A few days ago, Inga, one of my Swedish Flower Hen pullets - about 16 weeks of age - started limping. I brought her in to the mud room in our house and put her in a huge dog crate with a sweet cockerel who is very bonded to her. The cockerel had been limping just a bit too, so I figured it wouldn't kill him to bring him in too. I started doing Epsom salt soaks each day to see it it would help, but initially I wasn't really certain what the issue was. (His & Her Spa Treatment) Last night after another soak and a very thorough inspection I decided it looked most like a slipped tendon in my pullet's hock. She had shown no improvement over the last couple of days in confinement. Normally I would cull a bird like this... But... since she is a rare breed and a fairly rare color for that breed... and since she does not seem unhappy in the crate with her beau, I decided to give her a few weeks and see if I can at very least get her to a point where she is comfortable and able to get around. I don't care if she never walks properly again as long as she is not uncomfortable. Now mind you, if this experiment does not work and her pain is persistent, I will not force a life of pain and solitude upon her. Period. So for now, this is what I am trying: The main issue and cause of her discomfort is that the tendon no longer holds the hock in place or keeps the leg stable. Thus, the leg tends to turn straight outward from the hock if she tries to put weight upon it. This must be very painful! I read about a way to stretch the leg and help the tendon go back in place... (Gently stretch the entire leg straight back as far as it will go and try to push the tendon back into place) ... this can be done, but often the tendon will slip back out. I tried this last night and then fully immobilized her leg with a bandage. This full immobilization made it very difficult for her to move at all, and I could see she was very unhappy like this. This morning I removed the bandage and left her alone with her beau (Frederic) and let the conundrum rattle about in my head for a few hours. I needed to prevent the joint from turning outward, but still allow it to bend the correct way. I have seen braces made for human knees that have a hinged-joint to achieve this very thing... but where on earth would I find a chicken-size hinged brace?? And this is the contraption I came up with: I started with these: I cut the plastic handles off, just leaving the hinge and long shanks. I then wrapped the metal (it's not too sharp... they're made for small children, after all) in medical tape - leaving the hinge area clear and mobile. I cut a piece of thick material into a butterfly shape like this: This allows the leg to be protected from the metal while not bunching up too much in the joint area. I hope this will allow for more movement. I bandaged over the fabric with Vet Wrap first, making sure the leg was fully protected, and then set the metal scissor hinge on the outside of the leg, aligned with the joint. I took more Vet Wrap and wrapped over the top and bottom of the metal to hold it in place, leaving the joint bare to allow for movement. So far, Inga is able to move about the cage much better than she was when her leg was fully immobilized, and she seems much happier... albeit she seems to think purple might have been a better color choice. If anyone is interested in following this story, I'll post updates when I can.