I recently got this urgent request for help from a fellow chicken enthusiast:
|Photo Credit: Marc Nozell|
“HI, WENDY ~ REALLY ENJOY ALL THE INFO ON YOUR WEBSITE. I AM A SERIOUS LOVER OF CHICKENS AND ACTUALLY ALL BIRDS! SOMEONE BROUGHT ME A WEEK OLD BABY CHICKEN FROM A KINDERGARTEN CLASS ROOM THAT HAD BEEN INJURED, PRETTY BADLY. 🙁 THEY DIDN’T THINK IT WOULD MAKE IT, BUT I HAVE HAD THE LITTLE GUY FOR 3 DAYS AND HE IS EATING AND DRINKING WELL. I CALL HIM SCOOTER. IT SEEMS LIKE HIS LEG IS BROKEN OR DISLOCATED AT THE HIP, VERY TIP TOP OF WHERE HIS LEG BEGINS. IT STICKS STRAIGHT OUT TO THE SIDE AND HE KINDA PADDLES WITH IT TO GET AROUND. I HAVE TRIED VARIOUS SPLINTS TO NO AVAIL…MAYBE BECAUSE IT’S HIS HIP. HIS LEG SEEMS STRONG AND HIS TOES FINE, JUST HIS ENTIRE LEG STICKS STRAIGHT OUT TO HIS SIDE AND HE CAN’T STAND UP ON IT. HE SEEMS TO HAVE GROWN A LOT IN JUST THE 3 DAYS I HAVE HAD HIM. EVERYONE THOUGHT HE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HE DOESN’T SEEM TO BE IN PAIN, WHICH I KNOW IS VERY HARD TO TELL…BUT HE LOVES TO SNUGGLE AND SEEMS TO HAVE A VERY STRONG WILL TO LIVE. ANY SUGGESTIONS, MINUS A VET? I HAVE SPENT LITERALLY THOUSANDS ON A LITTLE BUNNY I HAVE AND I AM IN DEEP DEBT! THANK YOU FOR ANY IDEAS YOU MIGHT HAVE.”
First of all, I hear you about the vet. It’s a little tough to justify a huge vet bill on a chicken. While others may feel differently, I’ve learned to care for my birds as best I can on my own (which has even included foot surgery) and if a problem arises that I can’t correct or heal, then I make the decision to cull the bird. Fortunately, I’ve only had to do this a few times.