Week old chick screaming, twisting/untwisting neck, fluid leaking from mouth

healthguru

Hatching
May 27, 2020
6
12
5
I need help. I noticed a week old chick was weak. She was not able to stand totally up, stayed under the heat lamp, and was lethargic. I went to check on her and all the sudden she started screaming her body flipped over and her neck twisted. It was like someone just grabbed her neck and twisted it and her upper body. It was very traumatic to watch. I immediately went and researched. I thought maybe it was wry neck. I got some vitamins/minerals and went to get her. In the 1 minute it took to find that info her neck was untwisted and she was laying down. I brought her inside and held her in a towel to support her body and neck and was resting her on a heating mat. Then I got her to drink the vitamin water. Two more times she would scream and her body would twist and then it would relax. Then she started having the water come back out of her mouth. I don't know if the twisting out pressure on her crop and squeezed it out or if the crooked neck caused the water down the wrong tube. I tried the make sure to only out a drop in her beak and allow her to take it in as necessary. I feel so guilty because I worry that I caused her to aspirate. She sounded horrible when she would flap her wings and twist. she twisted the final time and I gently untwisted her neck. She had what seemed like so much liquid coming out. She shook for like 10 seconds and then died. Please tell me what happened. Or give advice. I can't seem to figure out if it was truly wry neck or not. I also don't know if what actually killed her was aspiration.
 
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ChiknGordonBlu

Chirping
Mar 31, 2020
84
85
53
Ramona, CA
I need help. I noticed a week old chick was weak. She was not able to stand totally up, stayed under the heat lamp, and was lethargic. I went to check on her and all the sudden she started screaming her body flipped over and her neck twisted. It was like someone just grabbed her neck and twisted it and her upper body. It was very traumatic to watch. I immediately went and researched. I thought maybe it was wry neck. I got some vitamins/minerals and went to get her. In the 1 minute it took to find that info her neck was untwisted and she was laying down. I brought her inside and held her in a towel to support her body and neck and was resting her on a heating mat. Then I got her to drink the vitamin water. Two more times she would scream and her body would twist and then it would relax. Then she started having the water come back out of her mouth. I don't know if the twisting out pressure on her crop and squeezed it out or if the crooked neck caused the water down the wrong tube. I tried the make sure to only out a drop in her beak and allow her to take it in as necessary. I feel so guilty because I worry that I caused her to aspirate. She sounded horrible when she would flap her wings and twist. she twisted the final time and I gently untwisted her neck. She had what seemed like so much liquid coming out. She shook for like 10 seconds and then died. Please tell me what happened. Or give advice. I can't seem to figure out if it was truly wry neck or not. I also don't know if what actually killed her was aspiration.
Hi, I don't have any answers for you and i'm really sorry about you chick. I'm tagging myself in to follow as I had some chicks die just last week, 4 total. It was unusual like yours so I am trying to find out all info and learn.
 

black_cat

I got a puppy!!!!
Premium Feather Member
May 21, 2020
17,755
54,778
1,086
Connecticut
I don't have answers, but am replying to bring the thread to the top again. Hopefully you're able to figure out what's wrong, and your chick is able to get better!
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,551
10,948
611
North Florida
I'm very, very sorry about your chick. :hugs
When chickens, or chicks, die, they sometimes go through 'death throes' and will twist, flop, have tremors, etc. and sometimes liquid will come from the mouth. They are nerve responses to the process of dying. It can be hard to watch. It very much sounds like what you saw, and probably nothing you did contributed. Once they are that far along, it's unlikely that they are going to recover. There are many things that could have caused the chick to be unwell, and some chicks just fail to thrive no matter how hard we try. They just get weaker and weaker and die. She could have been a 'failure to thrive case' and often the reason for that is unknown. There can be organ abnormalities etc that started with developement in the egg, that are not obvious externally. It's always sad, but it happens. If the rest of your chicks are doing well, then I would try not to worry too much.
 
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healthguru

Hatching
May 27, 2020
6
12
5
Th
I'm very, very sorry about your chick. :hugs
When chickens, or chicks, die, they sometimes go through 'death throes' and will twist, flop, have tremors, etc. and sometimes liquid will come from the mouth. They are nerve responses to the process of dying. It can be hard to watch. It very much sounds like what you saw, and probably nothing you did contributed. Once they are that far along, it's unlikely that they are going to recover. There are many things that could have caused the chick to be unwell, and some chicks just fail to thrive no matter how hard we try. They just get weaker and weaker and die. She could have been a 'failure to thrive case' and often the reason for that is unknown. There can be organ abnormalities etc that started with developement in the egg, that are not obvious externally. It's always sad, but it happens. If the rest of your chicks are doing well, then I would try not to worry too much.
Thank you. It does make me feel a little better. It just seemed to happen so suddenly. She was happy/healthy and then boom. I hated watching it but I was there for her at least.
 

healthguru

Hatching
May 27, 2020
6
12
5
Oh, Man. You were just as bad off last night as i was. I'm sorry. Poor thing. I hate not being able to help when somethingyone is suffering
I think that's the hardest part. These were replacement chicks after an abandoned dog got into our yard and murdered our whole flock of 6 week olds. I still don't know how the dog got into the coop. But we did build a bigger, heavier duty one just in case it was the coops failt. My poor kids are a little emotionally raw even though we all understand that this is nature.
 

Birdielee

Songster
Apr 8, 2020
841
1,239
216
North Plainfield, NJ USA
Oregonkat on april 17 2020 had a similar? Chick death. In the last post one of the young pullets from the batch died the same way. He opened it up and saw yellow liquid. Someone called it ascites. (Spelling?) ???
 
May 17, 2020
110
86
63
NW Washington
This is so sad, I'm so sorry for your loss. I had a very similar thing happen a few years back. Often times it's just SIDs except with baby chicks - it's pretty common. Most likely the shaking and fluid was the "death throes" as explained above. Before my chicks died, they shook and did something that seemed like throwing up.
 

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