My first chicken injury

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by boxerchick, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. boxerchick

    boxerchick Hatching

    Oct 28, 2014
    Hi i'm new to the forum and am glad u all are here for advice. Dog got ahold of one of my hens. It's not too bad, mostly loss of feathers. There are a few punctures in her back and one place where the skin split and you can see quite a bit of muscle. I cleaned her up with warm water and put hydrogen peroxide over the wounds and then antibiotic ointment. I'm letting her rest and settle down in a dog crate at the moment. My question is, is it ok to put her back with the rest of the flock? Will the dust and dirt be a problem for her wounds? Is it possible that the other chickens will harass her? I'm also concerned that if I keep her away from the flock until she scabs up that she may not be accepted back in. I so appreciate any advice. thx
  2. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Crowing

    Jul 24, 2013
    First, I have to say that you treated the wound well.

    As for what to do next, I don't think it is a good idea to put the hen back with the flock. The dust/dirt is not a concern, but pecking by flockmates is. Chickens naturally are attracted to strange things, especially the color red, and often times will peck an injured bird to death. One way around this is covering the wound with a colored wound spray, like Blue-kote, since that disguises the color and helps deter other birds. The best option, though, is to keep the injured hen separate at least until the wound has scabbed over and healed a little.

    It is true that isolation for a long time can make re-introducing the hen difficult. It is especially hard to reintroduce a single bird. However, there are a few things you can do to minimize reintroduction problems. One thing to do is put another gentle flockmate or two in with the injured hen after a few days. They may fight a little, but at least the entire flock won't be attacking one bird. Then, you can try introducing the several isolated birds in with the entire flock. The attention won't all be directed at one bird, and the risk of injury will be lessened.

    Another thing to try is to put the injured hen in a dog crate or other wire enclosure where the flock can see her (and she can see them), but they can't touch each other. Let the flock live within sight of the hen for a few days, and then try introducing her. Hopefully, the exposure to the hen before introduction will prevent a lot of fighting.

    Well, I hope that helps. Good luck with your hen!
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2014
  3. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Crossing the Road

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Welcome to BYC. BantamLover 21 has given you good advice. Peroxide can be used initially to cleanse a wound, but shouldn't be used after that. Reapply the plain Neosporin 1-2 times a day. Betadine or Hibiclens plus water are good products to keep around for first aid and injuries. If your coop is large enough, place her in a dog crate for 2-3 days inside the coop with her friends. If unable to do that, you could bring her out with the gang for supervised play sessions an hour or two before dusk, and she can go into the coop with the others, making it easier for you to retrieve her off the roost. If that won't work either, then keep her out for 3 days, then put BluKote, a blue coloring antiseptic from the feed stores over her wounds, and try her back with them, but watch for any picking.
  4. boxerchick

    boxerchick Hatching

    Oct 28, 2014
    Thank u both for the advice. It never would've occurred to me to just put the dog crate in the coop and run to keep her as near as possible to them. And I know just the buddy to put in with her. actually there are a couple that I might rotate in with her. This is the first time I've had chickens and didn't know about the Blu-Kote so especially thanks for that. I'll keep ya posted. Thanks![​IMG]

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