We noticed one of our chickens limping pretty bad yesterday afternoon. My husband checked her foot for cuts(before googling) and didn’t see anything. This morning she seems worse. They free range during the day, but have a fenced in/gated run and coop they can go in and out of throughout the day. Today she didn’t leave the run. Around 5pm she went in and laid on the floor in the coop. She let me roll her over to look at her foot. I attached pics-does this look like possible Bumblefoot? We’re new to this, so I’m not exactly sure. We think she laid today as 8 of our 9 have been laying and we got 8 eggs, but can’t be certain. She had her mouth open a good bit today as if she was hot, but it was only 77 and not sunny today-the other chickens did not. When they went in to roost we noticed the others pecking at her a bit so we separated her-our shed is converted into half coop so my husband put her on the other side of the fencing with food, water, and somewhere to roost. Any suggestions?
It does look like bumblefoot but for starters I would soak her foot twice a day for ten minutes, in warm epsom salt water. Antibiotics like Baytril would help, but that is hard to find in the US now without a vet prescription. She can have a baby aspirin crushed up in a treat, twice a day should be plenty to help her pain. There are instructions on here re how to do your own surgery on bumblefoot, but I have never tried this and I've found that sometimes what I THOUGHT was bumblefoot, wasnt. That's why I suggested soaking it for a day or two, and then evaluating, before you go any further. Chicken foot wounds can be tricky. I've only one had one case of a staph infection (and it wasnt in the foot, it was in the leg) in a chicken, and in that case I was not able to save her. I've never had a case of what I thought was true bumblefoot. thank goodness. yes, keep her separate from the flock and make sure she is drinking and eating. Is she?
She seems to be eating/drinking. We made sure she had water next to where she was laying. We have cameras and just reviewed some footage to make sure there wasn’t anything that came into the yard because she was fine in the morning. The only thing we saw was a time where our son was near them, so it could also be possible that he stepped on her foot. He’s 5, so we’re going to show him tomorrow and ask. Not ruling anything out, just trying to figure out what it is so we can take the necessary steps. Can they break a foot?
I have circled two places on your picture, below. The blue circle looks like a small cut or split in the skin. It's not bumblefoot yet, but could become it. I would clean it up well and apply plain neosporin or plain triple antibiotic ointment, wrap to keep it clean so it can heal. The red circle - is that dirt (will it wash off?) or is it a black scab? Black scab means bumblefoot. Here is how I treat most bumblefoot (assuming that is what it is): https://www.tillysnest.com/2015/12/non-surgical-bumblefoot-treatment.html/?spref=pi
Okay, thank you. The red circle is dirt. I had started to try to wash her foot off and she got startled by something so I let her rest. We’ll clean it up tomorrow and assess. Starting to think maybe it got stepped on or she pulled a muscle somehow since it was a drastic change that we saw on the camera 30 mins apart.
Leg and foot injuries are not uncommon, they can 'tweak' things jumping down, or getting feet or legs caught. If you have any big jumps from roosts or other places, that may be what happened. I try to keep jumps down to 18 inches or less, especially for larger breeds. I would keep an eye on the limp and see if it resolves with a bit of time. If needed, you can crate her in the run in a wire dog crate with the other birds to limit her activity and let it rest. By keeping her with the other birds you will reduce her stress and reintegrating is much easier.
Could be severely bruised, yes, they can break bones in the foot, but I still recommend the Epsom salts soak. Most chickens like it, although they don't tolerate it for more than about ten minutes. It WILL help with pain, inflammation, and swelling, as will the baby aspirin. Be careful with the aspirin though, as I remember one person on here had a problem with it when they gave it twice a day for an extended period of time. Just give it for the first few days, and then if she's still in pain you could drop it to once a day. Yes, keep her confined, it is just too much stress to have to deal with if she's in that much pain and can't walk, and especially if the others are picking on her. Keep her close enough to the flock so that she can see and hear them, and they can see and hear her. Otherwise, she might have problems re-integrating when she is well enough to go out. I always like to give my birds in hospital cage extra goodies, treats, a seed block to peck, grapes or any treats like that to keep them cheerful and give them something to do. .