Help! Our chick got a scratch from the cat.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by loudycloudy, Jun 12, 2016.

  1. loudycloudy

    loudycloudy New Egg

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    May 6, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    We are raising four chicks in our house inside a rabbit cage using a heating lamp and covering it up with blankets. The problem is that the cats (there are 3) are always staring at them, but we thought it wouln't be a problem as they cannot get inside the cage. Somehow, though, our youngest cat reached her paw inside the cage far enough to scratch the smallest of the chicks right above her tail.
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    We washed her scratch with peroxide and added neosporin on it when she was dried off. She seems to be eating and acting normally, not distressed. Meanwhile, the cage is now fully covered up so that the cats cannot reach inside. Will she recover quickly from this, or does she need to be separated from the other, bigger chicks to avoid them pecking at it?

    We were mostly worried about something red (not blood, but solid like a vein?) attached to where she was injured. It seems to have mostly gone away by now, but we still don't know what it was or if it is a bad sign. Please respond with any knowledge or advise you have about this situation. I could not find anything related to our problem online, and we'd appreciate some input. Thanks!
     
  2. Poultry parent

    Poultry parent Chillin' With My Peeps

    keep her separated from the other chicks and keep that wound clean!!
    cats a lot of bacteria under their claws, i know because i got cat scratch fever once, smell the wound for signs of infection as well
     
  3. loudycloudy

    loudycloudy New Egg

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    May 6, 2012
    Orange County, CA

    Thank you for the advice. :) We will make sure to keep an eye out to see if the wound is infected.
     
  4. Poultry parent

    Poultry parent Chillin' With My Peeps

    you're welcome! good luck!
     
  5. ladynewtochicks

    ladynewtochicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 21, 2016
    Montana
    My favorite med for things like this is blue Kote. I have yet to have to use it on a chicken(thankfully) but it was one of the first things I asked about when I got them. Once it's dry it stays on for 2-3 days, fights bacteria and fungus.
     
  6. loudycloudy

    loudycloudy New Egg

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    May 6, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    Okay, thanks for the info! I will definitely look into it if the scratch needs more treatment.
     
  7. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 30, 2015
    Cat claws curl into flesh and when they pull back they pull up tissue from deep inside. What you saw was probably muscle tissue. To be honest, if the other chicks are not picking at the wound, keep them together. The chick needs the companionship and comfort of the others. If your cats can get near the chicks this will not be an isolated event and you will come home to dead ones. A blanket is not enough. Put them in a room where the cats can be prevented from entering. At least get wire mesh that the cats can not get their paws through and completely secure it around where the chicks are on all sides. The cats are NOT going to be friends with your chicks. Especially if the cats go outside. Your chicks are nothing but snacks waiting to be eaten and the next paw will hook a chick and drag it through the wire in parts so it can be eaten.
     
  8. loudycloudy

    loudycloudy New Egg

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    May 6, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    Thanks for the info, and for your concern–actually, we additionally blocked off the cage with wood now, and even if the cat were able to reach inside, the gaps are too small for her to pull out the chicks. Since the other chicks did not seem to notice or care about the injury, we left her in there with them so she could stay warm. If the red thing was muscle, is it going to heal or will it do damage to the chick? It seems like it is getting better, but since you pointed out that the cat might've pulled up tissue from beneath her skin, is that more serious than a normal scratch would be?
     
  9. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 30, 2015
    It is more serious than a scratch but birds are fragile things when small and there is nothing you can do about it really. Keep it clean and let it dry and scab over. It will heal. As for the cats, if they can reach in ... no, they will not be able to pull a chick out because the holes are too small for the whole bird to fit through. They will hook their claws into the bird as they just have done already. The bird will be pulled up against the wire and bitten and pulled at until it is pulled out through the hole in pieces.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2016

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