underweight chicken on wobbly legs

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Huehnerei, Oct 29, 2012.

  1. Huehnerei

    Huehnerei Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 28, 2012
    One of my chickens started grooming and itching a lot. When I inspected her and the other 2 I could not find anything. Neither did I find anything in their coop (I did the paper towel test - and used my flashlight)
    When I picked them up to check them, I noticed that they could use a little more weight - they seem to be very skinny. Especially the "Duck".
    She has always been skinny , even when I first got her -she looked more like a cross between a duck and a chicken.
    They were all on Scratch and Peck Layer feed (they are 23 weeks old, 2 are laying, Duck is not yet - all Rhode Island Reds)
    I noticed that they were only pecking out what they liked and kick out the rest of the food. I think they might not have gotten all their nutrition since they were selecting what to eat. So I went and got them "Half Moon Feeds" Layer Pellets - but they are turning their noses up and just eating a few kernels and then go off scratching in their run. Does anybody know how I can get them to eat their layer feed??

    But Back to duck: Yesterday I noticed that she was wobbly on her feet and kind of loosing her balance. So I took her in the house and tried to hand feed her. She took a few bites but seemed very week. I was afraid that I would loose her over night - but she was awake in the morning. (I had read every site I could find and figured - maybe I should have kept her on grower feed - since she is not laying yet (and seems to be behind the other two-smallish comb and skinny) or maybe she has worms (they do love to dig in the dirt - and as far as I know have never been wormed). So I went and got grower feed, electrolytes and Wazine (wormer) this afternoon. She really liked the electrolyte water and started eating a little bit of the grower feed on her own. After a couple hours she has eaten about 1/4 of her bowl and she seems more alert (still wobbly)

    I was thinking of worming them all tomorrow but after reading the instructions on the Wazine (it says not to give it to weak birds) I thought maybe I should wait a couple of days if Duck continues to eat more, to give her more strength before I do the worming???

    All of their droppings are normal, including ducks (hers where small, but she had a normal one today).

    So here are my questions: Could "Duck"s weakness/ underweight come from malnutrition and not eating all their food or is it more likely that the malnutrition and not wanting to eat well comes from worms???? Should I worm them????

    Why is Duck itching so much and there is nothing there???? What do I do about that?

    How do I get the others to eat their layer feed ???? (I know I have spoiled them before by giving them oatmeal and grass and vegetables and so on - I thought that would be good for them but now I know that they have to eat their feed first and then the can have something else).


    Does anybody have any ideas or suggestions? Please let me know.

    Thanks a bunch.
     
  2. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    What is the paper towel test?
     
  3. Huehnerei

    Huehnerei Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 28, 2012
    at night you're supposed to wipe a white paper towel under the roost ( the stick where the chickens sit on) to see if there are any mites. They come out at night from their hiding spots to feed on the chicken. (At least that is what I read in one of the threads - so I tried it - but my paper towel came up clean - no mites on it).
     
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Ah, okay... But that won't work for lice and they are very good at hiding, I dust them with poultry dust even if I cannot see any bugs. I also worm with Safeguard for goats. You should be able get both the dust and the wormer at tractor supply.

    Get yourself some Safeguard for goats, weigh your chickens on a digital kitchen scale and give wormer at the rate of .5cc/kg. Follow these instructions carefully and use 1cc syringe with proper dose. 3cc is too big for most chickens. PM me if you have more questions.
    Instructions: http://www.peafowl.org/ARTICLES/24/
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    Is she molting? They can lose quite a bit of weight when they molt. Worms would also cause them to lose weight.
     

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