Young limping rooster - please help!!

Seed223

Chirping
Jul 2, 2020
95
80
81
Central Kentucky
Hoping to get some advice for our little roo (about 3 months old - he’s the blue buff Orpington). He has had this limp for a while - I took him to the vet about 3 weeks ago and she could not say for sure what was causing this. She mentioned that it could be neurological but time would tell (she did note that there was a slight difference in temperature between both of his feet). She gave us some Metacam which I stopped using but maybe I should restart it? After doing some research I found that it could be a vitamin deficiency. I have been supplementing with nutridrench (in the water) and have changed their feed to one that is fortified with vitamins. All of our babies are very close to being ready to merge into our existing flock but I am concerned about moving this guy in with them. I purchased rooster booster which I started adding to the feed this weekend. I’m wondering if I should give him some nutridrench directly into his mouth without diluting it? It seems as though the vitamins are helping but I am not entirely sure how long it takes for the effects to be seen. When he tries to run and keep up with the group he can’t - he limps worse and then kind of hobbles over to them. He is the sweetest baby ever and is eating and drinking. Does anyone have any advice on whether it would be ok to move him along with everyone else into our existing flock? (They all stay in our house with us as of right now). Also should I give him some straight nutridrench? You can see his limp in the video and I attached a picture of how he has been sleeping. I hate to ask this as well but is this a situation where you would put him down? Thanks in advance!

Video link:
 

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1muttsfan

Up Northerner
Mar 26, 2011
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Upper Peninsula Michigan
Do not give the Nutridrench orally, let him drink it as he feels he needs to. You already changed to a supplemented diet - what were you feeding before?

While it could be a neurological issue, it looks more like a painful limp to me. You could continue with the Metacam. I would also keep him confined to reduce strain on the affected joint. Sometimes when young birds injure joint tissue it can lead to permanent lameness, but it is certainly possible that with rest and good diet he could recover. If it is neurological it will likely get worse despite any treatment.

You could give him another young bird, ideally a quiet one, as a companion while he is separated.
 

Seed223

Chirping
Jul 2, 2020
95
80
81
Central Kentucky
Do not give the Nutridrench orally, let him drink it as he feels he needs to. You already changed to a supplemented diet - what were you feeding before?

While it could be a neurological issue, it looks more like a painful limp to me. You could continue with the Metacam. I would also keep him confined to reduce strain on the affected joint. Sometimes when young birds injure joint tissue it can lead to permanent lameness, but it is certainly possible that with rest and good diet he could recover. If it is neurological it will likely get worse despite any treatment.

You could give him another young bird, ideally a quiet one, as a companion while he is separated.
Thank you for the info! I will restart the Metacam tonight. We were feeding the Purina Medicated Starter feed before and have now switched to the Nutrena Naturewise Starter/Grower. We have the Scratch and Peck feed for a while in between but it just got too expensive for us to keep up with.

Does it seem odd that he has been doing this for close to a month now? He did seem to get better for a while... Is there a feed you would recommend we give him while he is healing? I’ve also started giving him a hard boiled egg which he usually eats about half of.

I will move one of our other chickens in with him. We have another rooster his age - they never seem to fight with each other. Would it be ok to put them together and then add them into the flock of hens at the same time once he heals?

Thank you again for your help!!
 

1muttsfan

Up Northerner
Mar 26, 2011
21,461
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Upper Peninsula Michigan
I would probably just give him a quieter young hen as a companion, boys tend to tussle and if he shows any sign of infirmity another roo may pick on him. How many roosters do you have?

The food he is on is fine, and he should not have any nutritional deficiencies.

If that leg was injured badly enough he may have a permanent lameness, and may be prone to reinjuring it, especially if being chased or picked on by other males. Does the vet you took him to work on birds? After this much time an X-ray may be helpful.
 

Seed223

Chirping
Jul 2, 2020
95
80
81
Central Kentucky
I would probably just give him a quieter young hen as a companion, boys tend to tussle and if he shows any sign of infirmity another roo may pick on him. How many roosters do you have?

The food he is on is fine, and he should not have any nutritional deficiencies.

If that leg was injured badly enough he may have a permanent lameness, and may be prone to reinjuring it, especially if being chased or picked on by other males. Does the vet you took him to work on birds? After this much time an X-ray may be helpful.
We just have the two roos (hatched together). Our other roo is extremely laid back so far and the two have never really fought or one upped each other).

The vet we took him to is an avian vet and sees chickens frequently from what I understand. I am going to call her again tomorrow and request and X-ray and appt. I’m starting to think we may need to put him down even though he seems fine in every other way.... Have you ever heard of anyone keeping an indoor rooster as a pet? I feel like he wouldn’t be very happy if we tried that (assuming he doesn’t improve). 😔
 

1muttsfan

Up Northerner
Mar 26, 2011
21,461
8,482
697
Upper Peninsula Michigan
You can find quite a few references to people keeping chickens, both hens and roosters, as indoor pets. There are even chicken diapers that you can make so that they don't poop all over.

I would say, though, if his lameness does not resolve, that he's going to have a difficult time getting around as an adult. Orps are big birds.
 

Seed223

Chirping
Jul 2, 2020
95
80
81
Central Kentucky
Thank you so much. I am really hoping he resolves. Taking him in to get X-rays at your advice. Thank you so much again, never thought I could get so attached to a chicken ❤
 

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