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Chicken Still With A Torn Ligament

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BellaBelinski, Sep 24, 2012.

  1. BellaBelinski

    BellaBelinski Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 13, 2012
    Beavercreek, OR
    Hi All Again!

    My chicken is still suffering with a torn ligament. I know it's going to take a lot longer than just a few weeks, but she doesn't seem to be doing any better than the day I found her injured. The instructions the vet told me was to keep her somewhat confined taking her outside a few times a day for 30-45 mins a day to get some exercise and be around her sisters. She says that chickens are prone to getting depressed if they are confined for too long in which they will stop eating and drinking. However when I take her out she seems okay at first, but when I go back out to bring her back in I find her huddled near the dryer vent under the deck. It's been in the 70s here so I haven't even considered her being cold. Last night I put a heat lamp in the small bathroom that I've been keeping her in, but I'm worried that it's too warm. I'm at a loss at what to do. However, she is still eating and drinking and loves her treats! I would love to hear the success anyone has had taking care an injured chicken and how you did it!
     
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    I have cared for many injured birds over the years. Isolation is a terrible punishment for a flock animal, and often is more detrimental than the original ailment. These days I opt to euthanize birds that are going to need long isolation times because of the poor success with both the isolation and re-integration.

    My most recent adventure in isolating an injured bird came very recently. Here's the tale of Frenchy, my goose with a broken wing: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/704000/so-i-now-have-a-500-goose-frenchy-is-back-with-the-flock
    As you will read from her tale of woe, the injuries were the least of Frenchy's concerns. Her enforced isolation nearly was the end of her. Her depression almost killed her and prevented her from healing like she should have. Frenchy was able to be re-integrated into the flock because her injury was merely a bum wing. A bum leg (that you are trying to heal) is a different story. I think you are going to have a much harder time getting yours back to her flock.

    Is there a way to keep the injured bird with the rest of the flock? Maybe put her in a small dog crate in the coop/run?
     
  3. BellaBelinski

    BellaBelinski Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 13, 2012
    Beavercreek, OR
    Hi Flock Mistess

    Wow! That's quite a story. Fortunately my flock only consists of 4 chickens. I am concerned about her becoming depressed, but I think at this point isolation is best in order for her to rest. I took her to an avian vet as soon as I noticed her injury. I had her boarded for 4 days because, wouldn't you know it, I was going to be out of town. When i picked her up the vet said that I could let her out to be with the other chickens during the day, but bring her in at night. That's all she told me. When she wasn't doing any better I called and she told me what she meant was to bring her out a few times a day for ~30 min - 45 min a day and bring her in at night. I said that's a bit of a different story from what I was told when I picked her up.

    Approximately 3 weeks later she's still limping. When I would go out to bring her back inside she would scream at me. At first I thought it was because she didn't want to come inside. So one day I sat in a chair outside to just watch her for a little bit longer and she limped to me. I picked her up and brought her in and she began to eat and settled right in. For the past 3 - 4 days when I have gone out to bring her in I have found her sitting next to the dryer vent under our deck. So, now I am keeping her in a large crate in the house. She seems content for now, but I am a little worried. I feel as if she needs to be off her leg for a while. I just hope it's not too late.
     
  4. Tivona

    Tivona Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 2, 2011
    Oregon
    I have had to isolate birds (ducks mostly) a couple of times and I just made a pen on one side of the fence so they could hang out near the bird in isolation. I would make sure that through out the day they would spend some time over near her. I put the food dish for the free birds near but visually blocked so the others would be sure to come over. They would sleep next to her just on the other side. At night the bird in isolation was alone but locked up close enough to hear the others. I think it helped greatly.

    Currently I have a goose with a bum leg who was just given to me. It is probably a tendon issue and I have the gander with her in a small pen at night and a small run during the day. I think total seperation would be too hard on her. I just try to keep it a small enough space so they don't have much to do and have nice spots to lay down and that the food and water are in the best resting area. It is keeping her off of the leg pretty well while still allowing them to move about some.

    Could you either make it like I did for my ducks and put her isolation pen near were the other would hang out but prevent her from doing to much or could you safely add another (nice/calm) bird to her isolation pen part of the day?
     
  5. BellaBelinski

    BellaBelinski Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 13, 2012
    Beavercreek, OR
    Hi Tivona!

    We have a very small A-frame coop. Their pen is pretty big (10x10x18). There wouldn't be enough room to isolate her in the coop, so she would have to be isolated outside in the pen which I wouldn't want to do at night. For the past few days when I went out to bring her back in I found her under our deck standing next to the dryer vent. For now I have her in a medium crate in one of our bathrooms. She actually seems to be more content inside than outside right now. I mixed some plain yogurt with some of her layer feed and a little water and she ate it up. She's eating and drinking so I'm not too worried, but I am a little concerned about her getting depressed. I know that I can't take the place of other chickens, but I do try to spend as much time with her as possible. I will definitely get her back out as soon as possible, but not too soon. Thank you for your response. Any other input is greatly appreciated!
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2012

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