Young turkey sudden lethargy

Okay, you should start by tubing just fluids, and I recommend Pedialyte. Can you get some of that?
Step 1:
Bring the bird inside and place in a warm room, 80-85 degrees is ideal (watch for signs of over-heating).

Step 2:
Weigh the bird

Step 3:
Once warmed, correct hydration, and this should not be done until the bird is warmed up. Tube warmed (102 degrees) Pedialyte or Gatorade at 14 ml per pound of body weight, wait 60-90 minutes and repeat. If no poop is produced by 3 hours after first tubing, repeat once more.

Step 4:
Once the bird is pooping you can start tubing warmed Kaytee Exact baby bird food or a non-lay crumble (lay crumble has too much calcium). Start by tubing 14 ml per pound of body weight and increase a little at each feeding. Do not exceed 23 ml per pound of body weight. Sick birds are tube fed 2-4 times a day.

"Tube feeding, also known as gavage feeding, is an essential part of avian supportive care. Sick birds are often presented with a history of anorexia, and glycogen stores may be depleted within hours in the granivore (including psitacine, passerine and galliform species) secondary to a relatively high metabolic rate. Another important indication for gavage feeding is a documented drop in body weight of 5% to 10%."
Thank you. I'll put her in our bathroom with the heater on when we're ready, I'm not sure how hot it gets but our house is only in the 70s. I'll get pedialyte too, we already have to go out to get the feeding formula so I'll just make another stop and grab some. I'll keep updates, she goes to the vet tomorrow as well.
Alright. Got home, that was an ordeal, had to go to 3 different stores to find Pedialyte.

We set her up in the bathroom with the heater on. I warmed the pedialyte up and we inserted the tube, I could see it go down her neck and my mom said she could feel the liquid way down near her crop, and she didn't aspirate so we're assuming we got the pedialyte down her. She weighed 4.1 still, so I put about 57ml in her. We'll get more down her in about an hour.

Just as a question, there's probably no way we'll still be up tonight in 3 hours. Is there anyway we could try to get some food down her before we have to go to bed, or should we just do the 2nd pedialyte dose and wait until tomorrow morning? If not I might see if I can keep myself awake long enough and then just have to wake my mom up to help hold her long enough to get food down her.

Oh, also, do I need to keep her in the warm room the entire time? Or should I bring her out between sessions? I am mildly nervous of it getting TOO hot in there, but I'm going to keep an eye on her.
Good job getting the fluids into her! :highfive: I know all too well how tempting it is to wanna give food, but trust me, fluids first is your best bet.
Oh, another question. I just got the 2nd fluids down her. She pooped about an hour after the first fluids, so when should I go ahead and do the food? Another 60-90 minutes?

Also thanks again, I really appreciate this!
First fluids of the day given, at this point she has stopped pooping anything solid and only pooped liquid. I think she depleted the rest of what she'd ate on her own yesterday. Still 4.1lbs. I think I am going to administer food next within an hour or so.

Edit: Vet visit, he was impressed with the tubing and said if I hadn't she might not be alive. He gave the same as Harper: .50 of sulfamed 40%, and .25 b-12. He also gave us tablets to crush up and give via feeding tube, SMZ 480mg 1/2 a tablet daily. He said her liver felt enlarged. Heres hoping I can get her through this. She weighs 4.8lbs
Last edited:
Hey casport! I I was just wondering, how often do I need to administer fluids daily? I know for food its 2-4 times but what should it be for fluids? Or should I need to be administering fluids still? Thanks!

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom