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Frozen bird, but still alive...barely.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Andora, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. Andora

    Andora Songster

    Aug 26, 2008
    Lexington, Kentucky
    I found one of my younger birds (around 4 months old) laying in the snow. I picked her up and her feet were in a solid block of snow/ice! She was struggling to hold her head up. She's a half crested bird, and I haven't had great luck with this mix being very hardy. She's the last survivor of the hatch.

    I brought her inside and tried to decide what to do with her. I had to soak her feet and legs in a tub of warm water for twenty minutes before the ice melted! One of her toes is swollen huge. I feel so bad for her! I slowly gave her a syringe of warm water, and then a syringe of mixed berry juice hoping to perk her up. She's spasmed a couple of times, but that's about it. She looks dead other than an occasional twitch. She isn't even shivering. I wrapped her in a towel and held the lizard's heat lamp over her for 10 minutes at a time, several times.

    Is there anything else you all can think of for me to do to help her? Poor chickie. [​IMG] At least she doesn't seem like she's suffering. She just looks like she's asleep. Do you think she'll ever wake up?

  2. Fudgie

    Fudgie Hatching Queen - Got Fudge?

    Don't warme her up too quickly. Honey water will give her some energy. HUGS is all I can do!
  3. Cindiloohoo

    Cindiloohoo Quiet as a Church Mouse

    Dec 19, 2009
    Southwest TN
    She may have hypothermia. You never can tell, she may perk up. I'd hold out hope if she was healthy before this incident. They are pretty hardy animals. Warm her slowly, not too much at once. The room temp inside should be sufficient to thaw her. Too much will just add shock. I hope she gets better!
  4. Andora

    Andora Songster

    Aug 26, 2008
    Lexington, Kentucky
    I think she just died. [​IMG] She was too frozen. I did warm her slowly though! Her body warmed up, but she never perked up. I'm not 100% sure she's dead, so she's on the top of the bookshelf wrapped in a towel, safe from my cats and dogs, on the off chance she stops being stiff and comes back to life...here in a little while I'll see if she's stiff. I'm 99.9% sure she's dead.

    This is the second hen I've lost to freezing weather in the past two weeks. The the other one was my very favorite hen. It's so unusually cold out, I wasn't prepared for below 0 wind chills because Kentucky usually doesn't have that!
  5. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    Sorry to read of your lose. Last year I had a buff orpington pullet get locked out of the coop. I found her frozen solid lying in front of the door. That night it had gotten to -10 with wind chills down to -40. It makes you feel somehow inadequate as a flock raiser. However, if you are going to raise birds you will lose some no matter what you do so just keep doing the best you can.
  6. ChickBond 007

    ChickBond 007 Licensed to Cull

    Feb 26, 2009
    Madison County, Iowa
    [​IMG] I'm so sorry to hear about your loss.
  7. ruth

    ruth Life is a Journey

    Jul 8, 2007
    Woodville, MS
    I have brought many "dead" hypothermic birds back to life by using a blow dryer set on low heat. It takes nearly a half hour but you will see them slowly start to move their feet if held upside down and other little signs of life. Only once I have them fully awake do I try and give them any water. Then I only give a drop at a time of luke warm water in their beak, using my fingernail. So far every one has fully revived. And these were birds that by all appearances were fully dead. No movement, semi-stiff and cold.

    I've kind of learned that if they are cold and found stiff and lifeless they are usually just hypothermic and can be revived. They won't have any sign of life, no sign of breathing, no eye movement. But....they won't have a stiff neck and legs that can't be bent.

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