Help! Chicken got stuck in a tree by her wing!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by UrbanFarmerGirl, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. UrbanFarmerGirl

    UrbanFarmerGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 18, 2010
    Western Washington
    We free range our 4 chickens all day while we are at work. Today my husband came home to find one of our barred rocks hanging from a shrub/tree in our yard. The chicken was hanging a couple of feet off the ground, with her wing caught between two branches which were very close together. The wing was caught by the upper area (not the 'armpit', but a bit further down, still close to the body). I think she had been there for quite awhile- there was actually poop and an egg on the ground underneath her. My husband thought she was dead because she wasn't even moving. He got her down, and she was actually alive, and interested in eating, drinking, and walking around. The only problem now is that her wing is hanging, totally limp. She steps on it when she walks. I can't see any cuts, or feel any broken bones, but she seems unable to move it. I fold it up for her, and as soon as I let go it flops down. When she flaps her good wing, the limp one doesn't move. She steps on it without seeming to feel where it is. I am SO WORRIED. It seems dislocated. Has anyone seen a similar injury? Can I somehow pop it back in? Will it heal on its own over time? Is it going to get worse? What do I do? I don't know if I should separate her (is it ok for her to sleep outside? Will the other chickens be mean to her?) Help please!!!!
  2. ND Sue

    ND Sue Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2009
    I would take her to a Vet in the morning. With humans, if something is dislocated they need xrays to tell if it went in correctly when they pop it back in place. I would hate to mess with something like that and possibly tear tendons or ligaments in the process. They may already be torn though. Poor thing! I'm sorry, no suggestions here, but to go to the vet.
  3. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    Separate her for sure...maybe with a calm friend. Contact a vet and do not try to pop it back in yourself. You could use vet wrap and tape in the folded position so it does not drag when she walks. Good luck with her.
  4. WhetzelMomma

    WhetzelMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 8, 2009
    yep. I'd say there's a pretty good chance she's dislocated her wing.
  5. UrbanFarmerGirl

    UrbanFarmerGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 18, 2010
    Western Washington
    Thanks for the feedback. This is terrible. I feel so bad for the poor chicken. Does anyone have any advice about medical care? I live next to UC Davis, which is an Ag school, so I am trying to see if they have something affordable. My vet only sees pet animals, so it will be 40 dollars just to have her looked at. The feed store guy tends to have the mentality that you can always cull and eat an injured bird. We got these ladies because we don't have too much money and wanted to have eggs for free, and I honestly can't afford to pay hundreds of dollars on her, but I don't know want to end her life because of a wing injury either. She is very young, very sweet, and lays regularly. Is there some middle ground? What do folks recommend? Are some vets cheaper than others? How much do people pay for this kind of thing?
  6. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Well me personally, I would probably try to pop it back in myself. As far as I know no vets would help me and there is that cost issue. Any torn ligaments will either heal on their own or they won't [​IMG] it's not like I'm gonna pay for repair surgery. If they are already torn beyond natural repair it doesn't seem like they are causing her any unusal amounts of pain that would make putting her down the best option.

    Definitely wrap her wing up to her body with vet wrap, either to keep it from dragging, or if you work on her yourself to allow it to heal up before she tries to use it.
  7. FlipFlopFarmer

    FlipFlopFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    well, this is what i would do. take it, or leave it. with animals, if something looks askew, stand at the center of ur bird, and look/feel for symetry. secondly, and very slowly. check for range of motion on the uninjured side, followed by the injured side. look under the wing of the injured side, again comparing. look for ruptured blood vessels under the skin, jagged fractures under the skin, anything other than smooth injuries and simple tissue bruising. after having gathered this info, if u have a simple dislocation, there is a possibility that you are able to relocate it. Hold bird still, i reccomend with towel under and on a stable surface. i would have somone place hands on either side of the breast. monitor breathing and pain response and react accordingly. you stand near tail feathers with left hand on joint u suspect is dislocated, with ur right hand, pull the wing out and down, slowly, at the same time apply gentle steady pressure with your left (joint) hand, now, with the wing still extended, move the wing towards the chickens head, slowly and still applying left hand pressure. if you feel a smooth pop, ur in. afterwards without letting the chicken go, wrap the injured wing against the body with vet wrap and say a lil chicken prayer. maybe some tylan, and electrolyte if u have it.
    I have seen, and personally relocated a dog hip this way ( with different range of motion) in a vet clinic setting, without sedation, but with slow steady hands and good help. each situation is different. this is only my advice if it is a simple dislocation. You may also google chicken anatomy and look at the joint structure to better understand range of motion prior to attempting. the bandaging afterwards is to allow the ligaments/tendons to recoil and regain strength and elasticity.

    good luck. oh p.s. the example i gave was for the chickens anatomical right wing, change the words right and left in accordance with the injured side
  8. BunnyMomma

    BunnyMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 17, 2010
    Olin, North Carolina
    Sorry about her wing. I had a similar problem once and I made a body sock from a pair of pantyhose, (Lord knows i don't wear them anymore.) I cut the toe out and cut a section long enough to go from the neck to the legs, put the sock over the bird and made leg holes and a hole for the undamaged wing. I secured the neck part by fashioning a loose knot from the top section. I tried to keep her wing as stable as possible. I kept the bird in an area where she was safe from predators and gave her plenty of regular food and water. I also fed her plenty of tomatoes that have Vit. C . Within 10 days she was well. Her use of the wing was limited at first, but then she regained about 60% mobility.
    I hope this helps.
    Good luck!
    Bunny in NC [​IMG]
  9. UrbanFarmerGirl

    UrbanFarmerGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 18, 2010
    Western Washington
    Thanks for those ideas. That gives me some courage to try to fix it myself. I've been looking online at lots of different sites and info, and it seems like most people who share my school of thought (don't want to pay for x rays or surger, and don't want to cull needlessly) tend to try at home fixes. I think I will try to pop it in, and if I can't seem to figure that out, people seem to advise that you can wrap the wing next to the body for a couple of weeks, and it may end up not working correctly because it heals to be a little stiff or gimpy, but the chicken wont drag it and wont be in pain, and they can live with one good wing. Anyone who has done this before or has other ideas please feel free to share- I'm just learning as I go here and always appreciate help!
  10. Pheonix

    Pheonix Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 11, 2010
    San Jose, Ca
    Yeah, I would try moving it around and see if you can feel a popping. You can pull it straight out from the bad joint to see if it will go back in, but just wrap it after that with a sticky ace bandage. Over the hurt wing but under the good wing so she can still flap the good one. Keep the wrapping it for 2 weeks and see what happens.

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