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Hen survived attack, but what next.

broadwath hensbroadwath hens Junior Member
edited February 2007 in Poultry Health and Welfare
Last week a hen survived a bad dog attack, followed advice and she is being treated with antibiotics, wound treatment, isolated from others but in a pen outside in the day so they can see her- they were starting to peck her. But she has a bad limp. Can anyone say if they think this is temporary or if she will always have this, if so will I have to consider keeping her separate from now on.


  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    If there was muscle damage, she will have a bad limp for a while but hopefully will improve after a month or so... My only thought is that the dog may have broken a bone? You've got her on antibiotics, so she probablydoesn't have an infection, but just give her a good looking over to make sure that there are no festering wounds or bad smells coming from her anywhere. My suggestion is to keep her separate for now, in a relatively small enclosure to limit her movement- at least for a week. Ultimately, it would be good if you could take her to a vet for x-rays and a check over, but if this is not possible, you can keep her quiet for a bit and see if she feels better. You can get a drug called Metacam, an anti inflammatory drug, from your vet- it is dosed at a rate of 0.1 mg/kg for a bird. Alternately if you DO NOT think there is any internal bleeding (her comb is not pale, she is not lethargic - no blood in droppings) you could give her aspirin at a rate of 5 aspirin per gallon of water, given free choice. Give this for a day and see if she feels better. You can continue the aspirin but only for about 3 days, then reduce the dosage to 2 aspirin per gallon, just to give her a bit of a break from it. Hopefully it's just a matter of taking it easy for a bit, not having to move too far for food and water and having some time to heal. Keep her on antibiotics for now- how do her wounds look?

    Don't give up on her yet- she's been through a lot!

  • broadwath hensbroadwath hens Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    Thank you so much for all your advice it is greatly appreciated.
    Her wounds were deep and started to smell but since she has been on antibiotics tha smell has gone, they still look black around the edges but the vet will review them tomorrow. Interestingly she didn't have a limp the first two days, that seemed to come on later when the wound stated to smell.
    I have her in a 2 by2 metre pen out in the garden, I have had to put netting on the top as the other birds were flying in and she was trying to fly out.
    The other 3 birds keep walking around the pen and she stands by the gate opening while they do- it looks a very sad site. I have been bringing her in at night to an indoor sleeping box, she seems happy in there.
    fingers crossed she makes a full recovery as I don't want to have to keep her isolated for ever.
  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    Hi bh,

    How is she now? If you can keep the infection under control and keep those wounds clean, I think your little chook should be fine.Continue with the antibiotics for as long as the vet thinks she needs them- usually when the wounds are well on their way to healing and are showing no outward signs of infection, I like to keep them on for a couple days PAST that point to make sure all is well. In the meantime, if the wounds are deep, continue to wash them out and keep them clean. I like to flush deep wounds initially with a tea-coloured solution of iodine and water (just enough iodine in the water to make it the colour of strong tea). Squirt this in the wounds to flush out any pus and dirt, then flush again with sterile saline solution. After the wounds are healing well, don't flush with the betadine solution anymore, just the saline. Pack the wounds with an antibiotic ointment. The important thing is to keep them draining- if it's a deep wound, don't let an big, thick scab form over the wound as this will seal in infection. As for her limp - it's possible that she has an infection going on in her muscle which causes her some discomfort when she moves. Did you get her xrayed or checked by the vet to make sure nothing is broken?

    If it was your dog, then there's nothing to really do about that, but if it was your neighbour's dog that attacked her, maybe they could help out with vet bills? Just a thought.

    Is she eating and drinking well?

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