Hen with split skin wound under wing - what do I do?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by IndecisiveLizard, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. IndecisiveLizard

    IndecisiveLizard In the Brooder

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    Mar 11, 2018
    Hi All,

    I am looking for advice on what to do about a wounded hen. Last week, we had a hawk carry off two of our hens. Looked over the others and did not see any wounds at the time, but we just today noticed that one hen has a bad laceration below her right wing. It looks like it may have been a small wound missed, which was pulled open. She also has feather loss from a mean rooster and had been wearing a saddle for the past week or so. She is a concord black hen, approx. 7 months old, and she is eating, drinking, and otherwise behaving normally. For now I have isolated her so the other chickens don't exacerbate the problem.

    Does anyone know if this is treatable? What are my options here? Anything I can disinfect or treat it with? I have no experience to know if this is infected or needs stitches... If the conclusion is that she is not treatable and in pain I will euthanize if necessary, but she is a very sweet hen and I would hate to lose her, especially having just lost two others from my very small flock. blackie right wing.jpg
    I feel absolutely awful for not catching this sooner. We just had back-to-back nor'easters and it has been a rough time all round.

    Thanks.
     
  2. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    I would flush it out with either Betadine or Saline solution. You can spray some Vetericyn or triple antibiotic ointment on it. You could start her on some Penicillin if it gets red, hot, swollen or gets pus. But I think cleaning it and using the Vetericyn spray should be fine.
     
  3. IndecisiveLizard

    IndecisiveLizard In the Brooder

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    Mar 11, 2018
    Thank you so much for your fast response. My main concern is that it is gaped open and I can see the muscle underneath. With it flopping around like that, I was planning to flush with saline and was considering suturing it. Do you think suturing it is a bad idea? Should it be left open and continue flushing/penicillin?
     
  4. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    I cant really see the flap of skin in the photo.
     
  5. Riche Bronson

    Riche Bronson Songster

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    If the wound is over a week old it’s likely too late to stitch it. I’d just make sure to keep it clean so it didn’t get infected, until it heals by itself. Poor things! I’ve had an owl chasing mine around for the past few days/evenings- traumatizing them half to death! Luckily I’m always here and have been able to run outside and shoo it away before it caught/hurt one of them.. But honestly I’ve never seen my chickens run so fast- or hide so well! A couple of them it took me 45 minutes to find them!! Smart! Especially considering how spoiled they are- and for the fact that I’ve had them since they were a day old, and they have never experienced any need for protecting themselves- that instinct was pretty impressive!!
     
  6. IndecisiveLizard

    IndecisiveLizard In the Brooder

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    Mar 11, 2018
    The wound itself is about 2 inches long, and the skin on the right hand side of the photo is loose. The red/pink in the middle is exposed muscle that you can see as you look into the sagging would. Sorry for not taking a better photo, I was trying to keep her calm as I brought her in to the ICU (my office).
     
    Riche Bronson likes this.
  7. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    Chickens heal from some horrible wounds. As long as it doesn't get infected, I think she'll be fine with just keeping it clean. Its under the wing so they others wont see it and peck at it.
     
    Riche Bronson likes this.
  8. IndecisiveLizard

    IndecisiveLizard In the Brooder

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    Mar 11, 2018
    Thanks, I won't stitch it, I will just keep it as clean as possible. It was the loose skin that had concerned and thinking it needed stitching but I will hold off on that. I made some sterile saline solution so as soon as that cools I'll flush it out. I have penicillin which I'll inject in her thigh for a few days. I'll keep her inside and warm and see how it goes.
     
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  9. andreanar

    andreanar Crowing

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    Good Luck and post back on how she does!
     
    IndecisiveLizard likes this.
  10. IndecisiveLizard

    IndecisiveLizard In the Brooder

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    Mar 11, 2018
    Thank you, I will do that!
     
    andreanar likes this.

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