Bleeding Duck EMERGENCY HELP!!!


10 Years
Apr 17, 2009
Central Illinois
One of my 2.5 month old ducks was attacked and beaten up pretty bad. I can see blood on her head but she is walking fine. I havent done anything yet and I dont know what to do.

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it looks like something tried to grab her skull with their mouth its all on the top of her head and a lottle on his neck.
I have little to no experience with ducks but if she were a chicken i would separate her and put her in a dog crate so she doesn't get beat up and just monitor her check her head and identify the wound and clean it up and i would put on some neosporin. I hope she bounces back ducks are hardy little creatures!
Hey OSUman,
I too have little experience with chickens, however I do have quite a bit of experience with ducks. As a matter of fact, our first female Muscovy that we had on the farm was attacked actually twice. Once by the dog (it was really harmless, he's big and dumb and doesn't realize he can hurt when he plays!), he merely grabbed some of the feather off of her tail... and the second by a fox. Although it was not her head that was caught, she did get ripped wide open in the chest area by the fox. We found her sittin gin the field and when I picked her up, her whole chest was literally hanging. We ended up cleaning the wound with iodine (as it doesn't sting or burn) and warm water. We actually put her in the bathtub. We then bandaged her with self-adhesive vet-wrap (for horses and pets) as it doesn't stick to the animal, only to itself, and gauze. This wound was quite severe. I eventually started packing the wound with unpasturized, raw honey. It sounds gross but it seems to have some kind of "magical powers" as it mends the flesh back together.
In your case, I would put her in the tub (or in a small pool with warm water) and use some kind of cleaning solution. Bear in mind that soap may sting, and that you will have to keep it out of your duckies eyes. You can also use a Q-Tip to apply the iodine. There is actually iodine soap that you can get from your local feed store. It's a little more frothy than regualr iodine.
Anyhow, let her bath in warm water. He will likely flip his head around in the water, just make sure the water stays reatively clean, as the tend to poop in it a lot. They also need to clear their nostrils quite often so that they can swallow their food without choking. You will need to let him do this at least once every couple days to keep the passages clear of food, feathers, dirt, etc. Once he's done bathing and the wound looks clean, you should apply some kind of medicated ointment. The one I use and have had great luck with is called Hibitane. I don't know what kind of ointments they sell in different countries but in Canada, it comes in a white tube that resembles a toothpaste tube, with a yellow and blue label. I would put this on the wound for several days, at least 3 times a day to make sure that no infection starts. After about 2 days, put a small amount of raw, unpasturized honey into the wound, it will help to heal it.
While he is recovering, try to keep him indoors, in a warm, small, enclosed environment. I would use something like shavings for bedding, as straw can be very scratchy. Keep in mind however, with shavings there is normally some dust. So make sure the wound stays as clean as possible. Make sure he has access to lots of fresh water and his regular food, and also try feeding him other foods such as lettuce...bread also seems to perk them up quite a bit. Mine seem to love canteloupe and other fruits as well. Make sure that he is eating and drinking and pooping regularily.
I hope this helps. Keep us posted!
If you have any other questions, please e-mail me!
Good advice on the wound treatment. I would like to caution you tho about giving too much in the way of bread. It offers them little in the way of nutrition, fills them up so they are less inclined to eat what they are supposed to (for vitamins, calories, protein etc) and can become impacted in the crop. I do agree that bread is quite yummy but I reserve it for the times that I have to administer a pill or capsule. Hidden in a piece of bread....they gulp it down and don't even realize there is medication in it! When I have an injured duck that has gone off his food (especially a dabbler like a Mallard), I take a bit of his regular food and make a soup with it and give it to him in a bowl that won't tip and is too small for him to bathe in. You have to keep a close eye on the "soup" as it may look watery in the beginning, soon absorbs quite a bit of water and becomes quite thick. So add more water frequently to keep it soupy. This way he is hydrated as well as fed.
I definetly agree on the bread, I was just not sure if the little guy is eating or not...I was just thinking maybe something is better than nothing? I found that while my hen was sitting on her eggs, all she ever wanted was bread. She wouldn't eat the crust but it seemed to give her more...spunk. I could be wrong though.
Any other ideas on what could be fed to the duck to give it some energy?
I do however, know from experience that vet bills can get quite hefty as ducks are considered "exotic" pets lol, and even at that, it is still not an easy task finding a duck vet. If the wound isn't gaping or too extreme, I would definetly try healing it on my own before going to the vet. It worked quite well with my one female caught by a fox. I don't even want to imagine what the bill would have been had we taken her in.
Just a note, I know to some people taking a duck to the vet seems ludacris...but when they are pets and every other animal on the farm is allowed to go to the vet, when children are involved, there's no difference between a horse getting a vet check, and a horse getting a vet check lol.
A note I also forgot before, make sure the wound stays as dry as possible. While yes, it needs to be cleaned with water, make sure it has time to dry and not become a breeding ground for bactreria. Ducks aren't exactly the most sanitary pets you can have!
Dear Allie,
we had an accident this morning with our Duck Betty. Our cat Guinness thought it was time to have a serious go at her after a year that they have grown up together. So weird. Anyway, while searching the internet for help your information is just great and really gave as the courage to handle it calmly. Bosse her life-companion is not knowing what is going on and quaking away or when it all happened he would peck her to get her up again, so sad.
We took Betty up in our bath, washed her and used Iodine, had her back in her little house with an infrared lamp glowing, clean shavings and food and water and tucked her nicely in her favorite corner. so now we just can wait for the healing process and keep our fingers crossed that she will be okay again.
Thank you oh so much for your great help by putting your information on internet for us to find.
Kind regards,
Elfi and Simon and Bosse (not Guinness, he has house arrest)
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