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Chicken "scalped," loose flap of skin

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by PatS, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Went to go count beaks tonight and one of the chickens hadn't gotten up on the roost yet. In the dim light I could see blood on her head. Brought her in to spend the freezing night in the people-house. When trying to clean her wound, I can see she has a loose flap of skin that comes off the wound (think a bad toupee that flips over in the wind) when she shakes her head. If it weren't for the blood and some tissue, I'll bet I could see her scalp.

    I've read over and over how tough birds are and how they can recover from horrible maulings. I'm hoping this is the case, here. I sprayed vetrimycin on it. Should I put some neosporin on it? If this were a human, I'd say stitches were in order, but we have no vets around here. (We're remote.) IS there a way to hold the skin in place to let it reattach in the right place?

    I don't know for sure, but I'd guess a rooster is responsible. The cut is behind the comb.

    She's a 7 month-old Buff Orp.

    Thank you for any help you can give.
     
  2. rockinpaints

    rockinpaints Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think she should be fine as long as it has stopped bleeding. It is amazing how their scalp can heal. The skin probably does not have a good enough blood supply to reattach but the wound will granulate in (grow new tissue). Keep it as clean as possible and it will dry up in a few days and begin to grow new skin. She should be OK. Good luck!
     
  3. KimberlyJ

    KimberlyJ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Rockinpaints is a Golden Feather Member so she probably knows alot more than I do. BUT on a similar thread on here last night they were discussing using SuperGlue to seal a wound. Perhaps just a drop would seal the flap enough to keep the wound covered? Maybe keep it from getting infected? Just an idea.
     
  4. rockinpaints

    rockinpaints Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have to share a funny story that happened this summer. We had a chick about 4 weeks old who lost his entire scalp (completely). Not sure how and it wasn't a pretty sight. It looked so bad I was sure he was on deaths door.

    Well I tucked him in a box and put him on my husbands work bench with a note. I wanted my husband to put him out of his misery because I could not and didn't want him to suffer. I wrote on the note that if the chick was still alive when he got home would he 'take care of him' for me.

    When I returned home I asked him what he did with the chick ( assuming he had put him down) and he said he 'took care of him'. He said he gave him food and water, was that what I meant by taking care of him......[​IMG] Well needless to say I couldn't put him down after that. It took a couple months but he grew a new scalp complete with feathers and did just fine! [​IMG]
     
  5. LostAcreFarm

    LostAcreFarm Out Of The Brooder

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    i would not suggest super glue! that might do some damage later on in her life.....i had a simliar thing happen with a raccoon attack. I used the neosporin ointment (not spray) and dabbed it on the wound in large quantities then fold the flap of skin back over. the neosporin acts like a glue, and it will heal completely in a couple of months....you can barley tell mine had its injury now (and it was a pretty bad one, her whole face had been bitten by a racoon so if mine survived that yours can survive this) also keep her seperated and very warm, try giving her apple sauce or oatmeal, mine wouldnt eat for at least 3 weeks i dont know how she stayed alive, but she did! just remember chickens are alot stronger then we think [​IMG]
     
  6. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, Everyone. We're in for some record lows for the next few nights, so she can stay with us inside for a few days. How long should we keep her separate from the others, do you think? I have a covered 6x8' doggie kennel that I can cover with a tarp against the wind and rain and put a pet carrier in, like I do for setting broodies, but it does get cold here in November. Tonight it is in the low 20s but usually this time of year it is around or a few degrees above freezing. Think that set-up will do for her? Should I put another girl in with her to keep her warm? (I'm thinking of a submissive older hen.) Or would she get picked on with all those feathers stained with blood?

    The wound actually looks very clean, no dirt at all. She's resting finally. She wasn't too happy about being confined to a Poultry Pyramid, as it is about 3X3, but she's got clean towels on the floor. Much fewer germs than in the coop, I expect!

    Which would be better, Neosporin or BlueKote? Should I wait till the would dries a little? Correction: I cleaned it with Vetericyn, which according to its own literature is supposed to be a miracle worker, but I wonder if it has any anti-bacterial properties at all. The feed store recommended it once for something else.

    If there is anything else you think I need to do, please let me know.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2010
  7. erthymom2

    erthymom2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i have a turkey poult as 4 mnoths old who got scalped by
    some of my older , grumpier hens who attacked him.
    he and another poult from his hatching are separted and doing great. he never grew back a skin flap, but hus scab had hardened and there is alot of protective muscle in its place. i used neosporin and the luiqid bandaid stuff from the first aid section for people at walmart - worked great.
     
  8. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What shape is the flap of skin? Anything that is "C" shaped or "U" shaped, or only attached by a thin section will likely lack sufficient circulation and will die potentially causing infection. In those cases it is best to remove the flap as it is essentially dead tissue.
     
  9. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The flap is "U" shaped.

    I should cut it off? Really? Is there something I can put on it to numb the pain? I agree, while the wound itself looks clean and healthy, I could sense a very faint oder today as I was applying the vetericyn and neosporin, and I thought it might be coming from the flap.

    She's feisty. She put her head through the grate and tried to walk the pyramid through the house so this morning I put her in a kennel outside. She escaped and ran back to the coop, narrowly avoiding a "good morning" from the rooster. (Everyone is either hanging in the coop or free ranging this frosty a.m.) I caught her and took her back to the kennel. SHe has warm water and food. She clearly feels okay and wants to be back with the others on her home turf.

    We have two roosters who have grown up together and must be just starting to fight over the girls, which is what I think possibly led to the injury. So I have to choose the one I think may be responsible for this and send him to freezer camp. I put HIM in the other kennel.

    Anyway, if anyone has a suggestion how to cut off the flap humanely, please let me know. (Just use poultry shears?)
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2010
  10. JoAnn_WI_4-H_Mom

    JoAnn_WI_4-H_Mom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We had the exact same thing last year.

    Anything I did to try to re-attach the flap was scratched awry by the bird.

    She healed completely, but earned the nickname "Lumpy" for having a misshappen healing. It didn't seem to hinder her any.

    Birds are amazing self-healers.
     

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