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Another Scalped Chicken Thread

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by TXchick, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. TXchick

    TXchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2009
    This is Bartholomew and he is about 4 months old. He was scalped by his much bigger brother. I am working on getting rid of this big brother and another roo. But until then I have Bart who is very sweet and tame and i wouldn't mind keeping him if I can get him well. When this happened on Wednesday, I thought I should go ahead and put him out of his misery. Then I read several threads on here about similar injuries and decided to give him a chance. you can see from the photos what the situation is. I have read several of the remedies here and am trying variations of them. He is separated from everyone. He has a cage inside under a heat lamp and a cage outside so he can get sun and fresh air. While I feel like he could probably survive the injury itself, I am afraid he might starve to death before he does. First of all on the injury..... it is necrotic and stinky. I started out putting neosporin on it and then bought polysporin (as I seemed to see more ppl were using poly). I was cleaning it with warm water and have also mixed up saline, rinsed it off with diluted peroxide, and after cleaning it I slathered polysporin on it the first couple of days. It was becoming so terribly smelly and I started looking up necrotic wounds and read about Honey. Now of course I read about a certain kind of honey used in medicine but since I have been applying regular store-bought honey I have to say it really is waaay less smelly. I can see signs of improvement on some of the skin but as you can see, he looks a little BBQ'd. I am not really doing anything consistently as I keep reading about new things. The only thing I am doing consistently is cleaning him off in the mornings, and putting something on him and the last couple of days it has been honey. Morning and night. I am happy to clean him and dress his wounds daily but the problem I am having is getting him to eat. I can touch all of his head without it hurting him. I don't think he is in pain. But he acts like he can't work his beak well. If I try to squirt some gatorade or water or milk or whatever onto his beak he will open and close it enough that I know he is getting a little something. I have to do this several times a day and it might only be a syringe full at ta time that he will even try to take and it's a slow process. He holds his head like male turkey does (if that makes sense). I really feel like some of the ligaments and stuff have been damaged. You can actually see some of that stuff moving in the back of his head when he moves his beak. It is disturbing. I guess my question is, has anyone had a scalping that resulted in the bird not being able to work his mouth parts? Do you think he could recover from something like this if given more time? I don't want him to starve to death, I know at this rate he will. I guess I don't know if I should keep trying or give up. He has some life in him. He walks around the yard, tries to go be near the other birds, lays in the sun, tries to preen, but he wont' even try to feed himself. Anything he takes in is from me poking his beak with a syringe. I know these photos are horrible but I really think it looks a teeny bit better each day. Like in the second picture, the pink skin at the base of his neck looks better and there is some healthier looking stuff on the top right of his skull. Does this look hopeless? He has not died of infection yet. I can't take him to a vet. I don't have the money for an exotic vet. And I am in the country and when I have called vets in the past about chickens it seems like it is almost laughable to everyone that anyone would want a chicken doctored. Any thoughts? I have trimmed feathers way from the wound. I am afraid to use peroxide or iodine as I keep reading where people say it damages good tissue. But then I wonder if I SHOULD be using it on these black areas? I just don't know. What to do. The honey probably sounds stupid but I swear the smell is not nearly as bad. He was unbearable with the polysporin. It smelled up the room. Like death. Poor Bart.....
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  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    Yikes, poor boy, his brother sure did a number on him. Have you considered tube feeding him? It is the best way to get food/ liquids into birds that can't eat right. Is a link to a thread with pictures where someone was tube feeding their chicken. I have had scalp injuries, but not that bad, there maybe damage to the muscles etc that he needs to work his beak, but there is also going to be swelling and I am sure it hurts. Honey is a old time tested remedy for wounds so if it is working, why stop. You might consider injectable antibiotics (or if you tube feed him something that route). I don't think I would use iodine or peroxide on the black parts. Chickens can heal from some pretty terrible wounds, so as long as he is still acting like a chicken...
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/...h-my-bird-pics-for-visuals-very-detailed-post
     
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    I actually would recommend using weak betadine on the wound once or twice. You need to have help, and you need to clean it very good rubbing the infected and necrotic tissue. Then if there is still black tissue around it, it may need to be trimmed away. Try not to get the betadine in his eyes. Apply neosporin ointment. Antibiotic ointments shouldn't smell bad. Tomorrow, clean it again with weak betadine, and daily or more often apply the neosporin. I would go to your farm store tomorrow and pick up some procaine penicillin in the refrigerated medicines. Get some 3 ml syringes and 22 gauge needles. Give him 1/10 of a ml into his breast muscle daily for at least 4 days. Alternate sides of the breast each day.
     
  4. TXchick

    TXchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2009
    thank you both. I think I really need get food in him. It's so hard to mess with forcing his mouth open when anywhere I grab on his head is horrible and bone or scab but I may try to tube feed. I feel like he is getting weaker. He is standing up right now but he can't seem to keep his eyes open. On the ointment being stinky thing, just to clarify, the ointment wasn't stinky, it's the tissue and it seemed in general the tissue "rotting" was less stinky with honey than with antibiotic ointment. I did put neosporin on it last night. Was thinking about alternating. But maybe I should stick with one thing. I also have the wound-kote spray that people swear by but I think this is probably beyond that. Maybe later if/when it has healed quite bit more and if he is ever back out with girls only. I'll keep trying..thanks!
     
  5. TXchick

    TXchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2009
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    okay I am hoping somehow people see this update. Look at the amazing progress Bart has made. I really thought he was a gonner. But he has all this nice new pink flesh growing. The issue now is the area of exposed bone is turning black. This picture was actually taken several days ago and the part that is turning black in this photo is really black now. I don't know what to do. it looks like it is pulling away and I wonder if there is something better going on under it. I can't seem to find anything about wounds and exposed bone other than stuff about skin grafts and keeping it covered. I put the polysporin on daily but it is still black. He is getting so strong and acting normal and crowing and wants to be with the other birds but obviously he is a long way from being around other pointy, pecking beaks. Any advice on bone? Just keep truckin'? I guess I really am just curious what it means. could it be healing underneath the black bone? Thanks!
     

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