help needed - how to care for chicken after attacked

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by summerjoy, Jul 5, 2011.

  1. summerjoy

    summerjoy New Egg

    Jul 5, 2011
    i've posted a picture of her taken this morning on my page.
    my chicken was attacked by something last night - she's almost 1.5yrs old, a rhode island red. we suspect a cat or fox b/c we know a neighbor has both on her property and they have tried to get into our yard before. this happened after 1am, my husband heard noises in the back yard and let the dogs out to chase whatever it was, i checked the coop and found feathers and then when i went to look where the dogs had run my chicken came running and squawking out of the bushes towards me. she stopped and let me pick her up then seemed to go into shock. all her tail feathers were pulled out and much off of her back, she has a few puncture wounds on her back and one on one wing but she seems to be moving her wings ok. she ate out of my hand last night & this morning as well as drank water i dripped on her beak. i think she may have eaten out of the feeders this morning too and has pooped a good bit in the dog crate i kept her in the rest of the night. i let one of the other chickens, i only have 4, come in and they talked through the cage a little. she was walking around more after i left for work and my husband decided to let her back into the yard some - she is now in the coop nesting box. she looks very rough but seems to be acting ok but probe in pain so not as active as usual. i told him to keep an eye on her with the other chickens in case they pecked at her punctures and i have some concern she could get sun burnt.

    what should i be doing for her? should i wash her wounds with anything in particular or leave them alone? they are not bleeding but are weeping. and if/once she's ok, how long till her feathers should fill back in. she's been eating mostly grower feed b/c 2 of the 4 chickens are only 20 weeks - but the chicks started laying last week so i started mixing the layer feed into the grower feed till it's gone. is there anything special i should feed to her till she's well? looks like there is bruising beneath the skin, maybe from where the feathers were plucked out - should i notice anything with that to know if serious or not?
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2011
  2. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Some basic first aid would be good, maybe wash her wounds gently with mild soapy water or saline, or with a very dilute Betadine or peroxide and water solution. Rinse them off with a little plain water and apply an antibiotic ointment like Neosporin that does not have any "caine" ingredioent (benzocaine, cetacaine, anything that ends in -caine.) People don't usually try to put a dressing on. You might reapply the Neosporin daily for a while.

    If she is in the coop you will want to watch closely that the others don't peck her. Many people use BluKote (or a generic, contains gentian violet) to prevent the others pecking her, and it's also an antiseptic. Another thing to watch for is maggots, from flies laying eggs in her wounds. There is a product designed for horses that prevents this -- sorry, don't know the name, but the clerks should be able to find it if you can't, and you can use it on her.
  3. M.sue

    M.sue Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 29, 2011
    I'd search the for site for info. It's here and someone with experience in a situation like this is most likely to reply. I would definitely wash the the wound, put some medicated ointment on it and watch it closely for infection. Good luck, she'll bounce back!!
  4. tammye

    tammye Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 22, 2010
    flush out her wounds with a mixture of peroxide and water solution 1/2 and 1/2 and put some antibiotic ointment on the wounds, she should do fine. keep her clam and still for a few days also to recover from the shock. You can put some electrolyte solution in her water for some added strenght
  5. summerjoy

    summerjoy New Egg

    Jul 5, 2011
    thanks! i have def been searching the site and other places on the interwebs for help/advice and will continue to do so. i washed her wounds a little last night but my husband thought i should let her be b/c she started shivering...but when i go home for lunch i'll do it again and medicate with your advice.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by