I have a hen with hawk attack wounds and need some advise, PLEASE read

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by shannara200, Jan 6, 2017.

  1. shannara200

    shannara200 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 16, 2012
    Hello, Yesterday one of my hens was attacked by a hawk but was saved before the hawk could give a death blow. Below is a picture of the wound she has on the neck and I wanted to find out if anyone can help with treatment.

    So far she is doing ok, alert and able to move her head around, the area where she was attacked lost all the skin and feathers exposing the underneath.

    She may be blind but not sure, one eye is staying closed and the other one just shows a solid black, I am sure in time I will know for sure.

    After the attack I cleaned the wound with Hydrogen peroxide and it seem to help with taking out dirt and excess blood, she was in shock and just stayed in one position breathing heavily, after some time she calmed down let us clean her the best we could after which she settled in the basket we had and after a few hours and seeing she was going to not die I lathered some Neosporin over the open wound and put her in a dark room for the night.

    the next morning I found her sitting up and sensing my presents, we then cleaned both eye areas and was able to open both of them but she only keeps one eye open and I said before I am not sure she can see through it yet, time will tell me that.

    What I need some advise on is the area where the attack happen has no skin I am not sure if I should put a gauze over it or leave it open so it can heal naturally.

    I am keeping her in the house with a clean environment with clean towels for her to sit on. I have kept the Neosporin on the wound in hopes that will keep it germ free, but its not covered.

    should I cover it? and if so with what?? I am not sure if she will take it off if I do.

    Any advise will be helpful.

    Thank you

  2. lisameow

    lisameow Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 18, 2016
    Australia, QLD
    This is what I think. It will heal but it probably won't be very pretty. Wrap with a non stick bandage. Just to make sure nothing gets into the wound and to give a barrier against air borne germs. They have a very thin film over them so they won't stick to the feathers or wound and you could probably find them at the chemist if you don't have them. I'd change it every day and when it starts healing more you can lessen the days you replace the bandages. In between changes flush it with warm saline water. I think you can buy it or you can make your own. Just dissolve some sea salt in warm water and use a syringe to flush the wound out. Afterwards, gently pat up the extra water with a clean towel or paper towel before putting the bandage on. This won't hurt at all but make sure you use sea salt or pink Himalayan salt. Never use table salt or it will sting.
  3. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    It takes time, but such wounds generally heal quite well. Continue with the antibiotic ointment, but no more Hydrogen Peroxide. Gently clean her eyes and apply eye drops if necessary. Such wounds heal from the outside inwards so you are in for a long haul with her.
  4. azygous

    azygous Flock Master

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Your hen was miraculously spared! Usually hawks aim for the back of the neck and break it on the first swipe. This wound has an excellent chance of completely healing. But you have to do your part so infection doesn't set in. Chickens live in a dirty environment so cleaning the wound twice a day is very important.

    Use warm water and mild soap. It is the best thing available to clean bacteria out of a wound. Do this every morning and every evening just before she goes to sleep.

    The second most important thing for healing is to keep the wound moist. This is important so infection doesn't set in and it encourages tissue growth. After you clean and dry the wound, spray it with Vetericyn, let dry. If you want to leave her with the flock, step two should be painting Blu-kote on the wound. You can skip this step if you have her segregated. The final step is to smooth on some triple antibiotic ointment.

    The wound will grow new tissue from the outward edges toward the center. In a month you may see just the smallest pinhole in the center and volcanic-like edges. This will smooth out over time. But don't be tempted to quit the wound care. Keep it up until the wound completely closes, keeping it moist and clean until it does.
  5. Allisha

    Allisha Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 2, 2013
    Our dog got one of our favorite chickens several months ago. He put quite a few puncture wounds three inches or so deep along her sides and her back. If a chicken looks like it is in severe shock, I wouldn't even clean out the wounds for a good few hours at least.

    Our hen looked horrible, and we were sure she wasn't going to make it. We were also concerned because puncture wounds, are, supposedly, VERY hard to keep clean. The first day past the attack, we tried cleaning the wounds with hydrogen peroxide. The next day, Veterycin. But because they were puncture wounds, they were not flushed properly and developed puss the next day. So we bought one of those syringes, Q-tips, Blu-kote and Veterycin. We cleaned out the puss with hydrogen peroxide, using the syringe to squirt it into the wounds. The next following days, we used Veterycin, and then finally we would Blu-kote the wound every other day or so. Every sanitization we used Triple Antibiotic with NO painkiller. It took a good month of us cleaning the wounds out at least twice a day, but she survived. However, it was so painful, she attacked herself one day and ripped ALL of the epidermis right off of all of her back. and it looked much like your chicken's wound. We treated that the same way.

    azygous already posted all of this advice, but I just wanted to add that I used the steps that azygous described, and she is still alive to this day! Coating the wound with Triple Antibiotic may help as well. And as mentioned already, keep cleaning the wound until everything is healed! It takes time, but eventually it WILL heal.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2017
  6. Talithahorse

    Talithahorse Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 5, 2012
    Hartselle, Al
    After the initial cleaning, I just spray vetricyn (There is even a type you can use in the eyes) and give them time to heal. If it is summer I will sometimes use SWAT which keeps the flies out. Also when the swelling goes down she may regain some vision. I had one that I swore lost her eye but 4 days later she opened it up and now sees fine. (I also have a blind chicken who does well despite his total blindness). Good luck and let us know how she does.
  7. Dekthai818

    Dekthai818 Just Hatched

    Nov 14, 2016
    keep us updated
  8. shannara200

    shannara200 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 16, 2012
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Hello Everyone, its been 10 days since the attack and she is still alive and doing very well...I think [​IMG] I have been keeping the wound area covered with Anti biotic cream and cleaning any dried blood that has been left after the attack, I was also feeding her baby food with a syringe since one of her eyes was closed and she had no ability to eat since her depth perception was gone. today her both her eyes are open and look healthy, I used anti biotic eye drops on her and it seem to work and since both eyes are open she can now eat on her own. The wounds seem to be healing very well, after the attack part of her jaw bone was exposed for a while but now has new skin over it and is not exposed anymore, she did have two holes one in her head and one on the neck that I kept filled with cream but now has filled in with scar skin.

    She is acting more like herself now and likes to walk around and perch on the garage sink at night to sleep. I am keeping her away from the flock for now since she still has dry blood on her neck at the attack point and I don't want her to be pecked at by the other chickens, I figure in about a week I should be able to let her rejoin the flock but we will see. pictures of the wound healing it seems she will recover but we will see parts of the wound still needs skin to grow.

    Thanks everyone for your help [​IMG]
  9. Talithahorse

    Talithahorse Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 5, 2012
    Hartselle, Al
    Thanks for the update. Glad to know she is doing well.

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