Attempted Decapitation


7 Years
Oct 6, 2015
Something tried to pull this hen head first through a chain link fence. She survived, & my husband said that earlier today she was free ranging with the flock & pecking around despite the wound. Tonight she is sleeping on the floor of the coop & is quiet.
The wound is on the back of her neck.
Anything I should do to help if she makes it through the night?


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Yes! Give her some water with sugar in it- if she's not drinking, find a little 1cc syringe or an eyedropper (cleaned, of course) and squeeze a little drop into the side of her beak, like you're greasing a hinge. Usually they want more.

Clean up that wound. First: Trim ANY and all feathers that are going to land in the wound, as those feathers will continue to irritate and cause dirt and other stuff to land in the wound during healing. I would use a 35ml syringe to make it easier to manage - they don't seem to mind squirts by syringe nearly as much as being put under a faucet.

Personally I would start with betadine (iodine) soap, then treat with Vetricyn spray and triple antibiotic. It's unlikely that's going to be anything you bandage because it's in a very mobile spot and there's always a risk having a wrap around the neck.

She'll need her own little area, preferably within sight and sound of the flock to recover without being picked at- Scabs are delightful little blood cookies chickens LOVE to eat- followed by fresh flowing blood, the other favorite. Blukote, which some say keeps chickens from pecking at wounds, often does not. I've seen chickens drink the blukote with the blood from the wound. And of course make sure whatever she's recovering in is SECURE!!

And above all- please get some hardware cloth, 3ft tall, and wire it to your chain link fence so nothing can reach in at ground level and pull another bird like happened this time. Predators always come back! I cannot emphasize that enough.

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