Help she is missing two nails?!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by heiditam, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. heiditam

    heiditam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I noticed that one of my hens is missing two nails?! You know that longer middle toe? Well on BOTH of her feet, she is missing the nail to her long toe. On both feet! ?????? She seems otherwise fine, no signs of injury, no scabs or blood. Where did her nails go?! Do they fall off? Was she injured? Ideas? Help?
     
  2. StephensonC

    StephensonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I rescued one that was missing all her nails, except the back ones. I'm not sure what happened with her. I know she had a bad case of scaly leg mites and bumblefoot. I was worried too when I noticed it because I wondered how it happened and how she could successfully scratch. I'm thinking the mites caused mine because they were so bad. I've since treated it and she seems to get along just fine now. Her nails are starting to grow back and she's starting to have normal looking feet again. They look funny without those nails don't they?

    I would try to identify the cause and go from there. Are yours free range? Could she have gotten her nails stuck in something laying around, and maybe got pulled out that way? Have you checked for leg mites? Either way, you could soak her feet in warm epsom salt water for about 10 minutes. I even use a toothbrush to brush them when soaking. It helps to loosen up the dirt, gunk, and the mites(if any). It will help you get a better visual of her toes and possibly see if there is any irritation. If there is, spray with some Veterycin 2-3 times a day. If you see signs of mites, dip her feet and legs in olive oil each day for about a week. Change out the bedding and spray your coop and roosting bars. Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014
  3. heiditam

    heiditam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks :) she does not appear to have leg mites. They do free range and there is a big pile of wood and brush and old trees they love to play on-just the last two days I have noticed them really hanging out there more so maybe? How would one come out-what is a common culprit/what do they get stuck in? Will they grow back?
     
  4. StephensonC

    StephensonC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It is common also, sometimes when roosting bars are too high. When they jump down they can land hard and it actually breaks the nail, especially with heavier breeds. Sometimes they can loose them during a scuffle or when the rooster mates with them, or anytime they put lots of pressure on their foot. I guess they can stump their toes the way we stump ours on something too. Some people actually trim their nails to prevent breakage during such times. With all the searching I've done, I've never came across anyone that really knew why their chicken lost a nail, but it appears to be common. As for the nail growing back, it's taking quite awhile, but mine is slowly getting hers back.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014
  5. heiditam

    heiditam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They do have a very high roost bar...and she is my largest girl.

    So I caught her and examined her. Her legs look really great otherwise. I cleaned her off, and I was all ready to put blu-kote on the tips, but...there is no scab or hole or anything. The toes are completely rounded and covered in scales. It is like there was never a nail there, and I am feeling really dense like I may have just never noticed that she was missing her nails or perhaps she lost them a while back and they grew over like that. :/ Her legs just recently got bigger, and I have had her 2 months, so maybe it is just now obvious? I don't know-I was just surprised that her little stumps just look like the rest of her leg-no hole, no scab, just small scales. ???! and her legs are really great looking otherwise-clean, smooth scales, nice color. I am stumped no pun intended!
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    If she is large, what breed is she?, she will be more prone to losing toe nails. Almost all my Brahmas have lost almost all their nails. No, they won't grow back, but they seem to be able to get along okay without them.
     
  7. heiditam

    heiditam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She is a barred rock. She is meaty-I picked her up today and she is quite substantial.
     
  8. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    When I saw that my heavy breeds were having problems with the higher perch, I built some low ones for them, just a few inches high. This also helps to prevent foot injuries leading to bumble foot.
     
  9. heiditam

    heiditam Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks :) I may consider getting rid of the highest one and forcing them to use the middle one.
     

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