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older chick with a broken leg?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by rpar003, May 12, 2011.

  1. rpar003

    rpar003 Out Of The Brooder

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    Devastatingly the neighbor's dog got into our yard yesterday. He ripped the side off our chick day house and killed three of them before we could get there. I managed to get one chick (Jane) off him. She's doing OK, but I think her leg is probably broken. Our chicks were 8 weeks old, and we hatched them from eggs.

    She doesn't seem to be in much pain. She's happy sitting down, pecks at food and has pooped since. When she walks she doesn't seem able to put much weight on her right side - she almost seems to be using her wing to assist her. Last night she couldn't stand on that side at all, but this morning she will take 2-3 steps without the kind of falling down motion.

    We took her down to our friend's house to be with their chickens. My friend & I hatched eggs from the same clutch, and in fact one of her chicks was ours until about 3 weeks ago (we each hatched more than we needed in an arrangement with the farm to return the "extras"). My friend says the chick that used to be ours seems to recognize Jane, and went right up and chatted to her this morning (the other two are mostly ignoring her).

    Is there anything I should do to help her heal? My friend's husband had chickens as a child, and says everyone had a "limpy" in their flock. He says just leave her be. I just hate the thought of her being in pain. We're beyond devastated about our sweet chicks. I can't stop crying, the kids can't stop crying - we're just a mess!

    Ironically my friend has her chickens in an open air area (fenced side garden). Our chicks were much safer (or so we thought) in a fully enclosed structure.
     
  2. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    Have you felt her leg to confirm its broken? If it is it will need to be set. I think you can search or check the FAQs. If its not broken, just keep her isolated and comfortable until she's feeling better. Good luck!
     
  3. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    If it's broken and the two bones move during the healing process, it will heal with the bone pieces not attached to each other. So then you need to splint it. It won't take much, probably a little vet wrap or tape, just to hold the bones still. She may not heal with a normal leg but she'll be better off if it heals so the broken place doesn't keep moving.

    If you splint, watch the feet and toes to be sure the circulation doesn't get cut off -- this can happen from swelling during the healing process.
     
  4. rpar003

    rpar003 Out Of The Brooder

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    As she's moving around more, it's looking like it might be her middle toe. Which I guess is much better than her leg! We'll look at taping or splinting it tonight - I looked up how to do it in my book. So glad it looks like she might pull through. Now we have to figure out the whole one-chicken problem.
     
  5. rpar003

    rpar003 Out Of The Brooder

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    So it's for sure her middle toe - but it doesn't seem to be distressing her at all. She's walking, scratching etc without problem. The area doesn't seem to be tender to the touch at all, so for now we've just decided to leave it. Her toe is on an angle though, it looks a bit off. (This was the advice from my friend's husband, who is def. more of a "leave it alone and let it be" type of person - so do let me know if you think we should do something for her).

    Unfortunately the other chicks are pecking her a bit - she's low on the ladder that's for sure. They have plenty of room so she can get away without problem, but it just hurts my heart a bit to see them being "mean" to her - she's had a rough time poor chick! They haven't pecked her enough to draw blood, but we've put them in adjoining cages for the night. There is nowhere for her to get away in the cage at night so we thought it was safest.

    Ironically on the way home from checking on her what do we see? The neighbor's dog out and running loose again! (and my poor frazzled neighbor trying to chase him down)
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I'd like to know what your neighbor had to say about what their dog did to your chickens? and so sorry for your loss. [​IMG] also [​IMG]
     
  7. gavinandallison

    gavinandallison Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 25, 2010
    Matthews, NC.
    shoot the dog!
     

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