Update on "dying" chick from 4/21

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by kirkster5, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. kirkster5

    kirkster5 In the Brooder

    Apr 7, 2008
    O.K......here goes. I posted in utter panic on the 21'st about one of my (then 5 week old) RIR's who had an infected growth on her wing root and had developed some severe neurological complications. (only walking backwards,tucking head completey under body and floping over backwards, losing weight). I called for hours the next day and finally found a vet who would treat chickens. I explained what was wrong and he re-worked his entire schedule to get Reba in ASAP. Upon seeing her he asked is this chick a pet or just going to be used as meat. He asked this as he thought it was likely that she was not going to make it and wanted to know how "motivated(see also how much are you willing to spend to even try)" I was to try and save her. I explained that I'd had her now for 5 weeks, named her, and could not stand to just cull her without trying to save her.

    This vet spent the next 2 hours on the phone calling experts,taking cultures and comforting her(and me)
    The fear was that she had virural encephalitis and that there could be problems with all my girls. It was going to take 5 days to get the results so he took a gamble and said "my gut tells me that this is a bacterial infection that has just run amoke and settled in her brain....so let's bomb her with heavy duty antibacterials.
    3 oral medications squirted in her little mouth 2 times a day.

    Well, here is the news (finally) She has stopped all neurological based symptoms!! She is eating, drinking, growing,resisting medical procedures with great vigor, and the results came back.....No Virual encephalitis!! just a Staph infection, E-coli, and one other 'oli' that I cant quite remember. All being sucesfully treated with the medications(10 more days of treatment..yikes) and the prognosis is full recovery!!

    Cost $400 and counting for my $2.88 chick.

    I know that a lot of folks will think I'm crazy for going through all of this but, I just had to give her a fighting chance. And it looks like, with the incredible help of a willing vet, that we are going to save her!!
  2. chickbea

    chickbea Songster

    Jan 18, 2007
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    As someone who has also spent a great deal of money on my chickens, I can sympathize!
    I'm so glad she's doing better.
  3. ncgnance

    ncgnance Songster

    Aug 22, 2007
    Iredell County, NC
    Man, if that was MY pullet, she'd have to lay golden eggs for the rest of her life!:pJust kidding, I've spent a fortune on vet bills over the years. I'm glad she's doing well.
  4. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    It's great to hear she's doing better. But boy, $400 to take a culture and give you some antibiotics? Ouch!!!

    I have one I'm thinking of taking in to have a deformed leg amputated - wonder what that's gonna cost me?
  5. kirkster5

    kirkster5 In the Brooder

    Apr 7, 2008
    It is a lot of cash but this vet has called me every night for over a week to check on her progress. The biggest single cost was the check for viral encephalitis. It was required in this state due to the symptoms she was presenting and the possibility of it being a major outbreak problem with the hatchery(see the problem with McMurtery hatchery in this forum, which they handled as pro's). Really, I have never seen a vet dig in and do the work necessary as this guy did. I own 2 dogs, 2 cats, 3 horses, one donkey and all have had major health issues at some time or the other and the determination this vet had for what some would call "just a chicken" has been unmatched. I'd say that it cost him more in his time and effort than that bill could ever touch. Just to let you know of his passion for animals he just spent 6 hours in surgery saving the life of a red tail fox that was hit by a car for free. I think I have not only found a new vet but a new friend. Short of my compassionate wife I dont think I know anyone with a bigger heart for our furry/feathered friends than Dr. Little. Not once did he make fun of me for carring so deeply for "just a chicken"
  6. Nugget

    Nugget Songster

    Sep 2, 2007
    Kirkster, it sounds like you found a gem of a vet. I knew a physically handicapped man who spent over 4 grand on his sick dog. He said "We have money to pay for things that make us happy, and my dog makes me happy" (he worded it more eloquently, it wasn't materialistic sounding from him). I hope your chick makes you happy [​IMG]

    I went to similar extents over a poor wasting hen. I thought she may have brought something into my flock. Serum was sent off to test for every disease testable, radiographs, antibiotics, antifungals... despite it all I lost her. It was heartbreaking (after all the one-on-one attention she was very affectionate and bonded to me) but at least I know I tried [​IMG]

    There's no such thing as "just a ___"
  7. Redfeathers

    Redfeathers Songster

    Oct 11, 2007
    Gervais OR
    [​IMG] I'm so happy to hear the problem was solved and she is doing well. Good job!!

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