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I think I may need to cull one of my girls.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by jeremy, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. jeremy

    jeremy CA Royal Blues

    Mar 23, 2008
    Oakland, CA
    Last week two dogs got into our backyard and made their way into the chicken run. We lost 3 hens before we even got outside. 2 Delawares and 1 Silver Laced Wyandotte. 3 more of the girls had what looked like mild injuries. We consulted a vet, cleaned their wounds and decided to let nature take it's course. Over the weekend we lost another Wyandotte. With a total of 4 girls gone.

    It's been pretty chilly the past few weeks so we brought the remaining two hurt chickens inside into a makeshift brooder. 1 Delaware and 1 Silver Laced. The Silver Laced hen seems to have recovered alright. The last time we took them back outside with the others she was running around and sparring with the rest of the flock like normal.

    However, the poor Delaware hen doesn't seem to be getting much better. She's hardly active and isn't acting like her normal chicken self. The dogs got her pretty bad it seems, all of her tail feathers are gone, and there's about and inch deep gash where she was bit on her rump. The veternarian said to make sure infection didn't set in by using peroxide and neosporin. We have been and it started to look a little better, the wound seemed to have closed up and was looking alright. But the past few days she only has been looking worse. She hardly walks at all now, she mostly lays down in the brooder, only standing to drink and eat every once in awhile. We actually had to seperate the two hens because the Wyandotte started picking at her wounds.

    My quesiton is if anyone else has had an experience like this? What should I do? Did your hens get better? Should I consider culling the poor thing so she doens't suffer? I'm so upset. We raised all 16 of our chickens from day olds. (8 Delaware/8 Silver Laced Wyandotte) Now that we're down to 12 I wouldn't want to lose anymore. [​IMG]

    Thanks for anyone's words of help.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 9, 2008

  2. kryptoniteqhs

    kryptoniteqhs Rosecomb Rich

    Nov 14, 2008
    Perris, CA
    my thought is that a 1 inch deep gash is pretty deep for a chicken....maybe hit some internal organs....i would still give it some time...many things get worse before getting better...it seems as tho its the ones who seem fine are the ones to worry about
  3. Fudgie

    Fudgie Hatching Queen - Got Fudge?

    I would give her some protein. like a scrambled egg and some polyvisol without iron.. She is prolly in shock and still healing. Don't cull her just yet...Give her a break. Do you have heat on her. she might need a little edge to help her out. you can put like a 40 watt bulb in a heatlamp base to give her light and some heat.
  4. jeremy

    jeremy CA Royal Blues

    Mar 23, 2008
    Oakland, CA
    She's been under a heat lamp for for 3 days now. And coincidentally enough we just tried feeding her some crumbled boiled egg. She wouldn't even peck at it. : |

    I'm worried about her. I hope it is just shock and with time it'll wear off.
  5. Quote:Agreed here. polyvisol (w/o iron, important), some yogurt and scrambled eggs and a nice heat source will do more good than anyhting except time. If she is eating, drinking, sleeping and pooping that is about as good as it gets. You can also use some electrolytes and minerals, but I would wait a few days for this.

    Be sure she is not running a fever, you can feel her beak and under her wings were there are few feathers.

    Also, a kind word and a little attention go a long way.

    One more thing. Never use a product that has benzocain in it, it is toxic to a chicken.
  6. chick4chicks

    chick4chicks Songster

    Apr 6, 2008
    N.E. Pa.
    [​IMG] I am so sorry this happened to your girls. Sending get well quick wishes to the poor girl.
  7. jjthink

    jjthink Crowing

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    It sounds like the infection may be more than surficial and that she may need oral or injectible antibiotics, and fast.
    She may have also sustained internal injuries - does her poop look normal?
    Polyvisol 3 drops daily for a week is what is usually recommended in BYC posts.
    Warm, dry, comfortable, stress free place to rest. Lots of TLC. A drop of Rescue Remedy in her water bowl.
    And anything immensely enticing for her to eat - it may take time for her appetite to retunr but make sure she stays hydrated - much more crucial.
    Blasted dog incidences - they never seem to end.
    I hope fervently that she gets well.

  8. birdlover

    birdlover Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    So sorry about your girl. I agree with jjthink...it sounds like her wound has gotten infected and gone systemic. In that case, she would need oral antibiotics. I'm also surprised the vet said to use peroxide as it is my understanding that peroxide should NOT be used on open injuries...something about destroying the tissue? Can't remember the details of what I read but I remember being surprised because one would think peroxide would be a good thing. See if your vet will give you a good antibiotic for her. Baytril comes to mind but there are others. Good luck to your sweet hen.
  9. jeremy

    jeremy CA Royal Blues

    Mar 23, 2008
    Oakland, CA
    Sadly we woke up this morning to find our little Dellie girl not with us anymore.

    She was still and her eyes were closed, in the same place that we watched her go to sleep in last night. [​IMG] Hopefully at least she went without too much pain that way.

    I didn't realize how hard it would be to lose her, all day I was down. I think it was more difficult with her because we had done everything conceivable to try and nurse her back to good health.

    Now I feel like a bad chicken daddy.[​IMG]

    Thanks to everyone who replied along the way.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 10, 2008
  10. needmorechickens!

    needmorechickens! Songster

    Jul 2, 2008
    West TN
    [​IMG] I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your chickens. You did your best for them, so know that and remember them as they were when well.

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