Bumblefoot plan of action .... please add any suggestions

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by DTRM30, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. DTRM30

    DTRM30 Songster

    May 25, 2009
    First I'd like to thank Dawg - he helped me figure out a plan of action even if it was mostly me doing the talking - ... I'm not looking forward to the time it's going to take, but I hope that this will banish this from my coop forever !

    anyway, long story short - I found that my roost has caused bumblefoot in 9 of my hens (the only ones who use the roost) - the rest - who don't use the roost- are free and clear.

    Roost is comming down tomorrow.

    Going to CVS on my way home for peroxide, neosporin, gause pads and foot wrap.

    I have doxicycline and amoxicillin on order and it should be here next week. Not enough amoxicillin to treat whole flock (got it for the one bird that I thought was the only one with it) so will be using doxicycline. (I read on a vet page somewhere that the three antibiotics of choice for bumblefoot were doxicycline at 50-100mg per day, amoxicillin at 250mg per day and something that started with an L ).

    Plan is :

    Treat those with the worst cases by soaking in salt water, removing black scab and plug if there - rinsing with peroxide, packing with neosporin and wrapping.
    Those with very small spots that look to have just started - will leave for time being.
    Treat entire flock with dose of antiboitic for 7-10 days and let the kids use the eggs for bb gun targets.
    Follow up with mild cases to see if any action needed.

    Any suggestions ? Hints ? otherwise ?

  2. dela1991

    dela1991 Songster

    Apr 21, 2010
    What was it about your roost that caused the problem? I would like to avoid bumblefoot if at all possible.


  3. BLaBauve

    BLaBauve Songster

    Jun 14, 2009
    Are you changing to round roosts? I've had major and minor cases of BF in my flock. I recently treated a severe case. We cut it open, squeezed the gunk out, rubbed neosporin on it and wrapped her feet. We cleaned her feet every other day for a little over a week, and she was cured!

    I still don't know what caused the BF in my coop/run. I use mulch and have square roosts. I've been tempted to put in round roosts, but I'm not sure if that would help.
  4. DTRM30

    DTRM30 Songster

    May 25, 2009
    I have a round roost - but I believe it's just an improper size for their feet - and with roosting on it in the same position all night is apparently causing rubbing which is apparently making them vulnerable to BF. Strange - but it's the only thing that fits - I have silkies who do not roost - and not one has BF - I also have a LF that is lowest on the pecking order and is just plain not allowed on the roost (even though there is room) - and she has not one speck of BF. It's only the ones who are roosting each night. Even the LF that has gone broody only has it very minor - she's been in the next box for a few weeks. Same thing happens with cage birds like parakeets and cockatiels - if they don't have the proper size and/or different sizes/textures they end up with foot issues. It seemed OK when I put it in - based on looking at their foot size - guess I guessed wrong.

    Based on that - that is what I've concluded. If it was something in the run - that was stepped on - it wouldn't be so many - and if it was the gravel in the run - my assumption is that all would have it, and not just the ones who roost. I figure I'll take the roost down, treat - and see if that was the actual reason based on the theroy of deduction.

    They'll be fine nesting in the bedding until I can do something different. Besides - It'll help their feet heal - not having to jump up and down on the roost.

    I'll have 4 total that I'll be treating at this point. two are starting to get swollen feet - one had a swollen pad - and the last was accidentally treated - I was going to hold off on her but when I was picking the dirt off, it pulled the scab and it started to bleed so I had to clean it, apply styptic powder and bandage her up. and wow did that bleed - it took a LOT of styptic powder to get it to stop enough to bandage.

    I'll be cleaning them all again tomorrow with a soak - and clean bandages - better ones than I have (only have bandaids in my house at the moment - funny seeing chickens running around with bandaids on their feet) - hopefully all will be said and done in a few days.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2010
  5. BLaBauve

    BLaBauve Songster

    Jun 14, 2009
    Any clue what kind of roost you will put back in? My girls roost on a 2x4 that came with the coop.... I know this is a common roost size. I have bantams and LF roosting on it. The LF are the ones with BF, although the bantams are new to the coop - we'll see how their feet hold up. I have a few chickens with just small circular scabs on their feet. I have made the decision not to treat them unless it gets worse.... I monitor their feet everyday.

    I also have a broody hen that had 1 foot with BF. Now that she is broody, it has healed up - which makes me think it was the roost. She hasn't been on the roost in 2 weeks.
  6. DTRM30

    DTRM30 Songster

    May 25, 2009
    I'm not sure at this point - I may not put any roost in - and just put a shelf on each side of the coop for them to go on if the feel the need to be up high. If I do replace it I think I'm going to measure their feet - the length of the pad and probably go about 1/16 or 1/8 larger - and just round the heck out of the edges. I would go with something flat . I may even go with something synthetic - as the wood could be the problem. I'm going to think on it.

    I was going to treat them all - but after speaking in length with another member - have decided to hold off and wait to see if the ones with minor cases manage to clear up after taking the roost out. I'm still stuck treating the ones I have now, though - I hate having open wounds on feet - it just opens the door for sooo many other bacteria. I'm going to give the 4 that have been cut a backup course of antibiotic for 10 days. Since I won't be able to tell the brown eggs apart I'll just let my kids smash them or use them for targets - which they do now with extras anyway.

    I was a bit overwhelmed and nervous about this whole BF thing, but now that I have a plan in mind I feel much better. I still worry about open wounds though - but it doesn't seem to be bothering them other than being held down for cleaning.
  7. BLaBauve

    BLaBauve Songster

    Jun 14, 2009
    I was SO worried at first - and I didn't even use antibiotics. They key is keeping their feet dry after cleanings I think. I used self sticking wrap and non stick gauze and it worked really well, my hen was never able to get it off. And it doesn't rain in Georgia these day! I did keep her separate for a week though, in my garage - but she beat the heck out of one of hens when I put her back in with the flock - that was probably the most stressful part!

    If I had to do the treatment again, I would - and I think I'd be more confident about it this time. I agree that you shouldn't mess with the minor BF conditions - my broody girls foot healed itself once she stopped roosting for a few weeks.

  8. I recently treated a rooster for this problem. I simply pulled the scab off, squeezed the (stinking) puss out and put him in a cage with a wire floor to keep him out of dirt and manure. He is healing up nicely. I don't use antibiotics if I can get away with it.
  9. grygon

    grygon In the Brooder

    Jul 8, 2010
    Is bumble foot similar to the sores that tiels and keets can get from having too small of a perch? I've looked at pics of bumble foot and it's terrifying! If it's something they can get from just stepping on things that makes it even more terrifying, but if it's just that their feet need a certain size of wood to hold onto then that makes perfect sense and I'll relax. My silkies don't roost, but they do have flat crates to sit on.

    (so I might add: why not think of roosts that they DON'T have to grip? make them wide enough they can have flat feet if they want, but short enough their poo is still expelled to the floor)
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2010
  10. Lofty Dreams

    Lofty Dreams Songster

    Apr 9, 2010
    You have eveything that I ccan think of.
    Chickens perfer to perch on flat perches

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by