Starting a Chicken hospital here, dog attack, weird feathers and another that laid a yolk and white.

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Mrsdressup, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    Last week a dog got into my backyard and was caught dragging one of my 5 chickens - she was stopped and the chicken was rescued but by the time I got to her the wounds already smelt, putrid infection had set in. I cleaned her (so I thought) and treated the nasty wound I found not knowing there was another even deeper just out of sight. I found that 2 days later and it was awful, black skin and seeping slime. Lovely. More hydrogen peroxide and triple anti-biotic cream! Anyway she's doing ok for the time being, the skin looks healthy enough and the wounds are starting to scab over and she's eating drinking and pooping happily, she's even laying eggs. I'm sort of on top of this one homework wise although very new to doctoring chickens.

    I noticed another that looks like she's growing all new feathers and complains heavily when I pick her up. I brought her inside to see if she was injured by the dog also, but now I'm thinking she's going through a molt? The timing seems all off though it's winter too cold for her to do that. I don't know really what is going on with her yet but she's loving her indoor vacation.

    3 chickens left outside and tonight I went to close them in and one had a yolk and a white streaming from her vent. I know she has already laid a perfect egg today and I was wondering if maybe it was one of those stress events causing her to expel an immature egg - changes in the flock, dog attack, and the cold temps we've been having, and I shut them in rather later than normal... She's only been laying about 4 months. I really don't want to have a broken shell inside, I guess I'll bring her in also for observation.

    Advice is greatly appreciated this is overwhelming!

    Should I bring the other 2 inside for visiting hours, or will they do something to get themselves admitted?

    My birds are Red Sussex and I can take pictures if you'd like. Thanks, Christine.
     
  2. Sarevan

    Sarevan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know the feeling of one thing happening after another, take breath and relax a minute.

    K the girl that has the new pin feathers and in a possible molt. Yep dead of winter it can happen. Three of our California Greys are feathering in from molting during the coldest temps we have had and they won't be a year old until March. They looked like porcupines on the head it was funny but when it started I was looking them over looking for mites and lice with a magnfying glass! They did get dusted anyway, as 2 new birds had them. As long as she isn't totally nakey of feathers she should be fine. Mine had feathers gone from head, back, wings and lost the long tail feathers. They were still mostly covered so they stayed outside just kept an eye on them for signs of being too cold or frostbite. Flockmates were gracious enough to allow them to huddle up as needed.

    The girl recovering from dog attack. Where were the wounds? Pictures are helpful as others can give advice on care and even more learn from what you are going through. I think as long as the wounds are no longer draining, skin is pink or even a bit red at edges it is healing fine. If it is hot at wound site possibility of deep infection and may need to be cleaned to allow to drain. ( I am not a vet tech or any certified animal husbandry) From what you have described it sounds she is recovering nicely and may be happy to see a flock member while in hospital.
     
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  3. ten chicks

    ten chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The girl growing new feathers is probably starting a molt,even in winter,crazy timing but it is what it is. Stress can also trigger a molt"hard molt"will progress in the same manner is a normal molt.Chickens do not usually like to be held when molting(new feathers can be painful when touched/irritating/itchy) this is why your girl was complaining when you picked her up. If you are seeing pin feathers,my guess is a molt.

    Injured girl,make sure you clean wounds couple times a day to get infection under control.Remove the black tissue(necrotic/dead)leave wounds uncovered this allows the air to dry and the wounds to drain. Wounds will heal from the inside out. Keep applying antibiotic ointment.

    Girl with leaking yolk/white fluid,bring her inside,clean her up,monitor her. This can happen with new layers,it is usually just a glitch in their reproductive system. Could also indicate broken egg internally,see if she lays an egg today,check her poop,if everything looks normal and she is eating/drinking,then it was probably a glitch.

    You are doing fine and you have everything under control,remember the rule "bad/good things happen in threes"i have found this to be true. You are now at your quota,so you should be good for awhile. Lol
     
  4. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for chiming in - first an update: I believe it was just a laying glitch in chicken # 3 - the next day she laid a shell-less egg (which has to mean no shell is inside her as it would have surely broken that fragile blob open right?) And today she laid a perfect egg! Phew!!!

