Broken back hen....advice?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by moonhouse, Mar 22, 2008.

  1. moonhouse

    moonhouse Hatching

    Mar 11, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    Wednesday night my Rhode Island Red Hen that is nearly a year old got slammed by a very heavy coop door. Boo hoo. It's propped up by a stick (2X2) and while I had my back turned to refill the food I heard the door fall and a hen flap around. She was limping right away. Since I'm in Minnesota, I brought her in the house and kept her in the basement where it's cooler. I have had to work at feeding her, she seems alert but hurt.

    I had the neighbor vet look at her. And she can't find anything broken. Jenny the hen, can't put weight on her left leg. She doesn't hold her tail up. She uses her wings to get balance but doesn't want to hop or walk at all. She has pretty much stayed in the same spot in the box. I help lift her up every once in a while just to get her moving.

    Her comb is red, slightly paler than usual.

    Her poops are normal, maybe slightly green because she isn't eating too much.

    The basement is darkish. She hasn't laid any eggs which is a good thing. I'm actually wondering if I could keep her from laying for awhile, or does that happen naturally?

    Today when I held her and flipped her over to look at her tummy she flapped both wings to get away...a good thing.

    How do I keep her from laying so she can focus on getting better? Will it happen naturally?

    Has anyone else experienced a hurt chicken that turned out okay?

    What should I watch out for?
  2. claud

    claud Songster

    Dec 12, 2007
    If the vet didn't find anything broken maybe she is just sore. I've read that feeding them just corn stops them from laying but she may stop anyway just from the stress. I'm not sure corn would be a good idea anyway for nutrition in her condition. I'd say keep her calm and give her time to heal.
  3. moonhouse

    moonhouse Hatching

    Mar 11, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    I'm hoping that she is just sore too. However she really doesn't want to put her left leg down so I'm wondering if it's dislocated?

    I'll wait patiently and see how it turns out. I'm wondering about her back though or her lungs.

    Anyone else have a story?
  4. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    A few month back, I had a dog come through, and and attacked my free range flock. One of the RIR/Australorp roos went missing. Of course we looked for 3 days, in our woods, but could not find a body or feathers. Then one afternoon, I was in the back yard..and saw something in the woods. My son was visiting, so he ran out there to see what it was. It was my little roo. His brother was attacking my son, trying to get him away from the injured roo. We was able to get the roo...but noticed his back was definately broken. He couls not walk, but rather flopped around. I was ready to do " the deed" when my son offered the roo some feed. He ate like he was starving...which proved he was ready to try and make it. I put him in a very small pen, maybe 3x3 with a nice thick bed of straw. Gave him vitamins...electrolytes in his water, and fed him 22% protiene turkey starter crumbles. After about 4 weeks...he was up, and walking some.
    Here he about 6 weeks after the attack.
    You can see the "dent" where his back was broken.
    Today...he is up and at em, with all the others. He can mate the hens..and he crows ALOT! His new name... HERCULESE!
    Dont give up on your hen! Miracles DO happen!
  5. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Songster

    Jan 25, 2008
    I would not worry about controlling her laying cycle, let her body do what it wants. I would just keep her comfortable and well fed(I use chickstarter on wounded and ill birds). You can dissolve 5 tablets of asprin in a gallon of her water for the pain.

    Just be patient, I think she is just hurting, not harmed. Give it awhile to heal and keep her comfortable and unstressed.

    Last edited: Mar 22, 2008
  6. moonhouse

    moonhouse Hatching

    Mar 11, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    javascript:insert_text('[​IMG]', ''); Thanks for the story, Justusnak, I was hoping for something like that.

    I agree, Kim, that I'll just wait, and keep he stress free, and do what Justusnak did... give her aspirin in water and electrolytes and protein. I hope she pulls through.

    Thanks. I love this forum.javascript:insert_text('[​IMG]', '');

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