Hen with severe infection in her leg need help.


Jul 14, 2018
IMG_20201113_170624450.jpg I noticed about 3 months ago that my silkie mix hen started hopping on one foot. I looked at her foot then and did not see any scabs or injuries, so I suspected that she must have sprained it somehow. She continues to roost with the other birds and hops around the yard not putting any weight on the right leg. She still has grip in her injured foot and the joints move without problem when I move them. I do not see any problems with the visible leg.
Fast forward to about 6 weeks ago, I noticed yesterday that the upper leg thigh area is swollen and warm to touch. I can not find any puncture areas or wounds. When I part the feathers, I noticed that some of her skin is a different color. Sort of a yellow splotchy color and the rest is a dark color.
About a month ago, the leg started weeping yellow fluid and it extremely swollen. She is not using the leg at all and is sitting tilted toward the side with the injured leg sticking out. I gave her 2cc penicillin injection for 7 days and soaked her leg in warm water. No improvement noted.
Last Friday I took her to the vet. She is sitting around with her leg stretched out. It is coated in yellow in areas and raw under the yellow. The vet does not have much experience with chickens, but said she would try. They x-rayed her leg and did not see any structural damage and diagnosed it as cellulitis. They prescribed Baytril 0.1 mg injection x 1 and then 0.1 mg orally for 6 days. Today is day 6 and I do not see any improvement.
What should my next step be? Ask for more baytril? Try LA 200?
I have attached some pictures of her leg taken around the time she was given penicillin. She continues to have a good appetite.

Around the time that I noticed her limping, I had a bull snake in my coop. It is probably a coincidence.

I would appreciate any help. Thank you. Karen is her name and she is very special to me.

IMG_20201106_181242426.jpg IMG_20201027_172347334.jpg


Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Apr 3, 2011
southern Ohio
Do you know if she was vaccinated for Mareks disease? I don’t know if the limp could have been a symptom of Mareks and she has developed a tumor, which are common with Mareks. Cellulitis can develop with a bacterial infection or even a sting or bite. Baytril is about the best antibiotic for most infections, much better than LA200. You could call the vet’s office and tell them that there has been no improvement. They might prescribe something else, but I don’t know what else you could try. I hope that you can start to see some improvement soon.


Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Dec 11, 2009
Colorado Rockies
The bull snake could have bitten her. Non-poisonous snakes will bite if they feel cornered. The bite certainly could have become infected as any bite would.

It's not a good sign that the infection has not responded to the antibiotic, and Baytril is about as powerful as they come. There may be something else going on that is preventing the infection from healing.

This happened a year ago with a hen of mine. By the time I discovered an infection on her tail "nub", it was very ugly. I debrided it, soaked her, dressed it, and put her on an antibiotic. A month later, there was no change, and she seemed to be feeling much worse. I have an avian virus in my flock, and I think it was affecting her immune system, preventing healing. I euthanized her.

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