hen with frost bite feet need help asap!!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by therealsilkiechick, Jan 12, 2008.

  1. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    i have a silkie hen who needs help asap. about a mth ago when our temps dropped to freezeing we had to bring waters home to unthaw them as they where solid ice.(i raise my flock outside of town at a friends house). we put in pans of water for them so they had fresh water till we could get the gal self waterers all unthawed and back to them the next day.

    temp dropped worse. the hen decided to bath in the pan of water and stayed in to long and got stuck and the next day when the roads cleared we could get off our hill again to take the waters back to them we found the hen frozen in her coop in the pan of water. her feet where froze to a block of ice i had to break her free of. we warmed her and dried her and she spent the night at home with us but apparently we where to late she had been in it too long in to cold of weather. she did fine the next day but wabbled a little the first few hours since we kept her off her feet as much as possible. she was lonely without her coop mates so we took her back over, after that she was fine till today no signs of anything till now we have been keeping an eye on her.

    today when we went to feed and water everyone again we noticed her limping. we checked her feet and some parts are solid/hard feeling like freezedried and very dry looking as if she has frostbite and they are dieing. they are not black that we can tell but she is a silkie so that's hard to tell but i asume it is the start of them to die off. she doesn't look to have surface frostbite or anything like that, she seems healthy other than her feet bothering her and she is looseing balance.

    i don't want to cull her she is a very loved pet, i know i can never show her again but the thought of putting her down just kills me she is only about a year old and has so much to live for. i would do anything i can to help her i just don't know what i need to do. if she looses what has been frostbite it will be the fronts of her toes and about a 1/3 of the pads of her feet. first thing i need to know is does she need her toes amputated or anything? will the frostbite or any kind of infection spread? sorry i'm new to this only ever had to deal with a friends roos haveing frostbite on combs before, nothing this bad. with snowie i don't know what to do or where to start but i know she needs help asap there is no poultry vets here i'm the closest thing she has.

    is there anything we can do if she looses both of her feet or most of them i doubt she will ever be able to walk again it will be stubbs. is there anyway to build something for her that would help her to not be so crippled if she makes it through all this, like prostec feet or something? for now she is seperated where she is warm and comfy but i don't know how to help her so i need ur help and advice. i know she will be a handicap for life if she pulls through all this but i can't see turning my back on her when she needs someone most i'm willing to be there for her through everything to take care of her i just need help getting there.
  2. Poor baby.

    I would think that a vet would be the best bet to find out how much damage has been done. Other than that, I'd would just keep an eye on her and see what happens and take it as it comes. But I didn't write to give medical advice because I don't know much about that. Something did just pop into my head. How about a little cayenne?

    Years ago, cayenne can be used to help circulation - so perhaps adding a little cayenne to her food would help get blood to whatever living tissue she has left in her feet. I know that my parrot loves dried peppers so I assume it isn't bad for her.

    Now, what I originally was going to say... we had a duck that ended up crippled for the last two years of her life. We had to carry her around, etc, etc. She seemed perfectly happy sitting there watching the world go by.

    I've never seen fake chicken feet for limbless hens but it wouldn't surprise me if something couldn't be devised - afterall "necessity is the mother of invention."
  3. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    She very well may have long term damage...I would do a general search on frostbite treatment on line and treat her as such. Maybe massaging the feet, placing in wamr water daily-but I would think most damage is irreverible. I would watch for infection and necrotic tissue. Im sure she'll adapt to her situation and live on. I have a crippled hen and she is the queen.
  4. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    my vets will only deal with dogs and household pets unfortunately no birds or reptiles as they are considered exatics here. the closest one is to far away for me to take her to and i don't have that kind of money to get there and for the bill they would give.

    i feel so helpless and i love her so much i just pray she makes it through this ok. she is so loveing and beautiful and so young it is so sad to see her hurting knowing what may lye ahead for her.

    i didn't know pepper could do that but it is sure worth a try to help her some so i will get some and add it to her feed.

    i have seen and heard of many chickens who have stubs i know they can life fine if they make it through the hard part and have a happy long life later. what made me think of that is i know i have seen posts about it here or the other byc i think is where i saw it. i just can't find the posts. i have had to amputate quail toes before from coon attackes but nothing so fully intact so i didn't know wheather to let nature take it's course and see or if i had to worrry about gang green if the parts are dieing since they where frostbiten. so far she shows no infection or anything, eating and poo are normal.
  5. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    yes i agree the damage is not reversible and yes by looking at her i know it will be long term damage. everything is closed here but i have terymycin on had should i start her on an antibiotic just to be safe incase she developes an infection from her feet? i don't like to give antibiotics unless i know they need it but i'm wondering if she should have it as a prevenative. i also have vitamins and elecrtolytes(sp) we have started her on those. will do also as you advise aswell, thanks so much!
  6. Yes, cayenne can do alot of things. I knew a child once saved from dying after eating a poison mushroom with it. But what made me think of it was that some friends who have diabetes use it to help with the circulation in their damaged feet. It can't cure dead tissue but it might help keep tissue 'on the edge' from dying. I would assume it could help chicken tissue as well.
  7. Pinenot

    Pinenot Songster

    Sep 11, 2007
    Can you post some pictures? I had to deal with burnt feet this year and I did have to do some amputations. I would assum...that frost burn would be similar as heat burn. You can add a small amount of asprin to her water. I would bring her home and if she needs a companion, bring a friend.
  8. AK-Bird-brain

    AK-Bird-brain I gots Duckies!

    May 7, 2007
    Sterling, Alaska
    there is no cure only prevention!

    once frostbite has occured the tissue is more susceptible, so If you brought her in and warmed her up then took her back out you may have done more harm than good. Its very important to keep frostbitten parts protected from refreezing.

    that being said there's not much that can be done except wait and see. You can smear the feet with some antibiotic ointment and keep her calm. the toes will likely fall off on there own if they were that badly damaged. it could take a couple of weeks so keep aplying the ointment as needed.

    we have a banty we rescued last year with frostbite on her toes. she wound up loosing all her toes at the first joint. other than having a hard time perching she has recovered rather well.

    good luck
  9. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    i think the pepper could help if not it's worth a try i have heard of others giving it to chickens before i just never knew what it did. massageing her feet and soaking her feet i didn't think of since it's winter but since she will be in the house i'll be able to do that and she can stay warm after, she will be in here till spring then kept with only a few to keep her company in a seperated pen.

    i will see if i can get some pics of her tomarrow i have to find my cam. the frost burn is not on the outside it is in the pads of her feet and toes it's weird it's on the inside(internal damage) not outside like a roosters comb or waddles would look. i have brooder babies here now who she can buddy with they are 3-4mths old now so big enough to keep her company. for asprin i don't have that in my house cause i'm severly allergic to it but i do have ib profin and tylonal for kid's and adults would any of those work for her?

    yes i agree unfortunately at the time we never thought of that as we didn't know that could happen. had i known i'd of kept her in the house till spring it may have helped her.
  10. Itsme

    Itsme Songster

    Aug 5, 2007
    NW Wisconsin
    We had a rooster who lived for years with no toes..only stumps. He couldn't roost of course but was fine other than that.

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