Chick with a Blister

by Kim


Chicken with a blister: I got 2 chicks from the primary school yesterday. Even though I checked them over I missed the one with a blister just above its wing, on it's neck.

It isn't hot,it is soft, doesn't look pussy and otherwise the chick is in good health.

It just looks like a regular blister. I have been informed the blister was present up to 2 days ago. Should I be worried?

I have another chick with it and it has no blister. They are both alert and eating/drinking well. The chick has no other issues than the blister.

No need to worry, but being observant is the first line of defense against more serious problems.

The most likely cause of a "blister" on a chick would be a burn from the brooder lamp or heater.

If the chick doesn't seem bothered by it, I would suggest some aloe vera to treat the burn and relieve any discomfort and leave it be.

If the blister grows or you notice others, you may be dealing with a disease.

Another possibility is that this is an accumulation of gas in the chick's crop. A little is not much for concern, but it could mean the chick isn't drinking enough water and feed is sitting in the crop too long, becoming sour, which can lead to food poisoning.

I would take a pinch of baking soda in a teaspoon of water and give it to the chick, either with a eye dropper of just dipping the tip of its beak in the spoon and allowing it to swallow.

Feel the crop, at the bottom right (its right) of the neck. If the contents feel more solid that mushy, gently massage the fluids you just gave into the mass of feed in the crop.

I would wait an hour and see if this "blister" has gone down. If not, and the contents of the crop are not mushy, offer it as much water as you can get it to take, and repeat the massage of crop.

I would withhold food until the crop is empty and then offer soaked feed to make sure this chick doesn't get blocked up again.

I would watch for any signs of infection or the other chick picking at this blister, if it is a fluid filled blister.

Chickens young and old are very curious and have excellent eye sight. When noticing something out of the ordinary, they peck at it and can often cause irritation and may harass another chicken with a wound of some sort.

If this occurs, you may need to separate them until the blister heals completely.

It would be good to research the breed of these chicks. Often the chicks mass produced and sold to schools are Cornish Cross.

This is a breed that grows very fast, designed to live only 6 - 8 weeks. The breed was created for butchering young, and if allowed to live too long, they develop serious problems.

The main one is that their bodies become too heavy for their legs and feet, making walking, sometimes, impossible. They often have digestive problems resulting in chronic diarrhea.

They can be very tame, when handled a lot, but sadly, due to the purpose of their breeding, are a poor prospect as a pet, and even if female, may be unable to lay eggs.

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by: Anonymous

My most common thought is that it could have been a breast blister. I have seen breast blisters on several cases, this comes with excessive or lengthy contact with a surface (ground, feces, etc.).

It can be infectious (bacterial) or non-infectious, most often it is not contagious. A lot of the times these regress if the environment changes or if antibiotics are given (in infectious cases).

Most often it is related to heavy birds, either broilers or turkeys.

thank you
by: Anonymous

Thank you for the advice. I've watched the blister and it has gone down completely. It was very interesting what you said about the chicks often given to the schools. I was unaware of this. I'll keep a close eye on the 2 I have and hope they are not of that breed.

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