is to get some turkeys or get some turkey poop and put it in with your chicks. The vaccine is made from Turkey's Marek's which does not effect the turkey. Turkeys carry their Marek's version of the virus and raising chicks with turkeys around (or getting some turkey poop) works like the vaccine -- causing the young chick to develop immunity. The chicks get the virus in a small window in the young lives between hatching and about six months of age (I don't remember the exact extent of the window but it is short) -- they either develop the tumors or are resistant --- no way of knowing.

    There are different types of Marek's and some cause sudden death and don't look like the classic paralysis form. I think the vaccine works best against the classic Marek's. It takes on many forms. Vaccination or turkeys around can prevent it-- no need to vaccinate the birds you already have because all have come into contact so they will be effected or not?! Don't be alarmed as Marek's is everywhere and no cure for a bird -- it will recover or not. Also, vaccinated birds will NOT give the virus to unvaccinated birds. Hope I have not just further confused you.
     

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