Seeking recommendations for injured hen

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by RIRob, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. RIRob

    RIRob New Egg

    Dec 1, 2013
    This past Friday, one of my hens, a 1.5 year old Golden-laced Polish, was attacked by a hawk. In addition to losing a small patch of feathers, her injuries 'appear' to be isolated to relatively minor lacerations around one of her eyes. There does not appear to be an infection, and the area has been cleaned. However, since the attack, she has remained listless and unresponsive. She will drink water if provided via syringe or if her beak is dipped into a bowl of water. She sits or stands with her head upright - however, she has not eaten in two days, does not move beyond changing her position and remains despondent (she is not typically very tame and, if anything, tends to be one of my more pushy hens). I would have thought that by now that either her condition would have worsened or improved, but neither has been the case (although the fact that she has not eaten could be indicative of a worsened state). I am uncertain how to proceed but in my mind am considering euthanasia if her condition doesn't show some signs of improvement within the next 24 hours.

    Does anyone have any recommendations? I've attempted to feed her boiled egg and even some cheese (this hen, in particular, has always loved cheese), but without success. I need to do more research on-line, but I'm considering supplementing electrolytes into the water that she will take to see if that produces any positive outcome.

    I'd love to hear what other's have done in the past or whether this is a lost cause...

    Thanks so much!


  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Flock Master Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    Sorry about your hen. I would offer scrambled egg to get her interested in eating. (Oops, sorry I just re-read that you did that.) Chickens can go into shock for awhile after being attacked, and it is also possible she has a head injury. If she doesn't start eating today, I would probably get some aquarium tubing from WalMart, and a large syringe from the farm store, and tube feed her. She should get 1 ounce every 6-8 hours of liquid. Here is a link for instructions:
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2013
  3. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

    She may have some unnoticed puncture wounds but I would hold off on putting her down and provide 25% sugar and 75% water (or maybe 50-50) sugar to water just to provide her with some calories or energy.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by