Eye injury due to hawk attack

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ursus, Sep 13, 2008.

  1. ursus

    ursus Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 2, 2008
    Seattle Wa.
    Ok, so here's the background.

    Yesterday one of my RIR's was attacked by a hawk. Luckily my wife was home, heard the chicken scream, and ran outside to find a large hawk on top of the hen. She kicked the hawk and it dropped the chicken and flew up into a tree.

    The chicken may have some puncture wounds on her back, but no open wounds or gashes. The bad part is that it appears that her cornea was literally ripped off by the hawk's talon's. My wife immediately brought her inside and sanitized the eye and face area, checked her out, and prepared a basement recovery area with food, water, and bedding material.

    Today the eye was swollen shut and she seemed a little shaken but otherwise just angry about being separated from the other chickens. We returned her to the coop.

    We have since covered the previously open run to prevent future attacks. (we live in an urban area and had never seen a hawk near home before yesterday)

    My instinct is that with the wound having been quickly sanitized there is little else we can do except let nature take its course. But I thought I would appeal to the collective wisdom and ask:

    Is there anything else I can do for her?
    Is there anything we should have done but missed?
    If infection becomes apparent do I have any options other than putting her down?

    We are so bummed! This is our favorite chicken! We named her "Houdini" since she keeps finding new and inventive ways to escape and insists on laying her eggs in a nest she's built in the yard rather than in the coop nest box with the others.

    Thanks for any advice you can offer!
  2. dlhunicorn

    dlhunicorn Human Encyclopedia

    Jan 11, 2007
    you will need to flush copiously the eye with sterile saline and apply a suitable anitibotic eye ointment daily.
    re the puncture wounds... you also need to flush those out with sterile saline also (into the puncture) and apply neosporin in there also.
    You can make your own sterile saline if necessary by boiling 1/4 tsp of salt in one quart of water for five minutes.
    If your bird seems listless this this is a sign of shock so you would need to add electrolytes/vt to the water.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by