Have an unusual problem with Brahma hen

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by azygous, Nov 7, 2011.

  1. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I'm just taking a chance that this is the best place to post this. It's not an emergency, injury or illness. But my Light Brahma hen Nancy, four years old, has pockets on the bottoms of her feet that collect balls of mud, pebbles, sand grains, etc, and they stay until every week or so, I dig them out.

    I've had other people insist she walks funny, like her feet hurt, but she's a huge Brahma girl, she waddles.

    Have other people had this problem with a chicken? Is there anything I can put into these tiny, but deep, pockets to prevent them from collecting debris?

    So far, it doesn't appear that the tissue is irritated, but it does look like it would be uncomfortable.
     
  2. Muggsmagee

    Muggsmagee Menagerie Mama

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    Can you get a picture for reference? Are the pockets from old injuries? One suggestion would be to change what she walks on, unless she is a free ranger. Meaning, put sand in her run if it is merely rock. You could give her feet a warm water soak, and apply an ointment (vaseline for example) followed by vet wrap that she keeps on for a week or two will help smooth the pockets out. Prevention seems your best option. [​IMG]

    Keep us posted.
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I use sand in the run, keep it immaculate, and she also free-ranges. These pockets seem to be a feature of her anatomy. Her feet are otherwise healthy feet, no bumblefoot or anything. The pockets are about 1/16th inch wide and about the same in depth, just large and deep enough for stuff to accumulate in them walking around.

    I can't post a photo because they're all asleep right now and besides, it's snowing to beat the band out there and I'm warm inside.

    She does get warm foot soaks, and doesn't mind when I manipulate the webs between her toes to expel the balls of mud or poop.

    I'm wondering if there's something soft and inert that I can pack into these pockets? I don't think that there's really any way to shrink them as it's just the way the bottoms of her feet happen to wrinkle and fold.
     
  4. Muggsmagee

    Muggsmagee Menagerie Mama

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    Understandably we are posting at night, and I would not expect you to take a picture immediately. The fact that it is snowing where you are makes me happy for once to be in Central New York...no snow yet! [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I'll check back in to see if you get the chance to post a pic...it's hard to grasp an idea of what you are looking at. My imagination can lead me all over the map. Let me check in with a few Brahma friends and see if they have some experience with this. You might want to post this on the Brahma thread, too.
     
  5. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I thought I would give my $0.02 on this. My Cochins have this problem as well. Like the dent in the bottom of their feet collect all sorts of stuff (not to mention the feathers!). Anyway, its usually worse when its wet. I've never scrapped or soaked their feet, though I do check them often. The debris works its way off once its dried or they take it off themselves if its bothering them, which leaves room to collect new debris. How long have you been cleaning her feet? Just wondering, because I would think this is something she should be doing on her own. I've personally seen my chickens hold a leg out and pick something right off the bottom of their feet. Anyhoo- chickens step in poo, then they walk through all kinds of other things that stick to their nasty little chicken feet. Good luck.
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    [​IMG]

    Here's a close up of Nancy's lovely foot pad. Note the two pockets full of debris. These are DEEP pockets. I can only expel the foreign matter by manipulating the opposite side of her fleshy webs between her toes, pushing the matter out from applying pressure from the top of her foot. There's no way she would be able to do this for herself, even if she wasn't a laid back matron of royalty.

    A thought sprung into my head last night, and I was posting it just as a power failure robbed me of my internet connection. (Big snow storm here in southern Colorado) If I can find a good spider web, I could gather the silk and use it as a filler to pack into her deep pockets. I imagine it would stay since everything else has no problem staying. And it's a natural substance, soft and pliable and shouldn't irritate her tissue. It just might work. I shall post an update if it does.

    Now I need to find me a spider web.
     
  7. debs_flock

    debs_flock Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:The EXACT reason it grosses me out when I hear of people that eat chicken feet. [​IMG]

    To the OP, I've never seen anything like that, but I would think she could pick that out by herself. I think you've just gotten the princess used to the royal treatment (kind of like when my husband asks me to clip his toenails for him, barring paralysis, that is NOT going to happen).

    [​IMG]

    Deb
     

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