💔broken. Only 1 left.

KBaker71

Chirping
Jul 6, 2020
22
58
56
Two stray dogs killed 2 if my sweet hens...leaving 1. She's injured, not sure how bad, but she is walking, "talking", eating, drinking, and flapping her wings. But she and I are heartbroken.

I have soooo many questions.

First, what should I watch for in my hen, JT's behavior in the next few days? My husband will not allow her to stay in the house, even though she is missing feathers, skin, and has a "hole" in her back. (Bloody, but not bleeding).

Second, if she survives, should I try to get a friend or two for her?

Third, please...how do I "pest proof" the yard, or at least the run? The coop is pretty much indestructible, but obviously the dog fencing and bird-netting around the top does not keep them from "flying the coop", and once out, the fencing in my yard was worthless. I'd like to give them a decent sized run, but for my own sanity, I have to be able to walk through it to interact with them. If it helps, I'm 5' tall, on the nose.

Any help will be appreciated.
 

The Cave

Songster
Oct 18, 2020
194
531
156
Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Monitor her eating and drinking, make her as comfortable as possible. If you can friends would be good. You can put antibiotic polysporin on the wound, without pain relief to help skin stay moist and hopefully heal faster. Keeping it clean is needed too...saline flushing works or betadine on multiple pieces of gauze and wipe dirt away from wound. They usually heal pretty quick. If she got tossed around there could be internal damage. Hard to know that until she starts showing symptoms like not eating/lethargic.

The only way to really get them to stop flying over would be higher fencing or putting chicken wire over top of the run. I mean ultimately if its life or death and you can't get prevent them from flying over I might consider clipping wings back a bit... There is a post about it here:
https://www.backyardchickencoops.co...ntre/5-top-tips-on-how-to-clip-chickens-wings
 

KBaker71

Chirping
Jul 6, 2020
22
58
56
Monitor her eating and drinking, make her as comfortable as possible. If you can friends would be good. You can put antibiotic polysporin on the wound, without pain relief to help skin stay moist and hopefully heal faster. Keeping it clean is needed too...saline flushing works or betadine on multiple pieces of gauze and wipe dirt away from wound. They usually heal pretty quick. If she got tossed around there could be internal damage. Hard to know that until she starts showing symptoms like not eating/lethargic.

The only way to really get them to stop flying over would be higher fencing or putting chicken wire over top of the run. I mean ultimately if its life or death and you can't get prevent them from flying over I might consider clipping wings back a bit... There is a post about it here:
https://www.backyardchickencoops.co...ntre/5-top-tips-on-how-to-clip-chickens-wings
Thank you!
 

hayley3

Crowing
13 Years
Aug 16, 2007
2,058
1,927
426
Southern Indiana
Two stray dogs killed 2 if my sweet hens...leaving 1. She's injured, not sure how bad, but she is walking, "talking", eating, drinking, and flapping her wings. But she and I are heartbroken.

I have soooo many questions.

First, what should I watch for in my hen, JT's behavior in the next few days? My husband will not allow her to stay in the house, even though she is missing feathers, skin, and has a "hole" in her back. (Bloody, but not bleeding).

Second, if she survives, should I try to get a friend or two for her?

Third, please...how do I "pest proof" the yard, or at least the run? The coop is pretty much indestructible, but obviously the dog fencing and bird-netting around the top does not keep them from "flying the coop", and once out, the fencing in my yard was worthless. I'd like to give them a decent sized run, but for my own sanity, I have to be able to walk through it to interact with them. If it helps, I'm 5' tall, on the nose.

Any help will be appreciated.
You need an electric fence if you want to protect from stray dogs.
Also your hen is probably in shock and needs to be kept warm and also give her some electrolytes.
You need to watch her wound for redness and swelling. My favorite is Vetericyn Plus spray for wounds. It's easier than spreading on an antibiotic salve.
 

Acre4Me

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Nov 12, 2017
5,605
15,249
797
Western Ohio
Sorry for your loss!!

you will need to prevent them from flying out, so bird netting or similar. Posts to support the netting can work, but post pics bc there may be other ideas once we see your setup.

to prevent digging into the run, you should add a wire apron about 18” or more on the ground away from the fence, and 12-18” up the side of the fence. Digging predators usually try to dig right at the fence line, so they give up if they don’t make progress, and do t think to back up beyond the apron.
 

Callender Girl

Free Ranging
Sep 18, 2018
1,899
9,861
606
North Central Iowa
I am sorry for the loss of your two girls. Predator attacks are heartbreaking because one minute, everything's fine -- and then nothing is. I hope your surviving girl recovers. Sounds like you are getting some good advice.

I had one survivor from a mink attack on a coop of four. Honey was skittish for a while, and my first attempt to house her with some other hens wasn't successful. But I thought she needed friends.

Eventually, I let her out in the yard (none of mine free range when I'm not home. They are not allowed in the runs and are kept cooped unless I am here), where she found her own new friends and moved into their coop.
 

cmom

Hilltop Farm
13 Years
Nov 18, 2007
25,618
17,694
771
Florida
My Coop
My Coop
So sorry for your loss. I agree with the other posts. I have covered large pens for my birds. My pens are covered with good heavy duty netting. I also have electric wires around my coops and pens, and nothing has gotten past the hot wires. I had a fox dig under a gate and kill some birds so now I have concrete under the gates. When I first put up the netting I ran short and bought some online that turned out to be crappy and an owl went through it three times. Each time I replaced it with more crappy netting because at the time that is all I had. Since I have replaced it with some good heavy duty netting, problem solved. My DH and a friend built me some coops that were open on one side but we live in Florida. Their hearts were in the right place but not a good idea to have one side completely open. I put tarps over them. Here is the owl going through the netting.
DSCF00031125 01.jpg
 

CHlCKEN

🍳 Just Beak-Cause I Can 🍳
Premium Feather Member
Jun 21, 2020
10,795
45,564
996
Tennessee
My Coop
My Coop
Can you call animal control about the stray dogs?
What are the laws in your area? If that happened here the dogs would be shot and disposed of. We live in a rural area but the laws here support protecting your animals.
I don’t think killing the dogs is the solution. It’s not unlikely they’re someone’s pet on the loose.
 

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