Raccoon Attack - Need Advice For Ailing Rooster

TJ

Songster
13 Years
Feb 7, 2007
174
14
216
Missouri
Hello everyone, sadly we had a raccoon attack the other night in our chicken house. It killed one hen and injured our rooster, he's a big rooster and sweet. I found him sitting in the chicken house with blood on his neck and face and his eyes closed. I talked to him and picked him up and brought him to the house where I inspected for injuries but I did not find any. He is in our back bathroom in a pen, I can't get him to eat or drink and he won't open his eyes. He rested during the night and when I checked on him this morning, he was standing up in the pen, still with his eyes closed.
I was going to clean up his face but what I am needing is what to do at this point ... I have a veterinary syringe set, do I force feed and water him? I have put poultry vitamins in his water but I'm not sure that he is drinking. I understand that he is probably in shock, and it doesn't look like there are any injuries to his eyes, he just keeps them closed. Could you please give me advice?
When we talk to him he does do a low kind of chortle/cluck, I'm hoping that is a good sign. Anyway, thank you for reading and any advice you can give.
Kind regards,
tj
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,472
10,831
611
North Florida
Did you separate feathers and go over him thoroughly looking for wounds? Punctures can hide and be hard to find, you really need to be thorough and go over every inch of him. I would try to clean up his face gently so you can see if there are any injuries there. Raccoons will grab and pull, so he may have muscle or tendon damage or bruising and be very sore. Bruising that may show up will often look greenish. Internal injuries are always a risk, and hard to say, time will usually tell. Hydration is much more important than food initially, if he's not drinking then I would try to get some fluids in him. If you have some poultry nutridrench it can be good in circumstances like this, it gives them a bit of a boost, and can help with appetite. Be very careful syringing water, only give .5cc at a time and let him swallow. Don't squirt it forcefully into the beak as that could make him aspirate. Drip it into the front of the beak and let him swallow. Some birds will drink if you dip the beak in water. If he's dehydrated then 14ml per pound of weight and then repeat in 60-90 minutes, to get him hydrated. Alternately you can tube fluids, which is a bit safer, less risk of aspirating. But if he has neck injuries that could be an issue.Sometimes it just takes time when they've been injured. Make sure he's warm enough, sick birds can get hypothermic.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/go-team-tube-feeding-updated-12-29-2019.805728/
 

TJ

Songster
13 Years
Feb 7, 2007
174
14
216
Missouri
:goodpost:
I came across this thread when my hen had my dog attack her unfortunately, it was helpful to me. Good luck with your rooster.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/wound-care-guidance-what-to-use-and-why.1218324/
Did you separate feathers and go over him thoroughly looking for wounds? Punctures can hide and be hard to find, you really need to be thorough and go over every inch of him. I would try to clean up his face gently so you can see if there are any injuries there. Raccoons will grab and pull, so he may have muscle or tendon damage or bruising and be very sore. Bruising that may show up will often look greenish. Internal injuries are always a risk, and hard to say, time will usually tell. Hydration is much more important than food initially, if he's not drinking then I would try to get some fluids in him. If you have some poultry nutridrench it can be good in circumstances like this, it gives them a bit of a boost, and can help with appetite. Be very careful syringing water, only give .5cc at a time and let him swallow. Don't squirt it forcefully into the beak as that could make him aspirate. Drip it into the front of the beak and let him swallow. Some birds will drink if you dip the beak in water. If he's dehydrated then 14ml per pound of weight and then repeat in 60-90 minutes, to get him hydrated. Alternately you can tube fluids, which is a bit safer, less risk of aspirating. But if he has neck injuries that could be an issue.Sometimes it just takes time when they've been injured. Make sure he's warm enough, sick birds can get hypothermic.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/go-team-tube-feeding-updated-12-29-2019.805728/
Did you separate feathers and go over him thoroughly looking for wounds? Punctures can hide and be hard to find, you really need to be thorough and go over every inch of him. I would try to clean up his face gently so you can see if there are any injuries there. Raccoons will grab and pull, so he may have muscle or tendon damage or bruising and be very sore. Bruising that may show up will often look greenish. Internal injuries are always a risk, and hard to say, time will usually tell. Hydration is much more important than food initially, if he's not drinking then I would try to get some fluids in him. If you have some poultry nutridrench it can be good in circumstances like this, it gives them a bit of a boost, and can help with appetite. Be very careful syringing water, only give .5cc at a time and let him swallow. Don't squirt it forcefully into the beak as that could make him aspirate. Drip it into the front of the beak and let him swallow. Some birds will drink if you dip the beak in water. If he's dehydrated then 14ml per pound of weight and then repeat in 60-90 minutes, to get him hydrated. Alternately you can tube fluids, which is a bit safer, less risk of aspirating. But if he has neck injuries that could be an issue.Sometimes it just takes time when they've been injured. Make sure he's warm enough, sick birds can get hypothermic.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/go-team-tube-feeding-updated-12-29-2019.805728/

