Attack from above

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by mcurry47, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. mcurry47

    mcurry47 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 5, 2010
    Yesterday I had a Northern Goshawk got to my chickens killing one,and injuring two. Today when I got home one of the injured ones was hopping badly. I lifted up her wing to see no skin left. Is she saveable?

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  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Apr 15, 2009
    She can probably be saved, but you need to decide if that is what's best for her. I once saved a bird from a similar injury. She spent months in my basement locked away from her friends and family, endured two secondary infections, and when she finally healed her flock would not accept her back, so she had to be re-homed for her safety. I did that bird no favors by saving her.

    Does she have any punctures into her body cavity? Any organs exposed? Or is she just missing all the skin down to the muscle?
     
  3. mcurry47

    mcurry47 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 5, 2010
    It is just her skin from the thigh up the back and breast. I would say about 10 to 15% of her skin is gone.
     
  4. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Bring her inside and get her wounds as clean as possible. I like to use betadine/iodine tea (1 part iodine to 10 parts water) in a turkey baster to get a little pressure behind the stream. Once she is as clean as possible cover the wound in a very light coating of Neosporin. Don't put it on too heavily or you will chill her. You are not going to be able to dress the wound because she will pull all the dressings off. She is going to need to stay where she can be warm and dry and still. Her bedding will need to be an old towel or something similar. Because her wound is open to the air, you will need to change that towel at least 2X per day to keep her clean. She is going to become your roommate for the next several weeks, so set her up somewhere quiet and dim. You want to discourage egg laying to help her to heal, so she should be in a pretty dim room for the most part. You should get her some vitamins- PolyViSol or PoultryDrench/NutriDrench are all available. She is going to need to be eating a high protein diet to help her re-grow some of that skin- BOSS, catfood in limited quantities, scrambled eggs, yogurt, canned tuna, bits of meat from your table are all good sources. She can eat her regular feed, but make sure to offer high protein snacks in between. Monitor her for signs of infection- stink, sudden increase in the amount of "oozing", lethergy, fever, etc. If she starts to show signs of an infection then you will need to get some PenG from your local ag store, along with some syringes, and treat her for 3 days. I do not treat prophylactically for infections because antibiotic usage carries its own risks that are best avoided if possible.

    I hope this helps.

    ETA- You will need to keep the wound clean by using some weak salt water after the initial cleaning. Re-coat with the Neosporin as needed. After about a week or so I like to switch over from Neosporin to Blukote. I often use them in conjunction with each other. The Blukote to dry the wound up, the Neosporin to moisten it when the Blukote makes it too dry.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2012

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