Young Rooster With Leg Injury

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Priscilla Feathers, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. Priscilla Feathers

    Priscilla Feathers Out Of The Brooder

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    May 21, 2011
    Hello!

    We had a bad windstorm last night, so I placed all my chickens in their coop and locked them up. (Normally, they roost on top of the coop.) They have a tiered roost inside the coop, along with a platform where all the egg boxes are kept. When I checked them before I turned in for the night, the adult chickens had settled onto the tiered roost, while the younger "teenage" chickens (they are all fully feathered, but still small) were either on the ground, or up on the box platform. I don't recall where this young rooster was sleeping, but they all seemed fine.

    I got up this morning pretty early to turn them loose and they all poured out of the coop looking healthy and happy, except for the young rooster. He was lying on his side, back in a corner of the coop. He had a lot of mucus around his beak, with crusted over dirt, but his eyes are bright and he seems alert. I cleaned up his face and tried helping him to stand, but he fell over on his side and started pushing himself around with one leg. I tried standing him up on what seems to be the "good" leg, while I supported his weight, but he lets himself collapse even when you stand him on the good leg.

    The toes on the feet of both legs curl up in the roosting clutch when you push the leg close to his body, but the "bad" leg doesn't seem to get as tight of a clutch. I can't find any obvious breaks. Both feet appear to be equally warm. There is a tiny, fresh abrasion on the "bad" leg -- but it's really small, just a scrape, right above the joint above the foot. (Like where our ankle would be.) He doesn't react with any particular stress when I work my hand down either leg, no obvious sore spots. But he doesn't appear to be able to bear any weight on either leg, and the 'bad" leg, he doesn't even use to push himself around with. I'm also worried about him dripping mucus from his beak when I found him -- that always signaled pnemonia to me with other chickens that we've had that died. But his breathing seems fine, and he's not dripping anymore mucus.

    I put him in a sling to take the weight off his legs, and to keep him from flopping around. It seemed to relieve some of his stress, but he's not eating or drinking. Just hanging there, occasionally asleep and occasionally awake. He sometimes struggles, trying to get out of the sling, so he's lively enough. He was panting when I first put him into the sling, but he's stopped now and seems comfortable except when he suddenly takes it into his head that he wants out. (He's only partially tame -- comes when you call, but he doesn't want to be picked up and when he could walk, he would run away if you tried to touch him.) I have him in a box, in the house, and he has food and water.

    I guess I want to know if there is anything else I can do to help him out. Or if anyone knows what could be wrong with him. If he's not better by tomorrow I will probably take him to a vet, but I'm not sure if we have any in the area that know anything about chickens.
     
  2. Priscilla Feathers

    Priscilla Feathers Out Of The Brooder

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    May 21, 2011
    I took some advice from various posters and kept him in a sling all day. He accepted it pretty well, though he kept knocking over his water dish, darn rooster. I took him out of the sling last night so he could sleep more easily, and he was able to sit down on both legs, like a normal chicken (instead of flopping over on his side.)

    He was walking normally this morning, albeit, very slowly. I put him out in the backyard and will be keeping an eye on him, but so far, he is walking around, picking at the grass. He's not scratching and he's moving very slowly, so I think it must still hurt. He's also dragging his wing on the side where he had the bad leg yesterday. I'm not sure what that is all about, maybe a balance issue? Anyway, he seems to be better. I'm going to let him hang out outside for a few hours, then bring him back in to rest when it's hot this afternoon.

    Thanks for the emotional support!
     

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