Another feather questions, this is bad though.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by klucretia, Jan 14, 2011.

  1. klucretia

    klucretia New Egg

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    Jul 21, 2010
    Warwick, RI
    I had 3 chickens, one ea, White roc, Buff Orphington, and RI Red. The Buff was got by a hawk.[​IMG] It's too cold here in winter for just the two, so I got 4 more from a friend, one RI Red, two some kind of Rocs, and a "we don't know". Well, one of the new Rocs had a bald spot at the back. My friend has 3 roosters so we figured it was from that or some pecking because of being kept inside with all the snow we've been having. I put them in with mine and all seemed fine for a 3 days. Then we had another blizzard and I know that stresses them, so I did cover a good sized area outside of the coop for them to be able to get out. (coop is 5'x5' and cleared area is about 5'x6') They do have heated water, chicken mash hung up inside, get supplemental scraps, cracked corn and sunflower and some other seeds I'd grown during the summer for variety.
    Anyway, it seems the White Roc (probably top hen) has started pecking on the new one with the bald spot. I"ve ordered those blinders and they should be here in a day or so, but when I got back today adn checked, it seems the poor thing is being plucked clean!! Her back, almost up to her neck is almost featherless, and now it is spreading down back under her wings. No bleeding or scabs, no signs of bugs, but it seems the feathers are either being pulled out or falling out. I do know when I got her, she had a little limp and now I wonder if she's being picked on for being lame? Either way, I have no where to keep her aside, can't bring her in the house because my mom has problems breathing. I do have a rabbit cage I can put her in and let her stay in the coop alone, but without being able to cozy up together, I'm afraid she will freeze. Plus, the wires are far enough apart that I'm sure she could be a sitting duck for getting pecked at. It's near 0 at night and not getting any warmer until next week. The coop is not heated but well insulated so I'm I'm not sure if it would be warm enough.
    I even thought to cage up the white rock until I can get the blinders for her. She's usually a really good bird, kind of bossy but never been mean like this. I know the 'new' thing and introducing them, but with all this snow, I cna't even let them out to run off some of their frustrations.
    Thanks so much for ANY suggestions!!
     
  2. Chickengal505

    Chickengal505 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 4, 2010
    Bolivia N.C
    Okay can you rig a heat lamp in the rabbit hucth? Might you have a square piece of fleece or fabric like fleece?
     
  3. Jane Jill Jack

    Jane Jill Jack Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2010
    Maybe she's a little late moulting? Sounds like they're getting enough vitamins.
    oh, and [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2011
  4. klucretia

    klucretia New Egg

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    Jul 21, 2010
    Warwick, RI
    I hadn't thought of a heat lamp!! What a dork. I did put the White Roc in the rabbit cage for now because when I went out , she started pecking on another one too. I'll keep her in the rabbit cage till the blinders come but it might be 'soup pot time' for her. Pecking on two, I dont know if even the blinders will keep her from doing it.
    I do have all kinds of fabric. Are you thinking of a chicken jacket??? I heard of that for rooster damage, but not for pecking. Please tell me more!! [​IMG]
     
  5. klucretia

    klucretia New Egg

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    Jul 21, 2010
    Warwick, RI
    I don't think it's moulting. I"m actually seeing that white one peck at the others. She might be trying to prove who is boss, but it's way too much damage if she keeps up and starts on them all. It's two now, so she's in the rabbit cage to give me time to think and not just fly off the handle. At least I did see her pecking at the first one, and another one too, so I do know that is what it if from. The big decision, will I be able to save her. She's seperate for now, then blinders. See what happens then. I would like to hear more about that fleece idea. I am thinking she meant a chicken jacket so I'm off to try and find info on that.
    Thanks so much to both of you!! [​IMG]
     
  6. Chickengal505

    Chickengal505 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 4, 2010
    Bolivia N.C
    LOL yes im thinking of chicken jacket [​IMG] Bald people wear hats... Bald or 1/2 bald chickens wear jakets! [​IMG] Try cutting a square of fleecey fabric big enough to cover her bald spot [​IMG] Then... well we'll have to think of a way to keep it on... OH!! Try cuttung a lage square of fabric big enough to cover her whole body. Cut a hole in the top big enough for her head to go through. round that off. But when your cutting make shure that there is a T But much thicker than that one [​IMG] sew the - part of the T together so it raps around her belly. [​IMG] hope you got that... [​IMG]
     
  7. tammye

    tammye Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 22, 2010
    NH
    I don't think bald and freezing temps are a good thing. I also have a relentless feather plucker who is getting pinless peepers today also. I have been taking my blad hen in at night until she gets some feathers back. If you can not bring them into a warmer place inside then a hen apron with a fleece lining would help her out until she feathers out again, you can put vasaline, bag balm, utter butter on her bald spots to help prevent frost bite to the exposed skin, can get their feathers a little messy, but at least her skin won't freeze. I have tried lots of things to help prevent the feather plucking, nothing has worked yet. I have a two roomed coop, so lately I have been separating them and my bald hen is getting some new feathers, but I know if they are all together, in just one day they would get plucked out, so hence the pinless peepers, I hope they work( have read good things here about them), but i must say I fell kinda bad having to do it, but I also don't want my other hens to suffer and thats exactly what is happening.
     
  8. klucretia

    klucretia New Egg

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    Jul 21, 2010
    Warwick, RI
    Thanks Chickengal and Tammeye. The 'pecker' is doing well in the rabbit cage and they all love having the light in there at the moment so all is well. Plus, everyone is happy with the 'pecker' in a seperate cage. Luckilly they have not taken to tormenting her or anything. Her buddy does stick pretty close to the cage and seems to be keeping her company.
    I did get the bluekote to spray the poor pecked bottoms and with 'the pecker' in the rabbit cage, it seems the feathers are already showing signs of pins growing so apparently not too much stress going on. Everyone is eating well. I also added meal worms because of the temp. (These girls are spoiled! All I could find was berry flavor meal worms, and way pricey too!! Who would have thought Hopefully the extra protein will help them recover quicker and stand up to the cold better) I think I might get some wheat flour or something and start growing my own.
    My peepers came I was going to put them on yesterday but I need to watch the video again because the little pieces that go in to their nostrils seem a bit large so I want to make sure I dont put them on backward. Funny, they do not come with directions! I came to BYC today to find the video and thought to check this listing for that chicken jacket. So I'm glad I found your two posts.
    I did try making a chicken jacket. It seems to work very well!! I checked a few posts and found some suggestions. One gal said she makes slits for the wings, but it didn't look very comfortable so, I made something like a horst saddle blanket but pear shaped with a hole in the 'stem end' for her head. I did run some lightweight shoe laces from each side of the neck to each side of the bottom of the pear and tied them with criss-cross to help keep it on. It seems to be fine. The ties are far enough back to not interfere with the wings or tucking their head to sleep, it doesnt' get in the way of pooping and I made it blue because I read that blue is a warning color and that's why the bluekote works to keep them from pecking also. I am thinking, if it were really cold here, might make it more of a bone shape, with the head hole in the middle so there would be some protection for the beast area too. With ties at the sids of the bone ends, the wings could fit with no constriction and have as little of a constrained feeling as possible. I may come up with a pattern and post it for that one. I will defiinitely post a pattern for the pear shaped one because it works great and should fit just about any size bird.
    Thanks everyone for all your great advise!!! Take care and hug a chickie today![​IMG]
     
  9. Laurieks

    Laurieks Where did the time go???

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    Sonoma County, CA
    I sprayed BluKote on a pecked hen & they left her alone immediately. She's all feathered in now. [​IMG]
     

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