My Speckeled Sussex hen has grown another toe! Huh?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by dumb_cluck, Aug 6, 2013.

  1. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 3 SS hens, and a couple weeks ago I noticed one of them hobbling around. (They are two years old).

    Today I noticed why...she has a fourth toe that has grown out. Any explanations? Anybody else have this happen?
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  2. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    What do you mean by a fourth toe growing out? Most breeds of chickens have four toes, so I don't know why this is unusual. Do you mean that the toenail has gotten extremely long? A photo might help, too.
     
  3. krackowpolish

    krackowpolish Chillin' With My Peeps

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    where is the extra toe?
     
  4. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The extra toe is on each foot at the rear, but is VERY long like the front toes. The other two hens just have a little nub.

    It is almost "twisted" and causes her to walk funny. She eats and scratches fine. Ideas?
     
  5. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here's a pix. Look at the rear of the foot.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    That appears to be a spur, not a toe. Some hens, as they get older, will grow spurs just like roosters. I've never seen one as long as your hen's spur, though! If you want to help her walk better, trim off about 1/3 of the spur. At least for now, don't trim off any more than that. If it bleeds, use cornstarch, styptic powder, or flour to stop the bleeding.
     
  7. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm afraid to cut it. I don't want to cause her any other problems like infection or bleeding to death.

    At least I know it's a spur. Never knew hens would grow them and especially that big! It must poke her in the butt when she walks, which is why she walks weird.
     
  8. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    Spurs are just like fingernails or chicken toenails. As long as you don't go down too far, and cut into the quick (blood vessel that runs through part of each nail/spur), it doesn't bleed. Cutting it away, unless you hit the quick, causes no infection, either. And even if you were to cut into the quick, the bleeding is usually easy to stop. Chickens can lose a lot of blood without dying due to the loss of blood. Still, I understand why you don't want to try cutting it. I wouldn't want to accidentally go to far and hurt her if I were in your place. But I would still suggest at least trimming off the very tip so that it isn't as sharp when it digs into her.

    And yeah, I had no idea that hens could grow such large spurs either! Especially only a 2 year old hen!
     
  9. Beetlegreen

    Beetlegreen Out Of The Brooder

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    Sometimes hens grow spurs I've had hens with spurs before.[​IMG]
     
  10. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    I know, so have I. But I've never seen them grow so big!
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013

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