Healing a scraped beak?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by deacons, Oct 6, 2015.

  1. deacons

    deacons Chillin' With My Peeps

    620
    57
    151
    Oct 8, 2013
    New Hampshire
    My poor little Wyandotte hen (Ro) has had a rough summer and early fall. She had a really awful case of bumblefoot that required serious vet intervention, and then went into a heavy molt. Today, while out freeranging, my flock got buzzed by a low flyover from a pair of hawks. The hawks didn't get anyone, thankfully, but in the chaos of them all diving for cover, I think Ro must have collided with a tree trunk or a fencepost and injured her beak.

    When I checked everyone over, the first thing I saw was blood dripping down her beak. I thought maybe the top beak had cracked or chipped badly under her nostril, but on closer inspection, it just looks like a surface scrape, almost like when you skin your knee. Luckily it clotted really quickly and wasn't a massive amount of blood loss- from reading some other threads, sounds like injured beaks can bleed a lot.

    I'm thankful it's nothing serious, but how in the world do I keep this kind of injury clean and keep infection out?

    Within 5 minutes of it happening, it was already this dirty with stuff stuck on it:
    [​IMG]

    I didn't have any saline handy, so I sprayed it off with Vetricyn spray, gently wiped off the debris with some q-tips, and then applied some neosporin. Once cleaned, it didn't look too terrible:
    [​IMG]

    She's in the hospital crate now to hopefully keep dirt out of it while it's still fresh. Will it scab over? I don't like to clean healing wounds too often, but should I be doing anything different because of where this is located?
     
  2. boskelli1571

    boskelli1571 Overrun With Chickens

    2,901
    398
    261
    Mar 7, 2011
    Finger Lakes, NY
    Hi there, I did a 'quick read' from a couple of sites also. It seems like if there is no visible crack it should be ok. If there is a crack it needs repaired. They recommend a vet to see the bird, but honestly, if it's superficial, I would probably try something like 'Nuskin' from the human pharmacy. I would imaging Neosporin (w/o cain) applied at night before roosting would be the best antibiotic to start with. Keep us posted!
     
  3. deacons

    deacons Chillin' With My Peeps

    620
    57
    151
    Oct 8, 2013
    New Hampshire
    Hi @boskelli1571 , thanks for taking the time to share that advice.

    I took another look at her before bedtime, and it was already looking much better. The spot was much smaller already, and had a coagulated look to it. It's basically a little divot on the side of the beak, but I didn't see any cracks or breaks anywhere. I put a little more neosporin on it after cleaning some of the dried blood away.

    I also gave the other girls a better once-over while they were all on the roost. Interestingly, another one of the girls had a chip on the very tip of her beak (which in my experience heals up fine) and had a dent on the "bridge of her nose" if you can picture that on a chicken. She also had a bit of a cut on her comb. That all makes me think maybe they actually just collided head-to-head while scrambling to get under cover.

    They're not talking though, so I guess I'll never know for sure ;)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by