Injured chicken has green foot, what should I do?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by RainbowState, Dec 21, 2010.

  1. RainbowState

    RainbowState New Egg

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    Dec 21, 2010
    Hi,

    I am new to this forum, I just joined today. I have been keeping chickens in Honolulu for about 4 years now and I have grown very fond of my hens. I have 14 Rhode Island Red/Leghorn crosses that are just beginning to lay. I noticed one a couple of days ago lying in a funny position so I picked her up to examine her. She has an injured foot which is swollen and quite warm. I have no idea how she hurt her foot but there is a good sized flesh wound on the foot as well as several smaller wounds all the way up her leg. She did not want to eat with the others and was favoring the injured foot and was low energy. I cleaned off the wound and put a topical antibiotic and cortisone cream on it. I also put her in a clean cage by herself up on the porch and she has been eating. Last night I went to check on her and put more topical antibiotic and cortisone. I noticed a greenish color has developed under the skin on her foot.

    Today I did the same treatment and she seems to be improving. She has a bit more energy than yesterday and has been using her injured foot more. But the green color under the skin has made a line up her leg. Could this be blood poisoning and if it is, what should I do? Does she need to be on an oral antibiotic? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. mypicklebird

    mypicklebird Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    Sonoma Co, CA
    green color is a normal chicken bruise. if the swelling & warmth is going down, and she is starting to use the foot again- this is an improvement, I would continue doing what you are doing (keep it clean, topical antibiotic, soaks ect). If she backslides- a systemic antibiotic may be useful. Topical cortisone is not indicated for a wound, and may depress the local immune system- I wouldn't put on more steroids.
     
  3. Lofty Dreams

    Lofty Dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 9, 2010
    Minnesota
    I aint heard of greeen unless of course its mold or iodine
     
  4. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Apr 15, 2009
    Green can be bruising or it can be the first sign of something more ominous. Take a good sniff of the wounds. Gangrene stinks like rotting meat pretty quickly. Bruises don't.

    I would stop using the cortisone cream, though. It won't help much and can make her more prone to infection. Cortisone is a mild steroid cream which is great for its anti-inflammatory properties, but the trade off is that it dampens immune response, which at this point is more important than the anti-inflammatory action.

    The warmth you are feeling is likely the first stage of wound healing which is called the inflammatory phase. The area heats up as the body pumps the wounded area full of white blood cells to eat damaged cells and clean up any invaders (germs). You should see a reduction in the heat and swelling within a couple days as the body starts to repair the damage. If the area continues to be swollen and hot for more than 5-7 days then I would consider using an antibiotic, but not until then. Antibiotic usage carries its own dangers. Best to let her try to heal on her own if you can.

    I'd add some protein rich foods to her diet during this time to aid in healing.

    Good luck with her.
     
  5. RainbowState

    RainbowState New Egg

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    Dec 21, 2010
    Thanks for all the advice. I will stop the cortisone treatment. Today she seems to be a little bit better with a little more of that chicken curiousness. The greenish color is receding and she is using the foot a little now. The wound is not smelly so I don't think it is gangrene. I bought some oral antibiotic at the feed store but I am not giving it to her since she seems to be on the mend. But I do feel better having it on hand in case she takes a turn for the worse but at this point I think she is going to recover fine. Thanks again!
     
  6. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Glad to hear she is on the mend. Give her some extra sunflower seeds to help her heal faster!

    Good luck.
     
  7. chkn

    chkn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 27, 2010
    Keep treating with topical and maybe give a little antibiotic. I had a hen with a green wing (and I mean bright green) and it worked out okay.
     

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