Hello Coach723, thank you so much for all of the information! I have looked him over again and only see dried blood on his wattle, comb and where it ran down his feathers on the front. I am heading to the feedstore to see about getting the poultry nutridrench. I filled a dixie cup with poultry vitamin water and put it up to his beak and he did drink, some, but not much. I've also taken a warm wash cloth and cleaned him up as much as he would allow me. :eek:/ He just won't open his eyes so I'm just keeping an eye on him for now and see what tomorrow brings.
Again, thank you for responding!
~tj
 

TJ

Songster
13 Years
Feb 7, 2007
174
14
216
Missouri
:goodpost:
I came across this thread when my hen had my dog attack her unfortunately, it was helpful to me. Good luck with your rooster.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/wound-care-guidance-what-to-use-and-why.1218324/

Hello HippieAtHeart, (love the name btw ;o) Thank you so much for the link, I did read it and will do that today. I did clean his wattle and comb and feathers of blood, some of it especially on his comb was stubborn but I got as much as I could. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day yet.
Thank you again!
~tj
 

HippieAtHeart

Peace, Love & Chickens ✌️
Mar 22, 2020
441
540
181
Southeastern Pennsylvania
Hello HippieAtHeart, (love the name btw ;o)
Thanks ✌️
Thank you so much for the link, I did read it and will do that today. I did clean his wattle and comb and feathers of blood, some of it especially on his comb was stubborn but I got as much as I could. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day yet.
Thank you again!
~tj
Glad you were able to clean him up some. The post mentioned antibiotics which I didn’t do at first, but if you have them it would be a good idea. My hen definitely needed them by the time I got them to her, I wish I had been able to start sooner. I used terramycin scour tabs which is for cows, 1/4 tablet in morning 1/4 at night.

Let us know how he is doing tomorrow :)
 

TJ

Songster
13 Years
Feb 7, 2007
174
14
216
Missouri
Hello again, my rooster is still living, he seems somewhat alert and he takes maybe a step or two but that is it. Sadly, his eyes still aren't open. He is drinking as long as I put it up to him and I gave him a bit of yogurt earlier because he used to love it before.
I'm noticing something that is giving me a gut feeling that there is something more wrong than what I'm seeing. I did a thorough check all over and did not see any bite wounds but I've noticed today he seems to hold his beak open slightly and take what looks like a big sigh. I've seen this before and it was always before a chicken was dying. My question this time, how do you know that you're prolonging the inevitable? I don't want him to suffer but I'm just feeling really unsure today is all.
Anyway, I know this community understands and I just had to share.
Again, thank you.
~tj
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,472
10,831
611
North Florida
Sometimes it's hard to know for sure, he may be really, really sore and have swelling that makes breathing hard, or it may be worse. It's hard to say since we can't see him. If he's drinking, I would continue to offer water often. I always give them time, you can always decide to end it if you feel he is suffering and there isn't hope of getting better. I've seen some birds recover from some horrific things, but every case is different. :hugs
 

HippieAtHeart

Peace, Love & Chickens ✌️
Mar 22, 2020
441
540
181
Southeastern Pennsylvania
Hello again, my rooster is still living, he seems somewhat alert and he takes maybe a step or two but that is it. Sadly, his eyes still aren't open. He is drinking as long as I put it up to him and I gave him a bit of yogurt earlier because he used to love it before.
I'm noticing something that is giving me a gut feeling that there is something more wrong than what I'm seeing. I did a thorough check all over and did not see any bite wounds but I've noticed today he seems to hold his beak open slightly and take what looks like a big sigh. I've seen this before and it was always before a chicken was dying. My question this time, how do you know that you're prolonging the inevitable? I don't want him to suffer but I'm just feeling really unsure today is all.
Anyway, I know this community understands and I just had to share.
Again, thank you.
~tj
Sorry your rooster still hasn’t opened his eyes and is doing that sigh. :(

I’m just curious did you give him any antibiotics? A puncture would should ideally get them. I used terramycin scour tablets from TSC (like $30 for a big bottle), 1/4 in morning 1/4 pill at night for a week. I crushed it up mixed with half a spoonful of water and used a baby Tylenol syringe rubbing along the side of her beak slowly so she got most of it. The whole shooting down their throat thing was not something I could have managed, and I certainly couldn’t have done a needle...

I would be lying if I hadn’t thought about culling my hen that was attacked, but ultimately decided not to and it has been a good decision. It doesn’t mean it couldn’t have ended up the other way but I think she just had the strength to survive. You know your rooster better than anyone, you need to do what you feel is in his best interest, whichever way that may be. Keep us posted, you’re in my thoughts :hugs
 

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