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Date Posted: 08:20:42 09/25/13 Wed
Author: D C T -- friendly poultry orthopedist

Below I have copied and pasted an email about a duck with
some valuable information that may help others who raise


In reference to my duck born on June 30 with the leg problems. We put him in a sling at night which helped get him off his elbows and put antibiotic on his elbows to help stop infection. His legs got worse and started to swell. Yesterday I took him to my vet. He said that the legs went bad due to a ZINC DEFICIENCY and that there is nothing I could do for him at this point except put him down because the infection was in the bone and he was in pain.
He said this never used to happen because the water troughs were made of metal with a ZINC coating to stop the rust. The birds would then drink the water with the ZINC in it. But now the troughs are made of plastic so ZINC needs to be added to the water.
He said to put a couple of galvanized nails in the trough and this wouldn't happen as the birds need the ZINC for their bones.
He also said that it is very reversible if I added the ZINC as soon as I saw the legs turning in but it was too late for my duck.
I am telling you all this in hopes you might post it to help out others that don't know better and save some wonderful birds. So let us all add some galvanized nails to our water troughs. It is a good thing to do for chickens as well he said.
Thank you for your help

On Fri, Aug 9, 2013 at 9:29 PM, D. C. Townsend wrote:


Back in June there was another Peking duck with a problem. I communicated it to vet who formerly
worked for the Georgia state poultry lab. He brought up the fact that a duck can get excercise from
swimming which gives it an advantage over a chicken with same leg problem.

After looking at photos and thinking about it perhaps you could construct a sponge bed for night use
to encourage legs or at least rest them. I am not experience with ducks the same way I am with
chickens and peafowl so can not be certain that this would work but it should not hurt.
Much of the day the duck needs to be free to swim. Long ago when I had a crippled peacock
I made a pad for his leg joint and this let the sore on it heal so you may want to do that

If you have more questions just ask. And I always like to know "the rest of the story"

friendly poultry orthopedist
----- Original Message -----
From: Brenda Voydatch
To: townsend
Sent: Friday, August 09, 2013 7:34 PM
Subject: Twisted leg...Need help


I saw all of your helpful posts on VoyForum and was wondering if you could help me. My Peking was born on June 30 and everything was fine. Ducky had a fall but all appeared to be well. About a week or so later the left foot was turned in and it was getting worse as she began limping to not walking. I gave her some niacin which seemed to help and she was again up limping and holding weight. From there she has gradually been getting worst. She walks on her left elbow and her web is always closed. Now she walks on her right elbow as well and that web she keeps closed. The left leg from the elbow up appears to be twisted and growing upward. She hobbles on her elbow where she is getting a sore. I have to bring her to the food as she doesn't want to expend the energy to get there. Once she has eaten she revives and struggles to get with the other ducks. Put her in water and she comes to life and has so much fun. She breathes heavy and is lower in the water than the others but still loves it. What can I do. She was our first one hatched at home. Please help.
Thank you

Link to pictures -> http://s1312.photobucket.com/user/trustGodsees/library/Duckys%20Bad%20Leg?sort=3&page=1

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