Young Hen with rope wire wrapped around legs and head pecked; advise?


In the Brooder
9 Years
Jun 2, 2010
North Fort Myers
I found this hen at the barn where my horses are kept. I noticed she was just standing still with her head down, so i looked closer and saw both her legs were wound tight with a rope covered wire ( tight). And her head looks like the other chickens had been pecking it, it was red and very raw but not really an open gaping wound. Also her eyes were both closed and swollen. I picked her up and the first thing I thought to do was drip some cut-heal on her head. So I brought her home and my husband and I cut the wire off her legs. One of the legs was partly black (loss of blood flow?) but since has become normal colored. She is now standing up, and looks stronger, but my concern is her eyes are still closed, There was a slight open slit where I could she her eyes moving inside, but now it is closed again. I had a very small syringe that I was squirting water into her mouth, and she did start dipping her beak into the water bowl, but she is not eating. The top of her head is now crusty black, and it all looks very dry, but I am concerned with the eyes and the not eating.Also she actually seems to be taking a couple steps here and there too, so I am hoping there is no permanent damage to her legs.Any suggestions for help with this little hen would be appreciated!
Try trickling the liquid from a carton of yogurt into her beak. If you get her to try to eat, raw liver is good medicine. Hope she makes it.
Separate her from the other chickens. Add sugar and vitamins to her water. Boil an egg and mash it. It will give her energy to help her heal. Blue coat is supposed to help conceal and heal wounds. Make sure she is warm but not too hot. Sounds like she is in shock. Sorry about your poor chicken, hope she will be ok.
x2 certainly separate her from your other chickens. Swollen eyes can be a respiratory infection and they can be contagious. Hopefully, she was just a little dehydrated and got picked on with that wire around her feet. I hope she starts to do better.
Yea with the previous comments. I would also give her some anti biotic. You say you found her at the barn where you board your horse. Do they have chickens? I'm concerned that either someone was butching and that's why the legs were wrapped in wire or someone was torturing her. If they were butchering they didn't do a very good job of keeping track of their chickens. If someone was torturing her that's seriously messed up. Either way she is very lucky to have caught your attention. Thanks for taking her in.
Thank you all for your replies. The man who owns the barn now has over 20 chickens, ( when I got there in the end of January there were 5 hens 1 rooster, and 5 baby chicks. The hurt hen is one of those babies. He now has over 20, they just keep reproducing. He has no coop, they just run wild, and he throws them corn every evening. I'm pretty sure she just got entangled in this wire and then the others were pecking her. I took her home because he doesn't care about them. There are eggs everywhere~when I catch a fresh one I grab it and take it home, haven't had to buy eggs in awhile!. I will do as you all said and keep you posted. Thanks again!
So my new girl seems to be getting a little livelier, got some yogurt in her and she is drinking the sugar water. She is not as lethargic as she was. Is there anything I can do about her eyes? Do you think that when I dripped the cut-heal on the raw spot on her head it could have hurt in any way? It just seems like the whole area from the top of her head and her eye area is just so dry, is there any way I can moisten that area ?
Neosporin ointment without the pain killer will help keep the injured areas pliable. Chickens are brutal and will attack any deemed as weak. With her legs hobbled she was "weak." Chickens are quite resilient. The swelling of her face is due to the pecking. I'm betting on a full recovery. You are doing a very kind thing in caring for her.

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