Wyandotte Hen Suddenly Off-Balance,"Tipsy", Throws Head Back

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by K-12 Chickens, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just this morning, I saw that my Easter Egger rooster (who has a great dislike for this hen ever since she was aggressive to him when he was integrating into the flock), had trapped her in a thicket and was repeatedly pecking her on the head. I ran outside, intervened and brought the hen inside. As of now, she crouches rather than standing completely upright and occasionally throws her head back and/or falls over partly. She can eat and drink. Yesterday she was completely normal and able to fly up onto the covered run. I'm confused by this sudden wobbliness; could it have been caused by the attack or is it something else?
    I can add a photo if needed.
     
  2. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Is she vaccinated for Marek's?

    -Kathy
     
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    She may have a head injury from the sound of her throwing her head back. There is a condition called wry neck or crook neck where the neck becomes twisted forward up, or to the side. Keep her isolated for a while with food and water to keep her quiet. Stimulation and noise can make this worse. Vitamins in her water or PolyVisol without iron baby vitamins 2-3 drops daily may help. Here is some info on wry neck: http://oureggbasket.blogspot.com/2013/04/wry-neck-or-crook-neck-understanding-it.html
     
  4. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't think this is Marek's. I'll look into wry neck and compare it to my hen.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2013
  5. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    Last edited: Nov 18, 2013
  6. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree, Marek's Disease is a possibility, but the way this came on so suddenly, I can almost rule it out.

    Well, I observed Jenny (the hen) and I'm really thinking it's wry neck. She doesn't appear to like extending her neck and when she pecks, her head and neck fall to the side slightly, as if she can't keep her neck straight. She has calmed down now and can stand up fine, despite her neck. I started her on vitamins and will keep her inside.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

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    I wouldn't have mentioned it unless I had actually seen one sort of like your hen... Not that long ago I found a hen getting "raped" by a duck. She was normal the day before, wobbly the day I found her and within a few days completely unable to use both her legs, but her neck is fine. Guess my point is that they can look normal one day and be paralyzed soon after. Fingers crossed for you, hope it's just a minor, treatable problem. :D

    -Kathy
     
  8. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    There are several causes of wry neck--head injury, vitamin deficiency, and a disease such as Mareks, Newcastles, or equine encephalomyelitis. It probably is a head injury, but sometimes another chicken will try to cull or get rid of a sick chicken, so there is also the possibility that she could be ill. Chickens have a sense of one being weak or ill.
     
  9. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jenny has always been afraid of my EE rooster, but is not low in the pecking order by any means. The combination of stress and now an attack has probably not helped this (she is also in the process of growing back molted feathers). She has had no symptoms of being ill, as far as I can tell.
     
  10. K-12 Chickens

    K-12 Chickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I hope it's a simple case too! [​IMG]
     

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