Oh no...frost bitten comb! Please help!

dashman1319

Chirping
Jul 31, 2018
30
102
89
Chapel Hill, NC
Hi all,

I just walked out to check on my chickens in their snowed in coop and was surprised and upset to find that one appears to have pretty advanced frostbite on her comb. We've had a lot of sudden snow and though I thought their coop was free of drafts I may have been wrong. It's also been very difficult to keep everything as dry as I would like as the snow melts off. None of the other four birds appear to be affected at all. I have been checking them daily, and maybe I missed some scaling that should have indicated frostbite, since part of the comb has turned black and a bit appears missing...possibly pecked off by another bird.

Pictures are below. I've isolated her as well as I can for now. Most of the articles I've found about frostbite are how to avoid it in the first place...what are the best steps now that it's happened? Thanks for your help...we're all freaking out!
 

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LindaMarieLaur

Chirping
Feb 26, 2018
83
46
83
New York State.
Petroleum jelly. I applied it a few times during the winter last year to a rooster whose comb and wattles were getting frost bit. Don't smear it, but a thin coat like you'd put on your lips. He made it through fine and so did his comb and wattles. I know I'll be repeating this year and probably with more than that roo since I have quite a few more chickens this year.
 

Eggcessive

Addict
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 3, 2011
59,289
50,911
1,302
southern Ohio
In the second picture we can just see the tip of the comb and a missing area, and that may well have been frostbitten. In the first picture, it is hard to tell much exceopt that the left side of her comb looks pecked with dry black blood. I would not do much to her comb unless you want to apply some plain Neosporin ointment or Vetericyn wound spray. Just do not massage her comb since it is sore. I usually do nothing, and the black parts will fall off making the comb more rounded.

How big is your coop? Very small coops can be humid inside, and some birds can even get frostbite if their combs touch a metal roof inside. Basically, frostbite occurs when then is too much moisture during below freezing weather.
 

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