Why Does My Silkie Keep Falling Over? A Veterinarian Is Answer Your Question!

Silkie chickens mostly enjoy a healthy life as they are resistant to many diseases. It also can adapt to various environmental conditions including heat and cold. but the matter does not always proceed at one pace, you may find them sometimes suffering from symptoms such as falling over and inability to balance.

For sure It is unpleasant to see one of the fluffy and friendly Silkie chickens falling down or struggling to move. Although it may seem simple, it may be a sign of a serious illness, and it may not be of a high degree of danger as well. Chicken falling results from several reasons that are very diverse from simple to serious and deadly.

In this article, we’ve conducted our research to provide you with some important information on the causes of chicken falling over to be aware of, and to give you a general idea of ​​the diseases and how to deal with it.

We’re going to explain more about the causes of chicken fall and how to overcome them. However, there is an important point that you need to keep in mind: The ideal action to be taken when any signs of illness appear in your flock is to call the veterinarian so that the chickens are examined and treated appropriately.

Why Does My Silkie Keep Falling Over?

White Silkie Chicken

There are many different reasons why chickens fall over, the most important and common of which are the following:

  1. Incomplete Growth.
  2. Vitamin Deficiency.
  3. Bumblefoot.
  4. Botulism.
  5. Marek’s Disease.
  6. Distortion.

1. Incomplete Growth

If you have young clumsy chicks that keep falling over. then this may not be a sign of disease or something disturbing. but rather they are still small and they can still develop and learn more about their bodies and how to deal with the surrounding environment to be able to walk properly and keep their balance.

Therefore, try to pave the way for her and not put her in a very crowded place. as crowding makes her hurry and struggle to reach water and food, and therefore she will not be able to improve her steps and balance.

2. Vitamin Deficiency 

Some people may be surprised when they know that the lack of vitamins causes health problems in chickens, But this is the truth. Chickens, just like humans, need a healthy and balanced diet and suitable ventilation and temperature conditions to be healthy.

In addition, protein and calcium are two essential elements for chickens. Vitamins are also of great importance in their development and growth. Vitamin deficiency leads to walking

Difficulty and improperly standing and imbalance. Among the most important vitamins directly related to Silkie falling over are riboflavin (Vitamin B2)and thiamine (vitamin B1).

Riboflavin Deficiency

A deficiency of riboflavin affects the balance of the chicken and causes the chicken to fall and have difficulty walking. Symptoms of riboflavin deficiency are most commonly seen in younger chicks and chickens. Chicken falling is accompanied by other symptoms, the most famous of which is curling fingers.

Deficiency Of Thiamine Vitamin B1

Vitamin B1 deficiency leads to leg weakness, often accompanied by pain. you may notice that the chickens lie down most of the time. If not diagnosed and treated, the condition may eventually deteriorate into leg paralysis. 

3. Bumblefoot

An inflammatory condition affects the bottom of the feet of Silkie chickens and it is a common condition in most types of chicken.

It is accompanied by a number of symptoms, the most obvious of which is the presence of a hard abscess filled with pus at the bottom of the foot, covered with a brown or black crust. 

Severe pain in the leg that resulted from the pus. With the increase in the severity of the infection and ignoring its treatment. The pain also increases to the point that the chickens refuse to walk and lie down or walk lame only when necessary.

There are several factors that stimulate the development of a bumblefoot, including skin wounds, as foot injuries, even if they are minor wounds, give an opportunity for bacteria to enter the tissues of the foot.

In addition, the chickens not receiving a balanced diet leads to dryness and peeling of the skin, and thus facilitates the invasion of bacteria.

Exposure of Silkie chickens to intimidation leads to their injury to the buzzing foot as well. Silkie is one of the peaceful birds located at the bottom of the pecking order, which makes them more likely to be chased by aggressive birds, and thus increases their level of activity, stagnation, and pressure on the feet in an attempt to escape from the aggressors.

The degree of redness, swelling, and pain varies according to the stage of the disease. If it is detected in the early stages, it is easy to treat with antibiotics and changes in the environmental factors that caused this condition. But in the case of infection accompanied by ulcers and pus, the chicken feet usually need surgical debridement.

4. Botulism

Botulism in chickens leads to leg lameness and chicken falling. This condition occurs when the chickens swallow a bacterial toxin (produced by Clostridium botulinum) by eating decomposing animal matter, worms that contain the poison, and rotting fruits and vegetables.

Symptoms associated with botulism include general weakness, paralysis of the legs, wings, and then neck, and sudden death.

5. Marek’s Disease

Marek’s disease is one of the most dangerous viral bird infections. It is frequently reported in chicken flocks all over the world. It is assumed that each herd.

Marek’s disease is caused by infection with the herpesvirus, which infects the nervous system and causes tumors in the internal organs of chickens.

Marek’s disease develops in several stages and affects different parts of the bird’s body causing a variety of symptoms. The symptom mentioned in relation to chicken falling is neurological symptoms. The virus affects the nervous system and leads to paralysis of the legs, wings, and neck!

The disease spreads in the whole flock, as it is highly contagious. It is transmitted through the respiratory tract by breathing the virus released in chickens’ hair and feathers.

The virus causes tumors in the ovaries, liver, kidneys, spleen, heart, and other organs. It also leads to very low egg production, loss of appetite, weight loss, anemia, and dehydration. Some birds may die without showing any signs.

It is a deadly disease that can lead to losses in the herd to 70%. Unfortunately, no effective treatment has been found for this disease so far. So precautionary measures and adherence to vaccinations are very crucial to avoid this disease.

6. Distortion

Chickens can have small deformities, as it is a logical part of the nature of their life that is subject to many challenges. Sometimes deformities appear in symptoms of difficulty walking and imbalance.

It could be a slight deformity of the chicken’s legs or even the breastbone causing them to get stuck. It may not cause problems as many chickens enjoy and often live happy and healthy lives even if they do not have perfect balance.

The important thing here is to examine the chicken carefully to rule out any other pathological causes. It may be a chronic thing, so there is no need to worry. If it does not affect the health of the chicken and its production.

What Is The Treatment For Chicken Falling Over?

A Little Silkie Chicken

It must be taken seriously, and promptly seek advice from the veterinarian. It is better for Silkie chicken to be carefully examined to determine the causes and extent of the condition’s development to make the right decisions regarding its treatment.

As each case requires a specific treatment based on the cause of the disease as we mentioned above. Accurate examination and diagnosis are not to be underestimated if you want to protect your flock from further losses.

Treatment options are often antibiotics for infections and nutritional supplements for vitamin deficiencies.

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Doaa Salah
The shy one (too shy to put her photo) and the only girl in our team! Doaa is a veterinarian who is passionate about writing content. She knows a lot about animals and birds, as she has been studying them for many years now. Her goal? She is researching and learning to convey to you all the knowledge she have and what's new about farming.