Cockeral With a Head Wound (pictures included)

SoftSilkie

Crowing
Sep 4, 2019
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Idaho
When I went out to the coop earlier tonight I peeked inside and saw one of my roos (his name is Finn) on the bottom roost, which is unusual for him. When I looked closer I saw he had blood all over his comb and face, some dried and some fresher.

When we got him inside he was in shock and didn't protest much. We tried to get the blood off him, but most of it was dried. We found the wound just to the right of the base of his comb. Somehow the blood had spread all over his face and comb and he had drops on his hackles and back. I think it looks worse than it is. We put hydrogen peroxide on the injury, and put some child's painkiller and electrodes in his water.

He is now out of shock and has even escaped once. His face and comb are covered in blood, but I don't know what to do about that. He drinks when I dip his beak in the water. He sometimes tries to flap but for the most part has been pretty mellow with me. His pupils shrink whenever he closes his eyes and grow when he opens them, but he can focus on my face (at least from the side, I don't know about the front). Right now he is in a kennel with pine shavings in my garage.

I have 3 roosters total (all cockerals), and he is alpha. They get along extremely well, but when there's blood... I think the others picked on him and made it worse. What could have caused this injury? Could it have been the other roos?

I'm looking for advice and trying to figure out what caused it. I don't want to go to the vet, and my motto is I can't cure it from home than I can't cure it at all.

I think the bleeding has stopped. Here's a few pictures of it before we treated it (sorry they're bad, I can get better ones tomorrow):
20200203_191231.jpg20200203_191235.jpg20200203_191243.jpg
 

CindyinSD

Crossing the Road
Aug 3, 2018
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Black Hills, South Dakota, USA
Sorry, I wanted to tell you that right away. Analgesics are dangerous to birds. You’re not even safe to use an antibiotic salve with analgesic. Hopefully he won’t have gotten too much.

His comb doesn’t look that bad, honestly. I’ve had stupid young cockerels do way more damage to hens and pullets. You can spray it with some Veterycin or Blukote. Cover his eyes, though. If you don’t have either of those, antibiotic ointment without analgesic will be fine. I’m guessing he got in a fight with another boy and got a head wound. After that everyone will peck at that bloody spot. You can put him back in the coop in his crate after a day or two, and move it into the run during the day so he isn’t alone. A bigger cage would be better if you can manage it. I made one 3’ tall x 4’ x 7’ with hardware cloth sides and a corrugated plastic panel roof. You’ll always be using it for one thing or another if you build one.

Right now I’ve got a rooster in it who got henpecked when I put him in with the girls. He’s gonna have to give it up pretty soon, though and look out for himself. I put him in there to make babies, not be one.

With days getting longer and females coming into lay, you’ll need to keep the boys from killing one another. I tried to put two roosters with 40 females, but that wasn’t working. Typically you’d have one roo for every 8-10 pullets & hens, but it depends on the roosters. Mine are mostly all right when free ranging but not when confined. That could change, though.
 

CindyinSD

Crossing the Road
Aug 3, 2018
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Black Hills, South Dakota, USA
Yes, @CindyinSD , please explain why she should not give him painkiller and also why she should remove the water. I'm also trying to learn, so I follow threads like this with active interest. Perhaps she should give him electrolytes? Thank you.
Electrolytes are fine—a little salt and honey if you haven’t got a vitamin/electrolyte mix like rooster booster or similar. Some like to add a bit of garlic too, and/or active apple cider vinegar (not much though or it will taste bad to him).
 

CindyinSD

Crossing the Road
Aug 3, 2018
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Black Hills, South Dakota, USA
Yes, @CindyinSD , please explain why she should not give him painkiller and also why she should remove the water. I'm also trying to learn, so I follow threads like this with active interest. Perhaps she should give him electrolytes? Thank you.
Oops, sorry—there’s nothing wrong with him having water—it’s just that she put the pain killer in the water. Water should always be available.
 

SoftSilkie

Crowing
Sep 4, 2019
1,032
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412
Idaho
Thank you for the information, @CindyinSD! I hope he didn't get to much, I will keep that info in mind next time one of my birds gets sick. This was my first time using pain killers, he just looked to be in pain. Glad it doesn't look to bad to you.

The kennel is just for the night, he can go in the run in the day.

Thank you!
 

CindyinSD

Crossing the Road
Aug 3, 2018
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Black Hills, South Dakota, USA
If you’re going to put him back in with the other birds, you need to spray Blukote over his raw skin. Otherwise they’ll peck it. They might peck anyway, so watch for a good little while to make sure he’s gonna be okay. They will kill him if he’s bleeding and can’t get away or defend himself adequately.
 

Eggcessive

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Premium member
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Apr 3, 2011
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southern Ohio
Keep in mind that roosters will challenge each other for the top spot, and they will fight and injure each other. I have kept a couple in a flock, but 4 is probably going to result in more injuries, not to mention all of the harm to the poor hens. You could rotate the roosters in with the hens, and keep them in separate pens. The comb wounds will heal in time.
 
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