i rescued a chicken....

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Auban, Dec 31, 2014.

  1. Auban

    Auban Out Of The Brooder

    15
    3
    24
    Dec 27, 2014
    and now im not sure what to do with it...


    ok, so two days before Christmas, on the 23rd(my wife's birth day, go figure) i walked out of my mother in laws house to find her dog chewing on a chicken. i thought the chicken was dead, but when i walked up to it, its eyes were still looking around randomly. that meant it still had brain function. so, i thought about putting it out of its misery with a blunt trauma to the head... but i figured i should inspect it first. and as it turned out, the chicken was not too badly damaged. just a lot of puncture wounds and a lot of missing feathers. it was pretty much unresponsive at that point... so much so that i had to prop its head up so that it could breath when i brought it inside. i put it in a cardboard box with some towels to prop its head up(it couldnt hold its own head up at that time) and left it the hell alone. my experience with wildlife rehabilitation tells me to leave a stressed bird be... if they are going to live, its going to be on their own terms(i have done several successful surgeries on birds, but a stressed bird always seems to turn into a dead bird).


    anyway, the bird seemed pretty well well the next day, very talkative, even willing to eat a little. so, i figured it would be a good time to examine it to get a better idea of what i was looking at. it had a very bad limp and was very wobbly on its feet, but it was able move its feet through all of their natural ranges. i held the chicken up and "walked" it along the ground to make sure that it WAS capable of walking. anyway, i figured that this would be a good time to snap some photos of the chicken. she(i say she because i am guessing. i really dont know any better, never kept chickens) seemed quite well, and responded well to me. talked to me quite a bit and didn't freak out a bit.

    here are some picks:

    it said something to me, but i didnt catch it. i speak several languages, but i never did learn chicken.
    [​IMG]


    this is a pic of the chickens back. besides the puncture wounds i know about, it doesnt seem too bad.
    [​IMG]


    it lost a lot of feathers. there are a LOT of feathers in the yard in the area i found her. (i think its a "her" at least)
    she doesnt have much of a tail left...
    [​IMG]



    anyway, by a strange coincidence, i just closed on a property (on the 23rd, my wifes birthday) that happens to have two barns, a storage shed, and a chicken coop on it. so, i put the chicken in the most logical place... the chicken coop.

    i went ahead and bought some normal poultry feed, a chicken feeder, and a chicken waterer. (or whatever you call the bottle and dish that chickens drink from) in the coop with it.

    its protected from predators and has its own box, full of and surrounded by lots of hay. she seems to like it, as she spends most of her time there.



    she is a friendly little bird, every time i check on her, she runs to my legs and "cuddles" for lack of better word. if it werent for the fact that my job takes my out of the country for about six months out of the year, i would probably keep her as a pet.

    but, such is life for those in my career field. we are only here for half the year...

    anyway, what would your suggest? my wifes grandparents have chickens, and they could certainly handle another, but im leery of giving them this one until i know its not going to get sick. and im coming up on my six months of "go time", so i need to make a decision on her in the next few weeks.

    im ok with my wife taking care of her if it can be a weekly thing. she has her own business and asking her to check up on the chicken more than once a week would actually be difficult in our situation...

    the chicken is doing great by the way. she is quite active and eating a lot. very talkative. she is funny in that she will run to my leg and then start up a low "bawking". cute if you ask me...




    so, here is my question... can this chicken be taken care of properly by once a week check ups while kept alone in a secured coop once a week? i check on it every day, but my wife will not be able to. and neither will i when im shipped off to another country again...

    im assuming my answer is going to be get rid of her. by the way, i know who her owner is. her owner will not secure her chickens in any way. i have already spoken to her about that and she doesn't seem to care, "chicks are cheap!"... so, when i found this "dead" chicken this time, i decided not to bring it back to her. she does not have anything set up to protect her chickens at all...
    if she sets something up to protect them, i would be happy to bring her back to her, but im afraid it would just fall prey to the dog again, or some other predator...

    so what would you all suggest, knowing that we could only realistically check on the chicken once a week after a little while from now... before that, ill be checking on her daily(for about month at least...)
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  2. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    30,648
    15,253
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    Glad you rescued her! Looks like a hen, yes. No, checking on her only once a week would not be enough for her, besides being alone as well. Chickens need company, they are flock animals and need to have more than one. If you will be there for at least a month then that should be enough time to have her quarantined alone to make sure she doesn't have any illnesses or disease. If I were you I'd check with your grandparents to see if they could take her, if she passes quarantine. Otherwise I'd post on your local Craigslist or paper to rehome her with another flock. Hope she pulls through and good luck! Hope that helps, is just my opinion tho. :D
     
