Frostbite on foot?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jmmeye4, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. jmmeye4

    jmmeye4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 15, 2013
    Hi all,

    have a now 5 month old hen that I bought from a breeder and she seems to be really limping. At first due to pealing scales I thought scaly leg mites however the scales were not lifted. I soaked in water and the outside of the scales came off revealing three black toes on one foot. They are all close to the nail and look like a mummy. Knuckles of foot swollen and the bird refuses to walk if at all possible causing poop to stick to the feathers. The toes look similar to the images below without the blood.

    If I quoted this wrong please tell me and I will correct.

     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    Keep her inside, soak her feet twice a day in warm epsom salts, then dry, and apply Neosporin ointment to the toes. The toes will fall off in time, but this may help with infection. She should be able to get around just losing the tips of the toes, but keep an eye at so she doesn't get picked on. Take her around the flock daily, but wait until her feet are dry and warm.
     
  3. jmmeye4

    jmmeye4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 15, 2013
    Thanks for the information. I can only bring her in the garage if so as our dog would think that she is a puppy and play with her (55lbs English Bulldog named "Crabcake"). I have been watching the feet no change, and she was being picked on at first nothing a little fluffy butt swat would not fix. She got the point, the others saw and now they get along. Checked this morning and no signs of infection so am very hopeful. I will put the Neosporin on the toes but she seems to hope along the ground or walks a little stiff. I moved the food farther away from the coop so as not to have them claw at the same spot all day and that seems to make her more mobile. Any guess at to how long until they fall off? All the damage is to the final joint before the ankle area and there is definitely no blood/feeling to the area.

    On a side note the Rooster seems to ignore her and only her could it be for this reason?
     
  4. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you have a cage to put her in,this way you can bring her inside home? I too have huge dogs(over 150 lbs)and keep any injured birds inside home in a cage,never had any issues with dogs/cats.

    Fluffy butt swats will not stop pecking/picking at her wounds.

    Keep her food/water close to her as she will have difficulty walking,this is why a cage is so beneficial.
     
  5. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive True BYC Addict

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    I would skip the baths then, since it is too cold outside. I have only seen a little frostbite on combs, but there are quite a few this year that have posted about their chickens losing toes or feet. It may take a month to 6 weeks to lose the toes. Here are a couple of threads to ead and have picture describing their chickens with frostbite:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/282509/severely-frostbitten-toes-update-graphic-pictures
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/852344/necrotic-toes-graphic-pics
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/288756/frostbitten-toes-pics-update-just-stumps
     
  6. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Don't bother to fuss over her toes if they look like the toes in the pic. Those toes are dead and will fall off in due time. How much time? Who knows? They will fall off when they are desiccated enough to slough off naturally, or they will get jarred off in some incident. Nobody can predict exactly when that will happen. Stop with the Neosporin and all other petroleum based products. You want to allow them to completely dry out, so they will come off. There is no point to soaking or topically medicating dead meat.

    Alternate diagnoses other than frostbite- injuries due to rats or pecking by other birds.

    As far as the poopy butt goes- that's going to happen in a bird that doesn't/can't roost. If the poop can't fall away from the body at night then it is going to stick to the butt feathers. Trimming the pouffy feathers may help to minimize the dirty appearance. I had a batch of birds that never learned to roost, and the way I found to combat the filthy butts was to place a wide board low to the floor just elevated a few inches. That few inches was enough to allow the poop to fall away.

    Your roo is ignoring her because he can probably tell she has some issue going on, as well as her being relatively new to the flock. That won't last. He will be able to tell when she is feeling better. Then she is going to be fair game. In the meantime, I would not separate her from the flock unless absolutely necessary for her safety. It is a very difficult thing to integrate a single bird back into an existing flock. Very difficult. It would be best if she can stay with the flock. She may be low man on the totem pole, but she can work her way up, if so inclined. It is hard for a disabled and isolated bird to integrate successfully. Stack the deck in her favor by allowing her to convalesce with her peeps.

    I hope this answered all your questions. Good luck.
     

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