wobbly chicken

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by faegood, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. faegood

    faegood Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Efland, NC
    Good morning, good folks!

    One of our new chickens is having a hard time this morning. I would argue that she's lame on one leg, and my sweetheart thinks both legs might not be working right. She doesn't want to walk around, and a leg is splayed out to the side. Here's a brief rundown:

    She's 15 weeks old.
    Golden Comet.
    We bought her at a chicken swap, and don't know if she was vaccinated for Marek's disease.
    Vent is fine.
    Eyes are clear.
    She seems pretty alert.
    We checked over every bit of her feet and legs and they seem fine (but we soaked them in epsom salts anyway).
    No visible injury of any sort.
    She's pretty well socialized, and lets up pick her up and feel her all over.
    The other three chickens are out in the coop, pecking and drinking and peeping away.
    Yesterday she was totally fine.
    It's been very very cold her (20s and 30s) in North Carolina, but we've been changing out their water for new warm stuff every few hours, and they've seemed to be managing the cold fine.

    We brought her in to the bathtub and set her up with some litter and food and water. She seemed pretty uninterested in either, but then we got some water into her with a dropper, and offered her some whey, which she drank pretty enthusiastically, although she's pecking at food and not really picking it up. She did eat some handheld scratch.

    This is our first sick chicken, and so of course we want to try and fix her or at least help her be more comfortable. Any advice is gratefully received.
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    My Coop
    Do you have a picture of her leg being splayed? That's very unusual for a chicken her age.
     
  3. faegood

    faegood Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Efland, NC
    [​IMG]

    Well, of course she's all "I am not your trained monkey" and doesn't want to stand up for a picture, but you can see her leg kicked out to the side even though she's hunkered down. When she tries to stand, it goes out to the side at an angle. She can stand up pretty well, if she's motivated, but moving around makes her leg slide out from under her.
     
  4. faegood

    faegood Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Efland, NC
    We did thoroughly feel her up...doesn't seem to be anything broken or disengaged.

    And she did eat a good quarter cup of chicken chow made into a mash, plus drink some water. We're just perplexed.
     
  5. pwand

    pwand Chillin' With My Peeps

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    BC Canada
    Give her vitamins in water to see if that might help her. i use Pul-vite powdered vitamins. Sometimes the can lack vitamins. We had a goat when I was young and she was unable to get up, a vet came and I believe it was an injections of vitamins. It was long and she was standing and getting around. Here is a link to look at. http://www.hobbyfarms.com/livestock-and-pets/rickets-in-chickens.aspx.

    Hope she gets well.
     
  6. faegood

    faegood Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Efland, NC
    Day 3, and our Ruth is improved! It appears that she was injured rather than sick, perhaps because she keeps trying to fly down from the coop, and she's terrible at it.

    She's still in the bathtub, but is up on her feet about a quarter of the time, starting to scratch through the shavings for goodies, and stands up when I walk in. She's able to get to food and water on her own, but is still pretty unsteady and splayed out on her feet. Strangely, since I was insistent that we get pullets rather than chicks so I wouldn't have chickens in my bathtub, I'm actually enjoying having a chicken in the house (although I'll be glad when she can rejoin her sisters).
     
  7. faegood

    faegood Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Efland, NC
    After a full week of bathtub chickening, we returned the still-limping Ruth to the coop. So happy to report that she's now fully recovered, scratching, walking up and down the ladder, and acting just like a normal chicken.
    (I secretly miss having a bathtub chicken. She's good company.)
     

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