I have always enjoyed keeping chickens, watching them peck around and strut their stuff. But, recently, my favorite hen started exhibiting signs of wry neck. If you’re not familiar with wry neck, it’s a condition that affects chickens, causing their necks to twist and their heads to be upside down. It’s a distressing sight to see, and it’s even more distressing when it happens to one of your own chickens.
As soon as I noticed the symptoms, I did some research to find out what I could do to help her. I discovered that a lack of vitamin E and selenium in a chicken’s diet can lead to wry neck, and that supplementing with these nutrients can help them recover. However, it can take anywhere from a few days to a few months for the chicken to fully recover.
My hen was in a bad way when I found her on Friday night. She couldn’t stand, and her neck was twisted around, with her head upside down. I knew I had to act fast if I wanted to save her. So, I started her on nutri drench and rooster booster vitamin B12 plus vitamin K. These supplements are packed with essential nutrients that can help her recover.
I also found a vitamin E with selenium supplement on Amazon, and I got her started on that right away. I knew that it was essential to get these nutrients into her system as soon as possible if I wanted to help her. However, my hen couldn’t/wouldn’t eat, so I had to find other ways to get the nutrients into her.
I started giving her liquids and egg yolk, which she seemed to be able to swallow without too much difficulty. I knew that the wry neck itself wouldn’t kill her, but the starvation could, so I made sure to give her as much nutrition as possible.
It’s been a few days since I started treating her, and I’ve seen some improvement in her condition. She’s still not able to stand, but her neck seems to be less twisted than before. I’m hopeful that with time and continued treatment, she’ll make a full recovery.
If you’re dealing with a chicken with wry neck, here are some tips that might help:
- Supplement with Vitamin E and Selenium: As I mentioned earlier, a lack of vitamin E and selenium can lead to wry neck. You can find supplements at your local pet store or online.
- Provide Nutritious Food: Even if your chicken isn’t eating, it’s essential to get as much nutrition into them as possible. You can try giving them liquids, egg yolk, or other high-nutrient foods.
- Keep Your Chicken Comfortable: Make sure your chicken has a warm, dry place to rest. Wry neck can be stressful for them, so keeping them comfortable can help.
- Be Patient: It can take time for a chicken to recover from wry neck. Some recover quickly, while others may take months. Be patient and keep up with the treatment.
What is Wry Neck?
Wry neck is a condition that affects chickens, causing their necks to twist and their heads to be upside down. The condition is also known as crookneck or stargazing. Wry neck is not a disease in itself but is a symptom of an underlying condition.
Signs of Wry Neck
The most obvious sign of wry neck is the twisted neck and upside-down head. However, there are other signs that you can look for, including:
- Loss of balance and coordination
- Difficulty standing or walking
- Lack of appetite or difficulty eating
- Head tremors
- Slow or irregular movements
Causes of Wry Neck
There are several causes of wry neck in chickens, including:
- Vitamin Deficiencies: A lack of vitamin E and selenium in a chicken’s diet can lead to wry neck. Vitamin E is essential for healthy muscle and nerve function, while selenium helps to prevent cell damage.
- Injuries or Trauma: Chickens can sustain injuries or trauma that cause wry neck. A sudden fall or collision can cause damage to the neck, resulting in wry neck.
- Infections or Diseases: Some infections or diseases can cause wry neck. For example, botulism is a bacterial infection that can cause paralysis and wry neck in chickens.
- Genetics: Some chicken breeds are more prone to wry neck than others. Bantam chickens, for example, are more likely to develop the condition than larger breeds.
Treating Wry Neck
If you suspect that your chicken has wry neck, it’s essential to act fast. As I mentioned earlier, a lack of vitamin E and selenium can lead to wry neck, so supplementing with these nutrients is a good place to start. You can find supplements at your local pet store or online.
It’s also essential to provide your chicken with nutritious food, even if they’re not eating. You can try giving them liquids, egg yolk, or other high-nutrient foods. Keeping your chicken comfortable is also important. Make sure they have a warm, dry place to rest.
If your chicken’s condition does not improve, you should consult a veterinarian. They may be able to provide additional treatment or medication to help your chicken recover.
Wry neck is a distressing condition that can affect chickens of all breeds and ages. It’s essential to know the signs and causes of the condition so that you can act quickly if you suspect your chicken has a wry neck. By supplementing with vitamin E and selenium, providing nutritious food, keeping your chicken comfortable, and being patient, you can give your chicken the best chance of making a full recovery. Don’t give up hope – miracles can happen, and your hen may surprise you with her resilience.