Baby Girl sums it up best: “One mine baby chickens has a owie on her leg”.
One of our chicks has injured her leg. We don’t know what happened, but her hock (the joint) is swollen, the shank (the lower part of the leg) is at a wonky angle and her foot is kind of floppy. Reminds me a little of when the hubby dislocated his shoulder, but with significantly less swearing.
She is kind of the runt of the brood, so we moved her into her own space so the other girls wouldn’t pick on her. Before we moved her, they were walking all over her, literally. She gets around surprisingly well by hopping on the good leg. There is a lot of balancing with her wings and occasionally putting down her hock to right herself (I’m guessing that is not helping with the swelling). Otherwise, she keeps that leg up, but is still eating, drinking and pooping regularly.
So, here is our dilemma. Do we wait and see if she improves on her own? Is there something we can do to help fix it? Do we loosen the purse strings and take her to the vet? From similar-sounding cases I’ve read about, the responses have run the gamut. At the very least, I can say with certainty that we aren’t willing to put her down. She has a much gentler temperament than some of the other gals, which seems an especially desirable trait while being raised around kids.