Two week old chick with a bad leg

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by staceyasmith, Feb 28, 2017.

  1. staceyasmith

    staceyasmith In the Brooder

    Feb 28, 2017
    I have been combing through this site (as well as others) trying to get help for my now 2 week old chick. She was a 2 day late hatch and we eventually had to help her as she peeped from the wrong end of the egg. I noticed the leg issues within her first 24 hours and at first thought it was splay leg but only 1 leg was affected. I put her in a homemade "brace" - a small rubber band passed through a small section of a straw - each loop of the band on each ankle which seemed to "help" get the leg under her. I also put rubber shelf liner on the bottom of the brooder with a little shavings on top so she would have good traction and started giving her vitamins. The brace was put on her at 2 days old and left on (taking it off and checking twice a day) for about 5 days. After day 3 there seemed to be no additional improvement so I took it off and left her on her own - she was just about a week old at this point. She seemed to be doing ok for the first few days - she walked with the bad leg more out to the side than the other but managed to get to her food and water - she could even pull the bad leg up and scratch herself so the joint bends fine. She will be 2 weeks old Thursday. Since yesterday morning I have noticed her laying down more and having more trouble getting around - she does manage getting from one side of the brooder to the other but she is using her wings more that anything now. She does still stand up on the good leg but struggles to move around. I examined her quite closely this morning and it now appears that her bad leg - specifically the thigh bone - is now developing an actual bow in it! It HURTS ME just to type that so I can't imagine how it is for her!! My question to the forum is this - do I attempt to brace it - wrap it to hopefully get it to straighten? How long do their bones stay "soft"? Is this is even possible to help her?? My husband thinks I should cull her but I want to do EVERYTHING possible to save her before I resort to that. She is a Svart Hona - we ordered hatching eggs but could only get 6 as that was all that was available and only 2 hatched (the post office LOST them in a storm for almost 24 hours so we aren't sure what they were exposed to!) SO we have one healthy chick (showing signs of being a little ROO already that we are likely NOT going to be able to keep!) and this little "girl". Any and all advise is welcome!!

  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Welcome to BYC and sorry about your chick. The vitamins may help, and if you could get Poultry Cell that contains vitamins and minerals, it may be better. But it sounds like she may have a leg bone deformity that usually means that she may never get around normally. Twisted leg, Tibial dyschondroplasia, and VarusValgus deformity are a few of those. Some are a result of mineral deficiencies, incubation difficulties, and heredity may be causes. It's hard to cull a little chick, but sometimes it is easier than when they get older and are suffering. Here are a couple of articles (click on the pictures to increase the size:)

    Here is a site for treating leg and foot problems:
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2017

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by