I need to lance/drain an absessed hock, any advice?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Sunny Side Up, Oct 24, 2009.

  1. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
    128
    281
    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I have a dear 6-month-old BO pullet who somehow injured her leg & has had a swollen hock joint for about a month. She can barely put any weight on it, and just hops around on one foot. The boys have named her "Skipper".

    I spoke with a vet who came to judge our poultry club's show last night, and brought Skipper for him to see. He said I should cut & drain the infection out, squirt Neosporin in it, and it should get better.

    He did show me the place where there seemed to be the most swelling, told me where to cut. But you know how it goes, you always think up more questions after the doctor leaves. I'd like to tend to Skipper's injury asap, but can't contact the vet over the weekend.

    So please, if you have any experience or advice, please share your wisdom! This is what I planned:

    To cover an outdoor table with a plastic bag, wrap Skipper in a towel so she won't move around, leave her injured leg exposed. Have someone hold & try to soothe her while I'm working. Wash her injured leg before cutting (with what?). Wear plastic gloves, use a large-bore hypodermic needle to pierce & drain the abscess (think that's the best tool to use?). Schmear lots of antibiotic ointment in & around the joint, keep her in the hospital cage while she recovers.

    The vet said not to wrap the leg after cutting & draining, but to leave it open to air. He also didn't recommend oral antibiotics. Anyone know of good foods to give to promote healing?

    Skipper & I thank you!
     
  2. MistyValley

    MistyValley Chillin' With My Peeps

    161
    0
    99
    Sep 4, 2009
    Patterson MO
    Sound like you have it well in hand. I know that on a human they use betadine before surgery. Do you have any of that? Best of luck hope your bird heals quickly.
     
  3. willheveland

    willheveland Chillin' With My Peeps

    946
    12
    161
    Jan 29, 2008
    southern tier,NY
    For "good foods to give" I'd pm Glenda Heywood. She could help you with that. She's pretty helpful with cures and remedies. Will
     
  4. Dandy Acres

    Dandy Acres Out Of The Brooder

    93
    0
    39
    Apr 14, 2009
    Don't forget to plug your nose! The large needle has worked well for me.
     
  5. painted bliss100

    painted bliss100 New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Oct 24, 2009
    Opening the abcess is good but it needs drained. The best way to do this is get a poultrice which they sell at tractor and supply, look in the horse section. The easy way also and cheaper is to soak in epsom salt solution which you can get at walmart or a drugstore for less than 5 dollars, then go ahead and wrap after applying a antiseptic. The problem with draining the way prescribed especially after a month it will be so far up the leg and will take time to drain. The poultrice basically sucks the infection out much quicker.
     
  6. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
    128
    281
    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Are you saying that the poultrice will draw out the infection? Would that be instead of lancing/cutting through the skin? Or do you apply the poultrice, let it cause the infected material to come to a head, and then lance it? And will a soak in an epsom salt solution have the same effect as a poultrice?
     
  7. painted bliss100

    painted bliss100 New Egg

    7
    0
    7
    Oct 24, 2009
    I would lance it, has to be lanced. Make a poultrice or soak in epsom solution for about 15 minutes than apply a gauze bandage to help drain with neosporin on it. You probally could make a poultrice of your own with the epsom solution by soaking it in gauze and holding the chicken while it's wrapped around the hock. You can also apply scarlet oil instead of neosporin, comes in a spray can and I've used it on injured chickens in the past. That is amazing stuff, antiseptic, antibiotic, antifungal ect. That's in the equine area of the tsc store.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2009
  8. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
    128
    281
    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I'm sorry, I'm still not understanding. When should I cut into the skin to drain out the infected matter? Before or after applying the poultice? Or should I do both? Apply the poultice to bring the matter to a head, cut & drain, and apply more afterwards to help bring the rest of the matter out? And then apply antiseptic, right?

    I am going out to the feed & supply store now, will look at the available poultice & antiseptic while I'm there. I'll tend to Skipper when I get back. But I'll check back online before I do, thank you all for adding any more helpful information!
     
  9. Sandi630

    Sandi630 Out Of The Brooder

    14
    0
    22
    Oct 21, 2009
    Hey!
    I'm a new chicken owner BUT a seasoned horse owner with my fair share of abcess experience. My suggestion would be the following:

    If possible soak in a warm epsom salt solution;
    Apply a poultice for about 12-24 hours. Animalintex pads work GREAT, ichthamol is another good one. the animalintex pads are actually a pad that you can cut to fit, wet and apply. Pick up some vet wrap as well to wrap it up. Vet wrap is a self-adhesive wrap that works great.

    Ok - so soak, poultice, tomorrow see what it looks like, and if it looks ready to "go" wash the area with a betadine scrub (TSC will have that too), and lance......drain, reapply poultice.

    Good luck!!
    And really plug up your nose....it will be GROSS!

    -Sandi
     
  10. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I can't type much today, but if you look up some very old threads by me on Zane, we fought a hock infection for months with him. Finally, a very strong antibiotic sent to me by someone who cared, did the trick. We drained, pulled out stuff, stitched him up or sometimes just wrapped it, gave him antibiotics, etc, etc. He almost died before we got a strong enough antibiotic in him. He's still with me after a year and a half, but he'll never walk again, sadly.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by