Dog Attack, Advice Needed

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by CC Lefty, Jan 7, 2010.

  1. CC Lefty

    CC Lefty Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 15, 2009
    San Joaquin Valley, CA
    My chickens are free range and unfortunately, I had a stray dog kill four of my layers today. I have a fifth who is injured and I need to know whether or not to put her out of her suffering or if there is hope of recovery. She has a large wound on her back where the skin has been torn. It's about 3 inches long and it's impossible to close without stitches. I did the best I could to clean it out with warm water and I've applied EMT Gel that has worked well to heal gashes in my hunting dog, Sunny. Right now I have the hen separated, and she seems healthy in all other aspects. My concern is that this wound is not going to heal correctly and be susceptible to infections and such things. We do not have a vet in the area that treats chickens, nor do I think I would take a chicken to the vet if we did have one. Please do not judge me for this. Understand that these are farm animals and they serve a purpose here on our property as layers, never the less, I have no interest in seeing an animal suffer. If any of you have experience with such things I would love to hear some feedback and your honest assessment of her prognosis. If it seems that she should be put out of her suffering, I would rather take care of it now than later. Thanks in advance for any advice.



    ps. All of my so called "flighty" birds (4 blue andalusians) escaped unscathed. They were found in various trees and such things around the property. I will not forget this as I add more hens to my flock.
  2. organicfoltzfamilyfarm

    organicfoltzfamilyfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 13, 2009
    Trafalgar, IN
    Dispatch the dog.
  3. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    I have sewn up many, many hens. So many that I finally got an entire box of pre-threaded, disolvable sutures with cutting needles from my vet. You'd be surprised how easily they heal. While most have had their backs ripped open by roos, I've also operated on one and did a crop surgery and recently had one that got caught by a dog and her side was ripped open and the muscle in her leg torn open and the bone exposed. I just sewed up the muscle, then the skin and she is alive and well and running around our farm today. You can even use regular needle and thread which is what I did until my vet gave me the box of sutures.

    I normally clean the wound with hydrogen peroxide to get all dirt and matter out. Then stitch. Then apply Neosporin. Then I would spray with a product I loved but is no longer on the market called "Furall". It was a yellow spray antibacterial, anti-fly product. But there are new products on the market now like Screw Worm Spray that would work. I put the hen in a kennel in the coop till she heals then release her. I've never followed up with treatment - just let the wound dry and heal - and I've never had one develop an infection of any other problem. Every one has healed just fine.

    If you do a search for my posts you will find some that have pictures of sewn up chickens. Just lay her on her side, cover her head with a towel, and she will go into a sort of trance. No sedative or numbing agent needed and I've never needed anyone to hold her down - she just acts like she's sleeping while I sew.

    Best of luck.

    Edited to add: Here's a link to a thread where I posted pics and procedure:
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2010
  4. SilverPhoenix

    SilverPhoenix Bantam Fanatic

    Dec 15, 2009
    Penn Valley, CA
    Quote:I agree with this post! I even stitched up a wild turkey once successfully, and those are considerably stronger/larger/more difficult to handle than chickens. Give it a try, you'll be surprised at how easy it is!
  5. Small Town Girl

    Small Town Girl Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 1, 2008
    Bexley, OH
    My pet chicken was attacked by the neighbors' dog this summer. She had some really nasty tears/puncture wounds and I figured that she would die from shock. I just put her in a box with a blankie in the kitchen and waited for nature to take its course. She came out of it (mostly because she was interested in what we were making for dinner) so I treated her wounds with Neosporin. I also got some Baytril antibiotics from a local vet. If your chicken survives the shock of the attack, your biggest concern will be infection. Keep her wounds clean and try to get some antibiotics. (BTW - I tried several "clever" methods to administer the meds like crushing them up in yogurt and dissolving in water and administering it via an eyedropper. Then I figured out that I could just shove it in a chunk of grape and she would eat it.) Also keep her separate from the other girls because they will attack her if they sense injury/weakness. My chicken lived in the kitchen until the day she flew up onto my stove and ate the heirloom tomatoes that I was planning on canning... She is just fine now and has resumed laying.
  6. CC Lefty

    CC Lefty Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 15, 2009
    San Joaquin Valley, CA
    Thanks all for your feedback. I will check her in the morning and see if I can't stitch her up.

    foltz - the dog was just being a dog. I don't blame it for doing what comes natural. Having said that, if she appears again I have a load of buckshot with her name on it.


  7. CC Lefty

    CC Lefty Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 15, 2009
    San Joaquin Valley, CA

    I went out to retrieve the bird to try and stitch it up as some on the forum suggested. The EMT Gel had coagulated, acting as a scab, so I left her alone and hoped for the best. I'm happy to report that my EE is on her way to a full recovery and is happily ranging alongside the rest of the chickens. She still isn't laying, but I expect that will take some time. It looks like the EMT Gel has done the trick. I would suggest everyone add this to the medicine chest.

  8. crtrlovr

    crtrlovr Still chillin' with my peeps

    Quote:Have never heard of the EMT gel. Where did you obtain it?
  9. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    What's EMT gel? I'm glad she's getting better. Can't blame you , it could and does happen to an awful lot of real good chicken caretakers.
  10. deek248

    deek248 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Gumbo!!.....sorry imma coon ass....we even eat road kill if it has not baked on the asphalt too long lmao:p, no matter
    all kidding aside, shoot the dog:cool:

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