    Mrs. Molty is starting to look better and is tolerating contact better so I put her out with the others (it's warmed up) she is kind of acting the bully so I'm sure she'll be ok.

    My dog attack hen unwisely gave herself a dirt bath yesterday getting wood chips and poop into her gouges. I had to clean her out with a syringe of warm water and tweezers, then more hydrogen peroxide and triple antibiotic cream. She was well enough this morning to take her for a visit outside but they quickly started picking on her so she's back inside. Her comb is bleeding a bit but that hardly scares me now. I still need to get pictures. She has some black tissue left inside the gouges I can't get at but she's stopped smelling bad that's a good sign. She's still laying an egg a day - we shouldn't eat these right?? Took her no time to train me to come, lol, she does her alert call if she's low on water or just lonely.

    Thanks for letting me know a molt can happen anytime, I did not know that. I have diatomatious earth (edible grade) but I have no idea what to do with it. For dust baths my girls just dig a hole and I'm not sure how to add to that. I'd like to do a dusting that really wound not hurt them.
     
  5. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    I took a few photos of my injured one, She looks perky enough but those wounds are yucky.
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Some of the flesh around it looks hardened and yellowed - no idea what to do about that, anyone? The top wound was not discovered until 2 days after and is healing much slower.
     
  6. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    Another update, bottom holes cleared of infection and have nearly closed up, the top one is doing somewhat better, I was able to remove half the black skin and that part is looking really good. The rest is not coming off I'm worried it's attached to bone. I know from eating chickens they do not have much meat right where she was bitten. Bleeding skin is living skin and every day I do my best to scrub or tweeze my way down to it. She is starting to show signs the infection is getting to her she is more lethargic and there's a sour scent to her poop. Not worried yet, she's remarkably resilient and very patient in letting me learn and practice on her. I just really hope I can get it before the infection gets her, I learnt today there is a vet that will see her, my funds are very limited do you think it's worthwhile still? I would love to get her on antibiotics.

    I'm surprised at how wonderful she's been as an inside pet, better by far than guinea pigs (whose cage she is in.) She's cleaner, smells better and more entertaining. Plus eggs! Had I known I would have kept one in my house always.
     
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  7. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    Well Squeaker is all healed up now, that awful black scab finally lifted and the healthy pink skin let go of the infection and the gouge closed almost overnight. Chickens are crazy resilient, I don't understand why there was all the talk of culling her in the articles I read earlier on. She cost me 2 tubes of triple antibiotic ointment, it was more than worth it. Quite a learning experience, of both what she and I could tolerate.

    Problem now is re-integrating her, I've tried twice and it's ended up in bloody fights, and more time convalescing while her comb heals. I think part of it is she smells different that antibiotic goop has kind of made a mess of her tail feathers and I'd really like to know how to clean that out - how do you bathe a chicken??? Additionally does anyone have any suggestions for making the re-integration go better?

    In a sort of rush as her cage has 2 baby Muscovy Ducklings (chickens are a gateway farm animal it's true) in it now and she is in a parrot cage which is kind of an awful fit.
     
  8. Sarevan

    Sarevan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    White Swan, WA
    You may have to make an area in the coop / run where they can see each other but not get to her to reintroduce her to the flock again. She will be the low hen till pecking order is established again.

    I read somewhere here in forums that they misted all the birds with vinegar, and or lavender water so they all smelled the same to reintroduce. After a week or more of seeing each other hen was put on roost at night with other hens.

    You can use Dawn dish soap to bathe a hen, warm water in a sink, tub, or other container that you can get her in up to at least her wings. Will need to be throughly dried, wrap in a towel to absorp as much water as possible. Then a blow dryer, keep it moving so you don't burn her. Sometimes takes overnight for them to fully dry. So need to keep her warm.

    So glad she recovered!
     
  9. Mrsdressup

    Mrsdressup Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you, Squeaker is getting a Spa day, with complimentary vinegar mist for all her friends. Thanks for your help.
     

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