Crossbeak: trimmed, it bled, questions:

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Wynette, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator

    Sep 25, 2007
    I have an EE pullet with a severe case of crossbeak. She seemed to be eating fine and doing well with no intervention from me other than a deep bowl to eat from. I felt awful when, one day last week, I opened the access door for she and the other 21 she's in with, and I saw her staggering when she walked down the ramp. I rushed in & picked her up to examine her and realized immediately that she was VERY VERY thin. I mixed up some baby bird handfeeding formula & fed her 3 times that day; she seemed to regain some strength.

    Then, the following day (which was 5 days ago), I decided I'd try to trim her beak and see if that was the issue (after searching on BYC to see how this is done). I used a dog toenail clipper and had stiptic (sp?) powder on hand, and trimmed a tiny didn't look to be enough, so I trimmed more, and hit tissue. ARGH! It bled, so I dumped some powder in my hand and pushed it onto the bloody tip (queasy time for me....). Bleeding stopped. I then trimmed just a teensy bit from the bottom beak, as it is very, very long.

    She seemed down the rest of the day (maybe in pain from me trimming too much?), so I continued handfeeding with a syringe for 2 more days. By then, she was eating really well, and I was SO relieved!

    My question is: are chicken beaks like dog toenails? I know with dog toenails that if you trim & hit the vein, if you give it a couple of days, the vein will have "pulled back" and you can trim a bit more, eventually getting it shorter & shorter? If this is the case with chicken beaks, I'd like to keep trying to trim more back, as it's still quite hooked over. But, I don't want to do this if I'd hit blood again and cause her pain.

    I did see a post where someone takes their chicken into a poultry vet and get the beak trimmed/cauterized so they can go shorter. This seems a bit drastic, but if it's the best option for this pullet, I'll go that route (if I can afford it). Thanks for your feedback!!!
  2. melleo

    melleo Songster

    Mar 28, 2008
    St. Paris ohio
    I have an ee with a crooked beak also.

    I trimmed her beak and got a little too close too.
    It was just a drop but it didn'ttake the other chickens long to start pecking at it.
    I kept an eye on her and it seems to have helped I'd like to trim the bottom beak a little more too
    So any info we can get will help right??
  3. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    are chicken beaks like dog toenails

    Yep! They have a quick just like toenails.

    I'd trim it a bit then leave it for a week and see how they do.​
  4. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator

    Sep 25, 2007
    Perfect! Thanks so much, SpottedCrow! I guess I'll trim a tiny bit more each week until it gets to where she seems to be able to eat more. I'm really happy to get this info. - I felt SO badly when I saw her walking wobbly, and realized she'd lost so much weight. Must have been awful for her to have to watch the others eat while she got weaker and couldn't do so. Sigh. Just not enough time in the day to spend quality moments with each bird. But, I'm on the right path to helping her gain back her weight back and feel better! She's already looking much better and acting normal, so it shouldn't be long before she's regained her weight!!

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