Possible predator attack - bad wound - treatment? Wound care?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by sumi, Mar 19, 2012.

  1. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    One of my 4 month old pullets had the skin on the back of her head ripped off, just missing her eyes and comb. It's quite a large area and though it stopped bleeding, I'm a bit concerned. I could actually see her skull! We are 90% sure it was a predator attack. I bought some antiseptic cream to put on it. Would that be enough? Heaven knows what germs that rubbish had in its mouth, I'm worried about infection.
    I've never had to deal with an injury as bad as this and I'm a bit clueless as to what to do. Not to mention a bit freaked out! I don't know if I should phone the vet or if I can sort it out myself. Any advice would be much appreciated!
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2012
  2. eaglequest

    eaglequest Out Of The Brooder

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    We had one a few yrs ago with similar sounding wounds. Ours also had her neck skin ripped off. She was a leghorn mix pullet we'd bought at feedstore & I thought for sure she would die. But I'm a nurse and my kids BEGGED me to "save" her. I kept it clean as possible and kept her in a makeshift cage (horse tank with wire mesh over top and food & water within reach. I kept that in a sort of dim lit area to keep her calm. She ended up not only surviving but was the 1st of our pullets to start laying (started laying while still locked in that horse water tank!). Her neck never feathered back out.[​IMG] My kids named her "the hurt chicken".
     
  3. Country4ever

    Country4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had one of my easter eggers have the skin on its back pulled off in a coon attack. I brought her into the house and put her in a dog crate. I sponged the area with diluted betadine and then put some triple antibiotic ointment all over it. I put a telfa pad over it, but after a few days, I left it off. Every few days I would clean it again with diluted betadine and more ointment. After about 2 weeks, I quit doing that. She was completely healed and refeathered in a month! They have an amazing ability to heel.
    I really think you must keep her separated from the others, or they will constantly peck on it. Also....if you're in a hot area, you want to keep maggots away from it. That's mostly why I brought my hen inside, since it was in the summer.
    Good luck with your little one. I'm sure she'll be fine.
    One more thing.......if it was an attack, they'll be back.
     
  4. tmfineg

    tmfineg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Gallatin TN
    We had a dog tear the skin off the back of our chickens neck. I recommend triple antibiotic ointment without pain reliever daily. I would only use betadine for the initial cleansing only. I have read, on this forum, it can damage healing tissue.

    We isolated our chicken until the wound healed and she was fine. The skin grew back, which was amazing because there was a 4 inch area where we could see her muscle. She is still missing her feathers. The only long term issue is that if the feather don't grow back and you have a rooster, he could do damage during mating because there are no feathers to hold on to. Also be prepared for her to get picked on a little when you introduce her back to the flock. Good luck!
     
  5. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Thank you! Just a quick update: she's sitting on my shoulder now, watching me type. I'm keeping her in the house, with the doors open so she can come and go and mingle with the other chickens, though we're keeping an eye on her. No pecking so far... She lively and happy looking, apart from the wound, which is clean and dry, no more bleeding or discharge, thankfully. Am going to put more antiseptic cream on, which is all I've got here. I must get a first-aid box together for chicken emergencies.
     
  6. Country4ever

    Country4ever Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Glad to hear she's doing well!
     

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