  3. CrazyChookz

    CrazyChookz Chillin' With My Peeps

    896
    21
    111
    Jun 15, 2012
    Chasing Chooks
    Welcome to BYC! [​IMG] You seem like a very nice person, and I believe you have a very sweet buff orpington there, from the pictures. You should consider taking her to a vet to get looked at, and my advice is that it would be better if you were there to look after her everyday. Sometimes accidents can happen quickly and she could easily get hurt or even die if left alone for a week. There's also the social side, she will likely get lonely unless there are other chickens or a human friend. You should report that owner, that doesn't seem like humane treatment of chickens at all! I wish you luck and a happy new year! If your situation changes I hope you take up chicken keeping, it is wonderful and very enjoyable. [​IMG]
     
  4. Auban

    Auban Out Of The Brooder

    15
    3
    24
    Dec 27, 2014

    thank you for your reply.

    your pretty much saying what i have been thinking about... i would love to keep her, but i cant at the time. since my wife will not be home while i am gone, ill probably just give her to my wifes grand parents.


    i cant wait to keep chickens of my own... she is such funny little girl...
    anyway, ill keep her for a few more weeks and introduce her to my wife's grandparents flock, given that there aren't any issues with her. never kept chickens before. i have rehabilitated a lot of native birds(birds of prey are a pain in the ***, btw) but never chickens. she seems to be doing well... hopefully, she can do well for another few weeks.
    im quite sure she will will do fine at this point. i have seen too many birds recover (and die) to think this one is going to die. she doesn't even look the least bit sick by this point.
    again, thank you for your input.
     
  5. Auban

    Auban Out Of The Brooder

    15
    3
    24
    Dec 27, 2014
    buff orpington? ill have to look that up..

    anyway, ill be able to check on her every day for at least the next few weeks. after that, if she still seems healthy, i plan to send her to my wifes grandparents flock. lots of chickens there.

    she would already have been there if it werent for the issue of disease... i would feel terrible if i introduced something to their flock. i fully understand the issue of communicable diseases.


    as for a vet, i could. i really could. but, at this point i dont think she needs one. maybe i posted in the wrong place? i guess its not much of an emergency now that she is eating, talking, and drinking regularly.

    but, she was a surprise, and we have not the money for her vet bill. that, and i may be a bit pompous here, but i have studied under a few vets, and i know what to look for... if that makes any sense. the bird seems ok now.


    now its just an issue of what to do with her? i have have a brand new house, with barns and an chicken coop... but no way to really care for her after a few weeks.
    she needs a new home...
     
  6. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    30,648
    15,253
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    You are very welcome! Sometimes all we need is that second voice repeating what we are trying not to hear from ourselves, lol. Birds of prey are a bit different, but chickens will hide illnesses, etc just as much as a bird of prey, if not more. Looks like you have a good background for helping her, and from what I can see she is mostly just missing a lot of feathers, rather than major injuries? Just make sure she can keep warm since those were her insulation.
    I agree with CrazyChookz that she looks like a sweet Buff Orp.
    BYC is the best place for any questions you might have while you are taking care of her so just ask when you need to! Everyone here is great and they've helped me a lot through the last year. Good luck and hope all works out well! :)
     
  7. Auban

    Auban Out Of The Brooder

    15
    3
    24
    Dec 27, 2014
    major injuries was one of the things i looked for. she was favoring one foot the day after i found her, bur she could walk, albeit a bit wobbly. the day after, she had no problem walking. a really tough little bird if you ask me...

    i have seen men who went through less who did not survive... she is a survivor. i wish i could keep her.


    maybe when i stop doing what i do... until then,

    thank you for your input.
     
  8. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    30,648
    15,253
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    You're very welcome, Auban, am glad to help.
     
  9. Auban

    Auban Out Of The Brooder

    15
    3
    24
    Dec 27, 2014
    just to give you guys an update, the chicken is doing fine.

    my wifes grandparents already said that they would love to take her, though i insisted on keeping her for at least a month to quarantine her. im out of state on business right now, but my wife is taking her over to her grandparents tomorrow. they cant get over how tame she is. she will walk right up to anyone and let them pick her up.

    well, she will now. at first, she wouldnt, but whenever i had her out, i would physically block her view of our cats, and would shoo the cats away if they came close. i guess she associates people with safety now.

    my wife informed me that she has laid four eggs since i left for business.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2015
  10. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    30,648
    15,253
    676
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee

    That is awesome, Auban!!! Great work rehabbing her! She is very lucky you found her... :D
    Very glad your grandparents are happy about taking her in and that she is laying now! :)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by