Weak Leg in Adult Chicken?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Texokie1, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. Texokie1

    Texokie1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about my 7 month old Jersey Giant hen. She has always had a "hitch in her getalong," but never very severe...just sort of gave to her left side. It has suddenly become very pronounced, with her taking a few steps, and then sitting down. It is clearly painful...at times she'll be walking/running just fine, and it seems to "give out" on her. (It kinda reminds me of when I tore cartilage in my knee back in high school.) It does appear to be an injury/joint issue, as opposed to an illness...she has bright eyes/comb, eats voraciously, stool is fine, and she filled her crop today free-ranging (even though she couldn't get around very well). The girls only free-range a couple of hours a day, the rest of the time they are in a tractor with a complete feed - Layena crumbles. They do not get scratch/corn...I will occasionally give them treats like millet, cut oats, wheat grain, fresh fruits/veggies...but in small amounts...so I am leaning against a vitamin deficiency. The only difference to their routine was that they didn't get out to free-range Mon/Tues/Wed of this week b/c I had to work long hours...I am wondering if maybe she has a bit of a bum joint/arthritis, and is "stowed-up" since she couldn't run/fly like usual. Any thoughts are appreciated!
     
  2. Texokie1

    Texokie1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, and a couple more things: I checked for sores on her foot/bumble foot...nothing. I felt around the leg, and she didn't pull away like it was painful...and didn't *seem* swollen
     
  3. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Can you take her to get an xray?
     
  4. Texokie1

    Texokie1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not sure. I've tried talking to my vet about chickens in the past (prior to getting them-what vaccines did she recommend, illnesses/regional problems to be wary about) and she wasn't terribly helpful. Although the clinic is supposed to handle any/all livestock, they don't have an avian expert. They might be able to take the x-ray...but I am afraid I would be stuck trying to run her all the way into Nashville for treatment (and since Mica hasn't traveled in the past, I'm not sure how well she would handle the stress of the trip). I might try the local co-op for ideas in the morning...or the local ag extension agency...honestly, they seem much more knowledgeable. (At least they were when I was doing research before getting the girls.) The way she can walk on it sometimes (with little difficulty) and then it just gives makes me think tendon/ligament/joint issue...just don't know...and unfortunately, I can't afford some of the fancier techniques (MRI/cat scan/etc) that might be required for diagnosing more complex joint issues.
     
  5. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    I know local vets don't necessarily treat chickens, but any ole vet should be able to take an xray. And I would also try calling a large animal vet (horses) because they travel with an xray machine and if they can take pics of horses, a bird can't be too difficult. I would be a real nag to someone!!!
     
  6. Texokie1

    Texokie1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Reviving this thread because its bbbbaaaa^aaaccck. The leg issue resolved itself last fall (about a week after the last post), and she was fine all through the winter/spring. Walking completely normally, not giving in any way, and she lost her "hitch" that she had when she was younger. I just thought she kinda grew into herself, as it were. Then, randomly, early this week she started walking with this stiff legged gait (stretching the same leg way out in front of her). No distubances lately, no accidents that I am aware of/could see when I examined her, etc. - BUT she appears to be getting a little broody. Every time I've checked (regardless of time of day), she has been in the nest box on eggs (one of her's and a few of the others). When I turn the girls out to free-range, I kick her out of the nest box, and she forages pretty well...then when her crop is full, she goes back to the coop and "whines" (best I can describe it) until I place her BACK in the coop so she can sit in the nest box (whether eggs are there or not). Oddly enough, she's not losing weight (maybe b/c of lack of activity...not expending too much energy). I'm wondering if she might have some kind of arthritis/similar condition and not getting up/walking/stretching is causing it to flare-up?
     
  7. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

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    Maybe she's just odd [​IMG]
    She may be sitting too much. Who knows. You may be right about the arthritis.
     
  8. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've never heard of periodic symptoms like that--very unusual! I'm glad it has cleared up pretty well for long periods of time & hope it will again soon.
     
  9. Texokie1

    Texokie1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks y'all. Just so strange...she'll be fine for months-and-months, and then BAM. If it had happened a fews ago, it would have made more sense (had a dog attempt to get into the tractor and about scared the girls half to death...I could see her having re-injured it/aggrevated it then). I guess I'll just keep an eye on her, and see if it gets worse. I'll have the vet out for our horses' yearly Coggins/vaccinations in a couple weeks...may try and get her to see if she has any ideas then (although chickens are not her strong suit).
     
  10. Betsy57

    Betsy57 Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    I had a 2 year old Black Copper Maran 2 weeks ago suddenly unable to stand. I put her down. Now I have my favorite Little Gray (1 yr. old) stumbling and weak, sitting down a lot. These didn't get vaccinated for Marek's as I got them from a friend, not a hatchery. I hope I don't have to put Little Gray down too!!! I thought Marek's attacked chicks but maybe mine is that. Not sure about yours. I read somewhere about weakness if given too much calcium. Ever hear of that?
     

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