WHY IS MY CHICKEN DIZZY (Why is my chicken staggering/acting drunk)

Dizzy chicken

Have you ever seen a chicken acting strange like staggering and acting dizzy?, you might be wondering, ‘what in the world is wrong with the chicken’. There are possible causes of this which are:

Botulism, lack of vitamins, fungal infection, cold,fever, malnutrition,long legs.

You will agree with me, it’s very weird seeing a chicken acting as if it’s drunk and at the same time wanting or trying to sleep while still standing, with it’s feathers like coat.

Dizzy chicken

This is very common to see in poultry farms, so here are the possible causes.

BOTULISM: This is a poisoning caused by the toxin from Clostridium botulinum, a type of anaerobic.

Also read: Poultry farming for beginners

BOTULISM is a type of food poisoning that can come from bad foods such as overripe, unripe and rotten fruits and vegetables etc which your chickens are pecking on and that can cause dizziness and staggering. Apart from bad fruits and vegetables, your chickens are probably pecking on a possibly poisonous plant, if there is any in your farm/yard.

Also read: How profitable is Layer chicks farming

So if you find out your chicken are acting dizzy or staggering like as if it’s drunk, you might want to check around the environment and do away with rotten, unripe and overripe fruits and vegetables and also check if any poisonous plant is around and do away with them.

Lack of vitamins: Another possible cause of this type of behavior on chicken is lack of vitamins.
As vitamin is important for human, so is it important for animals, and fowls are not exempted!.

Lack of proper vitamins such as Vitamin E/Selenium can also cause some neurological problems that might manifest as staggering or head shaking to your chickens.

Also read: How profitable is broiler chick farming

The fact is, vitamins boost their immune system which protects them from falling sick easily, and when they lack them, they can contract all kinds of sickness, including acting dizzy and staggering. This is very common among young chicks.

It is recommended to always provide them with vitamins from time to time, but seek the advise of your vet.

Cold: Another reason you see some chicken trying to sleep off, standing still and spreading their feathers like coat is because of cold.

So often, young chicks who are infected with cold or beaten by rain may act this way or even stagger sometimes, some might even clamp around themselves in order to generate heat to keep their body warm.

Also read: Tips to become a successful Goat farmer

Although this is considered normal for some chicks, so you might even consider providing heat for them, which is very likely to get them back to normal.

Fungal infection: Fungal infection is one of the causes of staggering and dizziness.

This is mainly caused by bad feed. Once feed is wet or damp, there is every possibility that it is infected by fungal and is very very bad for chicken.

fungal infections such as Aflatoxicosis and mycotoxicosis are both fungal diseases related to eating moldy feed. Aspergillosis and ergotism, also fungal diseases, may also be causes of staggering and dizziness in chicken.

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It is very advisable to keep your chicken feed dry always and keep away from damp areas.
Do not attempt to feed your chicken with moldy feed, and if you did by mistake and out of ignorance, it’s advisable to seek the advise of a veterinarian.

Long legs: This is very common among roosters, it is a situation, whereby a rooster grow long legs.
This long legs makes him to stagger when ever he crow. Although this is very normal and he might outgrow it, but it is funny anyway.

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In order words, you don’t need to do anything to him, just let him be and he might outgrow it and it will stop.

Malnutrition: Malnutrition can also cause these in fowls. This is because their body lacks the necessary nutrients that will keep them healthy and okay.

You just need to feed them with regular and nutritious feed, if possible, ask a vet the best feed for them.

Also read: Baby snails care

Fever: Fever is another thing that can cause these, especially dizziness among fowls.

There are many caused of fever, so it’s better to consult your vet doctor.


This article is mainly for educational purpose, we advise you to consult a veterinarian doctor for possible tests and medications.

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