Barred Plymouth rock lethargic

by E Richards


Barred Plymouth rock lethargic: We bought 4 chicks 3 days ago. One of the barred rock had a hard time walking, has a larger abdomen and is more lethargic then the rest.

Today she is not really moving around at all. What do we do? The feed store where we bought them is closed. her eyes are mostly closed.

I don't think she can walk anymore. She is still chirping but that is bout it. help....

With such a young chick I would suspect constipation. You didn’t mention any droppings. A nice warm bath given safely, holding onto her, may relax muscles to release droppings.

You may need to massage the abdomen gently and clean the rear. Sometimes their little butts are glued shut with droppings and they can’t go.

This toxic build up will make them very sick and their little intestines loading with poo is painful and life threatening. (If this does break things loose be ready for a small explosion.)

If the bath doesn’t help, try a few drops of cooking oil as a laxative, or mix a pinch of Epsom salts in a teaspoon and give the chick a few drops.

Keep the chick warm, make sure her vent is clear and she can go. You might try a little oil on her vent and gently massage.

If she has been like this for three days, she is in trouble as you have guessed. This is the only think I can imagine would make a little chick look and act like this.

Sometimes they can eat some of the bedding, especially if granulated corn cob bedding. They really can’t digest this and it will cause a blockage.

Other small bedding products, like crushed walnut shell can do the same thing. The best is good sized wood shavings, straw is OK, too, but nothing that they could swallow easily and not digest.

You might want to give her some fruit juice, Pedialyte, or sugar water, if she is swallowing on her own.

Being in this condition, she is probably dehydrated and exhausted. Those liquids may perk her up, and give her some strength. Encourage moistened food when she is alert. Hope this helps.

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