HELP!!! Banty SCALPED by flock mates!


10 Years
Mar 5, 2013
West Virginia
My Banty Squeaker was COMPLETELY scalped by her flock mates while I was at work today.
There seems to be NO skin left on her head or back of her neck. Her ears are gone and there are peices of skin hanging off. She is still alive and to my amazement eating but I don't see how she can survive. As I said there is no skin on her head or neck and there seems to be a small leaking hole on the back of her neck. I don't know what to do! I ran to the nearest store and bought antiseptic cream and covered her in it but it seems to be melting right off the skin(or in this case muscle). Also when she stretches her head out there is a huge gap between her skin and muscles at the base of her neck. All vets offices are closed until morning and I'm unsure as whether they'll treat a chicken anyway. PLEASE somebody help.
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A similar thing happened to my little banty roo and my grandmother's banty roo just after. It's a thing. They both pulled through and were fine. I cleaned his head with iodine and then kept Dr. Christopher's Complete Tissue and Bone massage oil on it. It it a bit pricey, but cheaper than a vet visit and works like a charm! Oliver's skin regrew beautifully and quickly. I highly recommend it if you can get it. She should be fine. Just feed her a nutritious diet and keep her head clean. And she'll learn to lover you from all your one on one care. :) Best of luck!
Somehow chickens can heal themselves from the most awful injuries. Clean the wound with weak betadine, hibiclens, or soap and water. A one time use of hydrogen peroxide would be okay instead. Then apply neosporing or triple antibiotic ointment all over it. Do not bandage. Put her in a box or crate in your house because flies will lay maggot larvae in the wounds. Keep her quiet, and noise down. Give her extra protein (eggs, tuna, ect.) to heal. If she makes it through the first day or two, she should be okay. Your vet might prescribe an antibiotic.
She's still kicking so I'm running to the store to get betadine and some triple antibiotic cream. Just noticed the one I grabbed in a hurry earlier has lidocaine so I'll need to wash it off....I'm just so afraid of getting something where it shouldn't be. I'm worried about getting water down in that gap or where her ears should be. Poor Squeaks. She'll never hear again but at least she can see. Somehow her eyes managed to avoid serious injury even though her face is gone.
I'll see about a vet visit in the morning if she makes it. Maybe let them clean her up. I can't bear to cut the shreds hanging off her. Barely managed to put cream on her without throwing up. But I'll do it for her. I'll give her a chance. If she can hang on and still be eating with this injury then it's the least I can do for her. I'll update in the morning if there's any changes or after a vet visit....Thank you both for the advice. Maybe she'll make it afterall and be my house chicken. She loved to roost on my kitchen table anyway. lol
Good luck to you, and let us know how it goes. I don't know of any vets who see chickens in Huntington or Chas., but maybe your regular vet will do okay.
I cleaned the wound as best I could with betadine. She wouldn't let me stretch her neck out to get it all but most has been cleaned. I tried putting neosporin on it but it wouldn't stick so I completely drenched some gauze with it and put a single thin layer of it over as much as I could. She can't see anymore as her face is swollen now.
I'm hoping she doesn't lose sight in both her eyes if she pulls through. Hopefully she can hold on until morning so I can take her to the vet to get cleaned up and a possible shot of antibiotics...
The neopsporin sticks better if you can gently blot the water off. It is for infection, but also to keep the wound moist. Swelling is going to be a problem for a couple of days, so make her food soupy with water (like oatmeal) so that she can find it easily and keep up her strength. Raw egg can be added to the food for extra protein.
I got her home from the vet. Vet said barring infection she believes Squeak has a good chance. She trimmed off the dead skin and actually pulled the skin up from her back and stretched it to cover her neck and most of her head. Shes not certain if it will stay but she thinks it will. Now instead of a zombie chicken I have Frankensteins monster chicken. Still shes alive for now and for that I'm grateful. Shes on 2 antibiotics twice a day and they gave me a rinse to rinse the stitches with. Shes still groggy even though I've had her home for a couple hours.
One of our chicks was scalped about 4 weeks ago when she flew into the wrong broody hen's pen. Very similar wounds to the ones you described and we couldn't image that she could survive. We cleaned with saline solution then applied Blu-Kote, which can be found with the horse meds at TSC, gave her some sav-a-chick with a syringe, separated her, kept her warm for a couple days then returned her to correct mama. Four weeks later, she is flourishing. Her feathers have even grown back. Her right eye is slightly crooked, and she still has a small bald spot, but amazingly the skinless area just filled in from the outside in.
Good luck and so sorry this happened.

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