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Pet chicken swallowed iron bolt

Trivia TimTrivia Tim Junior Member
edited February 2007 in Poultry Health and Welfare
Last night my pet chicken swallowed a small iron bolt, no more than 1cm in diameter. Should this give me any reason to worry?

I'm guessing it will stay in the gizzard, but for how long? Will it slowly dissolve in there? Could there be a problem with too much iron in her diet, so to speak?

Comments

  • SandySandy Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    It may lodge in the opening to the gizzard.. and if it has a pointy end it may puncture the crop... this will cause a leakage into the abdominal area... causing poisoning

    If it does move into the gizzard.. it will not disolve... it will kill the bird more than likely

    If it stays in the crop it may just sit there for a time .. but over time it will move into the outlet... gizzard... crop lining or something and the bird will look unwell... give little indication that something is wrong... stop eating.. stop drinking and die in pain

    You can have the bird operated on ... open the skin at the top of the crop... move the cut area. (small cut .. very small) and cut a small opening in the crop and remove the item.. .. if you cut small enough you will not even have to stitch the crop or skin up.. it will heal over quickly

    It can be done very quickly by somebody who knows what they are doing, sorry to be such a bad news person here ..
  • tarkatarka Member
    edited February 2007
    Best of luck Tim
    What would the cost be Sandy for this type of procedure at the vet's ?
  • Aspen Hill FarmAspen Hill Farm Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    I bet it will be fine.
  • Trivia TimTrivia Tim Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    Thanks for your honesty, Sandy. Our little chicken is a very important part of our life so it's best to know what the situation is.

    One error I made in my initial posting: it wasn't a bolt but a small iron nut that she swallowed. No more than 1cm in diameter, with no sharp edges. Does that change the situation?
  • crazychickcrazychick Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    I wouldn't worry too much- I had a chicken eat one of my diamond earrings... panicked (not because I lost my earring but because I thought that my hen would die!). I phoned the vet, who promptly told me that I should bring her in, have her euthanized and then he could get my earring back! Well, that is obviously NOT what I wanted to hear... He misunderstood my request. Then, he told me that she would probably pass the earring through and be fine. So, I waited patiently, not to get my earring back, but to make sure that she didn't get sick from having the earring puncture her gizzard. It never did and she's still fine today, 5 years later. As for the bolt, I would guess that it will pass through her- their gizzards are pretty darn tough and I doubt the nut will cause problems. However, just to be sure, you may want to phone your vet and bring her in for xrays, just in case it's still lodged in her gizzard. Having it removed would be a fairly invasive surgery, but if it needs to come out and wont' pass through on its own, you may have to resort to that. The gizzards of birds are made to handle pebbles that are 1cm and less so she should be just fine...

    good luck,

    Laura
  • SandySandy Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    Trivia Tim wrote:
    Thanks for your honesty, Sandy. Our little chicken is a very important part of our life so it's best to know what the situation is.

    One error I made in my initial posting: it wasn't a bolt but a small iron nut that she swallowed. No more than 1cm in diameter, with no sharp edges. Does that change the situation?

    Yes that certainly does change the situation... being that small and round without any sharp edges it should pass through no problems .. no sharp edges phew... that's a relief...

    Also .. the only time you would even contempate an operation is when something sharp that has been swollowed is in the crop... not the gizzard.. once in the gizzard the chances of survival for the bird is extremely low.. in the crop the chances are quite high

    I would still keep a close eye on her crop over the next 6 months... making sure she is digesting her food properly...

    Once a week before she gets out to eat in the morning... go out early ... feel her crop.. its about 4 to 5 inches down her neck to the right of the side.. feel that it is empty... not hard or a hard lump.. if it is hard.. then she has a crop impaction.. something is stopping the food from moving into the gizzard to be digested.. and it needs to be addressed.. and more than likely it will be the nut logged into the opening either sideways or round only allowing very small amounts of food to pass into the gizzard

    If your aware of these things you can keep your eyes open for any thing off beat and treat it early before it becomes a really bad problem and the bird has been without food for too long and weak ..
  • Trivia TimTrivia Tim Junior Member
    edited February 2007
    That really is a relief. Thank you Sandy and Laura. There aren't many vets in these parts so it's good to know I can monitor her health myself for the time being.

    I should also learn to tell the difference between nuts and bolts!
  • SandySandy Senior Member
    edited February 2007
    My Pleasure

    If you have any more questions.. please ask
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