Found an lost/abandoned chicken - Now what?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ScotianChick, Nov 4, 2012.

  1. ScotianChick

    ScotianChick Songster

    Dec 27, 2010
    My mother and I were driving to her house and on the way we found a chicken! We were very surprised, it was in front of the entry to an industrial site on a very busy road, near the ocean where the ducks hang out. There is one person on the road with chickens but it's at least a kilometre away. She is young. I inspected her. She looks like a red star or a general brown egg layer. She's got tiny combs, her vent appears as if she has never laid an egg. Her feet look sore. Not sure what that is. That's my concern. She's got a weepy black spot, one on each foot. One seems more sore. She is holding it to her a body more than the other. Looks like she has walked on pavement a lot.

    She is really, really cute. When I pet her she purrs. So what is the best way to get this girl thriving again and to fix up those feet?
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I've not experienced it myself but do a search for bumblefoot and see if that's her problem.
  3. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Keep her quarantined for a month if possible, so you don't give your hens diseases if she has any.

    (It is possible for her to be an asymptomatic carrier of respiratory disease, however and she would pass your quarantine- some will put a "sacrificial" hen in with the new one to see if she becomes ill after being exposed to the new hen.

    Also treat for mites/lice, and repeat in 7 days. (I use permethrin myself- they sell dust and dilutable liquid).
    For the bumblefoot, if you have nothing on hand but Epsom salts, I'd give her a soak in those (her feet) but don't leave her alone or she might fall asleep and drown. I only mention that because I have read others speaking of Epsom salts with bumblefoot.
    here is one thread
  4. ScotianChick

    ScotianChick Songster

    Dec 27, 2010
    I've never had to de-lice before. It's not been a problem in my neck of the woods (or really much of Nova Scotia). I could check Shur-gain for this? What do lice look like on a bird?

    It doesn't quite look like bumblefoot but it could be developing. The sores are on her middle toes. Her main foot area does not seem to have Bumblefoot but it seems a bit sore. Like she has been walking on rough stuff.

    I have a couple old birds I could introduce to her.
  5. Give her a day at the Spa, soak her feet in warm water and Epsom salts, gently scrub the feet with soap & water and see how much is dirt & what might be something else. After drying her feet, put some ointment on them...keep an eye on the feet and repeat if needed . Pictures would be great. She should like having her feet soaked. It's hard to say how far it's gone without seeing it, main thing is to clean her feet up to see where to begin.
  6. ScotianChick

    ScotianChick Songster

    Dec 27, 2010
    She's so sleepy. I will definitely post photos in the morning. She is warming up to me. Tomorrow I hope after some breakfast, I can get her bathed and make a little spot for her by the fire :)
  7. maryhysong

    maryhysong Songster

    Aug 24, 2012
    Claypool, Arizona
    There seems to be a small gland in the foot, middle toe area that gets impacted with crud, especially when hens are kept on hard packed surfaces or have inappropriate roosts. This thread discusses it in some of the beginning pages;

    And I recently had one and posted pics, on page 225 of that thread. I would also give unpasturized apple cider vinegar in her water, wood ashes for her to dust in, which will kill mites and lice and consider giving fermented feed, see this thread about FF

    At the very least give her something with active cultures like plain live yogurt or buttermilk to help jumpstart her intestinal health and immune system.
  8. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I have only dealt with mites, not lice. But mites look like black pepper and lice supposedly look straw colored. Look under the wings and around the vent area. If you bathe her you should notice whether bugs start coming off in the bath water. You don't want those bugs in your home- best to do it somewhere where the bugs if there are any, come off outside your home if possible.

    Also if bathing a chicken in winter, always blow them dry and allow them to sit in the garage or something before going back out in the elements after a bath.

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