|Sometimes a chick will hatch with a condition called Spraddle Leg. One or both legs splay
out to the side and the chick is unable to stand. I had a Black Copper Marans chick that
had a severe case. Both legs were affected. Here is how I helped him.
|First I made an orthopedic device. It was made from pieces of pipe cleaner and a piece of
elastic. I wrapped the pipe cleaner cuffs around his legs and the elastic held his legs
together but still allowed movement. I put this cuff on him and did not remove it for the
entire course of treatment (4 days).
|Next I got a water glass (actually plastic). I folded up a piece of paper towel and put it in
the bottom of the glass to make it more comfortable.
At night, I placed the chick in the glass. His legs were forced under his body and he had to
put weight on them. He did not like it one bit. I put the glass in the brooder near enough to
the heat source to keep him warm, but not directly under it (I did not want to cook him!) In
the morning I removed him from the glass and made sure he got food and water.
On the fourth morning I removed the orthopedic cuff. The little chick stood on his own! Then
another chick ran by him and he RAN! It was a miracle, so that is what I named him,
<- Here is Miracle, all grown up
If a chick has curled toes, it may be genetic but more often it is from being cramped in the
shell too long while hatching. In either case it is easy to fix if action is taken immediatly.
Take a small piece of pipe cleaner and bend into a V shape. Flatten out toes over the pipe
cleaner and tape in place with paper 1st aid tape. When it falls off in a day or 2 his foot
should be fine