Rooster attacked by fox - gasping and shock 10 hours later. Help! the

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by FarmLivin15, Nov 16, 2019.

  1. FarmLivin15

    FarmLivin15 Chirping

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    My 6+ year old Rooster survived a fox attack this morning. He has been in shock all day and is still gasping for breathe quite a bit. We've put him in a box under a heat lamp in a quiet, dark room to help with the shock. We've also given him a bit of water a few times as well.

    Many tail feathers were ripped out and he has a large bald spot, but the only injuries I could find were very minimal small scrapes on his bottom (where feathers ripped out) and on his comb which was injured too (not badly). So far he seems to be able to stand and does so every once in a while. He also can lift his head up, however he will only hold his head up for moments, and then hangs his head down low. Whether he is lifting his head or has his head dropping, he really is gasping for breath a lot, sounding wheezy. When we first found him, he was standing but gasping for breath and actually had a lot of mucus coming out of his mouth that he was sort of gurgling on. That was hours ago and there doesn't seem to be any more mucus coming out. While I can't be sure of internal breathing, he has had his first droppings of the day which was very loose but had no signs of blood.

    I once had a chick attacked years ago that suffered ruptured lungs and I was able to successfully puncture the "balloon" to let the air out from under her skin - she lived. However, this doesn't appear to be the case with my rooster, Rhett. It's what I initially thought may be going on due to his wheezing, but there isn't any obvious signs of the air pockets under the skin.

    Any ideas of what might be going on?
    And ideas of what I can do to help him beyond what I am already doing?
    Thanks to everyone in advance for any advice!
     
    glassdragonfly likes this.
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

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    Sorry about your rooster, but glad that he didn’t suffer any major wounds. He might have some internal injuries, or just have been really frightened after the attack. Usually with a leaking air sac, there would be air ballooning under the skin in a large area. Being able to stand sounds like he will probably survive, and hopefully the neck is just very tired. They can suffer wry neck from injuries sometimes, but it doesn’t sound that bad. I would just keep him quiet, and have food and water where he can reach them. I would spray his bare spots with BluKote, but wait until he is ready to go out with the others. Let us know how he gets along.
     
  3. FarmLivin15

    FarmLivin15 Chirping

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    Thank you for your response. So far, he hasn't made any improvement. I hope his neck is just tired from an attack. I assume his neck isn't broken since he is able to lift his head. When he hangs his head low, it's almost as if he is passing out. He closes his eyes and becomes unresponsive and then suddenly lift his head a bit, gasping.
    I've got him in a warm spot in a box in my sunroom. He definitely isn't responsive enough to be in the coop. When he stands, he is very unstable and just wobbles about, crashing into the sides of the tall tote I have him in. Being more than 12 hours after the attack, I would think he would be more lucid at this point, but he is still in and out of it pretty bad.
    He's settled down at the moment and appears to be sleeping, so I will see how he does through the night and report back!
    Thanks!
     
    glassdragonfly and Eggcessive like this.
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

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    Let us know how he is doing tomorrow. He sounds like he is pretty sore. I have a rooster who hangs his head very low, almost curled under when he is dozing. But when he is out and about, it comes up normally. If you have some Poultry NutriDrench or Poultry Cell, those are very good electrolytes and vitamin tonics that might give him a boost. Dosage is 2-3 ml daily.
     
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  5. FarmLivin15

    FarmLivin15 Chirping

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    Sorry I haven't updated in a couple of days. It's really been touch and go to be honest.

    He hasn't made much improvement, yet he hasn't gotten worse either. When I say he "passes out", that is just what I mean. He is not sleeping -I've had many chickens over the years and this is not sleeping. He gasps for air then his eyes flutter and suddenly his head droops all the way down, then he will stir after a few seconds and bring his head back up. I don't think he can see out of his left eye either. He drinks water when I hold a bowl up to him, but he still hasn't eaten and was attacked Saturday morning. I've been giving him Poultry Cell which I had on hand.

    I also do think he must have wry neck. He doesn't hold his neck up straight and it's almost as if it is all curved up under his skin. He used to be a very upright chicken and now his neck sort of flops to the right. If he has wry neck from an injury (predator attack), is it possible to heal at his old age? And if so, what do I do? The only thing I have seen online is to put some sort of homemade "cast" around their neck to hold it straight, but he is still having breathing problems. He definitely appears to have some sort of air sac rupture, though there is only a very small balloon sac under the skin which I can't seem to relieve (I did try). The rupture appears to be also in his throat or stomach, since he still seems to have foam coming up out of his mouth when he gasps, especially after drinking water.

    At this point, we need to determine if we should cull him; we are giving it until tomorrow to decide. I just don't know if he can heal up, and the wry neck is pretty bad. For not having any major puncture woulds or scrapes, he is pretty messed up.

    Any advice on wry neck (is it treatable for older chickens) is appreciated. Thanks
     
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  6. penny1960

    penny1960 Yippy Do Da, Yipptye Ay!

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    Are you able to post a few photos sure would help
     
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  7. micstrachan

    micstrachan Free Ranging

    This poor rooster. Sorry about the attack. Is an avian vet an option?
     
    glassdragonfly likes this.
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    I bet the fox delivered several bites where its teeth penetrated into the air sac system which caused immediate ventilation problems. The rooster being old is slowing his healing. Give more time. In the past I would have started him on antibiotic regimen immediately, but either the drugs are not longer available over the counter or are no longer effective.
     
  9. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Enabler

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    Sorry that he is no better. Have you tried giving the vitamin E and other vitamins?
     
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  10. FarmLivin15

    FarmLivin15 Chirping

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    Thanks for everyone's responses! I will get some pictures in the very least, maybe a video if I can.

    We did call a few vets, but due to a law in Georgia, only clinics with a specific certification in exotic birds (yes!) can treat chickens. The closest vet to us that can treat him is an hour away and it would be $250 just for the initial exam. However we've also reached out to some farm animal rescues nearby, as surely there are other resources.

    I've been giving him Poultry Cell in his water. Poor guy, he seems about the same. But as he isn't worse, I don't want to cull him if he will pull through. He does seem a tad more responsive to noises and moves around a bit more whereas before he really wasn't reacting at all.
     
    Eggscaping likes this.

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