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Found her after days in sub zero temps- recuperation advice?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chickensbythesea, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. chickensbythesea

    chickensbythesea Chirping

    Jan 1, 2011
    I found a hen after she spent 4 days and 3 nights at the Hotel Saab, tucked up behind the engine block. We managed to, after a lot of effort, get her unstuck and inside. Temperatures here have been in the negatives at night, and as far as I can tell, she's not had anything but some snow to drink, and no food.

    She's obviously distressed after the whole being stuck thing, then the nearly hour-long extrication, and has lost most of her weight, but seems to be doing remarkably well all considering.

    So far I've brought her inside, given her some water with a little sugar in it, scrambled eggs, pellets, and some naked juice- it's just pureed fruit and veggies with some wheat grass and spirulina. She gobbled down everything I put in front of her.
    Her bowel movements are nasty, watery and what you'd expect from a girl who hasn't eaten in days. I have noticed that she's not really on the fast track to pooping now that she's got food though.

    What do I need to do to get her back into shape? Just keep giving her extra treats? Are there things I should be looking for? I've had hens wander off, and come back, but never without access to some sort of food/water, and never with these temperatures.

    Also, she's got a bit of engine grease on her, but I'm worried she's too frail and infirm to handle the kind of bath that can get that off. Do I bathe her, and put her through a scrubbing and the stress of a bath, do I try and cover as much as I can with a saddle for a few days, THEN bathe her, or just leave it be? I don't really want her preening and cleaning that with her mouth, she's got enough problems right now.

  2. nivtup

    nivtup Songster

    Apr 24, 2008
    Shelton Washington
    I would think Food, Water, and Warmth.

    Sounds like you are doing everything you can.
  3. Rivers

    Rivers In the Brooder

    Oct 3, 2010
    Something fatty + high in protein sounds good.

    How about some mealworms in a suet ball? My hens were gobbling down fat balls during the cold weather.

    Perhaps some meat scraps and of course, grass if you can find it. The grass should "normalise" the droppings I think.
  4. spiritdance

    spiritdance Songster

    Dec 13, 2010
    Great advise here. I'd only add that you might want to offer some plain yogurt for the probiotics. Otherwise, lots of treats 'n' hugs should do it. BTW, if you have any diatomaceous earth you can dust that on the grease, let it sit a few minutes, then brush/rub if off, and it will remove most of the grease without stressing her too much.

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