Is it 'cruel' to keep this hen alive?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by newTexan2chickens, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. newTexan2chickens

    newTexan2chickens Chirping

    Jun 15, 2010
    I bought a pullet when she was 5 wks or so from a backyard breeder. She was kept with a zillion other chicks in a rabbit hutch. Once I got her home I realized one foot completely turned out and she limped on it (like a 45 degree angle). As she has gotten older she is barely able to use the leg.... or actually not at all. When she free ranges with the rest of the flock she tends to go a bit and then just sit. She is a healthy weight and looks good- so far the other chickens don't pick on her or exclude her. I don't really worry about her with predators because they only free range when I am there- the rest of the time they are in a secure run. DH and I have been watching her and she seems ok, but don't want to keep a chicken around if it is cruel for them. Thanks.
  2. CoopCrazy

    CoopCrazy Brooder Boss

    Mar 3, 2009
    I say if she is able to get around on her own and is eating , drinking ,thriving, then i wouldnt put her down ... If she starts showing pain or losing weight then it may be time to let her go ... Otherwise enjouy your "special needs " chicken...
  3. happyhensny

    happyhensny Brown Barns Farm

    I have a now 4 yr old hen, Wounded Wanda, that was "born" with a leg just like that. She is fine, has survived our very cold winters and 100* summers. Ornery old biddy will go after anyone that messes with her. If your pullet is functioning then I wouldn't worry.
  4. chickensioux

    chickensioux Songster

    Feb 12, 2009
    Western North Carolina
    I agree with the others. She's just special.
  5. Candiss

    Candiss Burdette Bantams

    Jun 30, 2010
    I agree, as long as quality of life it there, let her do her chicken thang [​IMG]

  6. newTexan2chickens

    newTexan2chickens Chirping

    Jun 15, 2010
    Thanks guys... we will. We call her Festus... not really a girlie name but oh well.[​IMG]

    I think I am just projecting my feelings.... I feel sorry for her because she can't keep up with the other chickens... doesn't really seem to bother her tho.
  7. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member 9 Years

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    As long as she continues to enjoy life let her live. If and when the quality of life deteriorates, do what you must.
  8. Bill D

    Bill D In the Brooder

    Apr 22, 2010
    Fayetteville NC
    Why not make her a prosthetic leg?! Maybe it will help![​IMG]
  9. Rohnasmom

    Rohnasmom In the Brooder

    Jan 4, 2010
    Bradford County .Pa.
    I have one we call stuppy, actually stumpy....she came to me with no toes on:D one foot..she beats feet with the others although a bit slower. Loves life. She will let you know when its time to let her go..
  10. We have a hen named Igor. She has a neck shaped like an S. Just happened one day when she was about 6 weeks old. (Found out it was probably from immunization done at the hatchery.) We debated long and hard about whether we should put her down. But, she holds her own with the other chickens, eats, drinks, maintains her weight, is meticulous about her feathers, and lays an egg every day. Oddly enough, she is obsessed with having clean feet and legs. I mean spotless when the other chickens look like they have poop stockings on. She walks sideways and can't stretch out like the other chickens do when they spot something. We decided to let her live and if it ever became an issue we would take care of it, but it never has been and she is 18 months old.

    Good luck with your special chicken!
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2010

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