pullet with broken (badly fractured?) leg

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One of my pullets (2 1/2 months old) appears to have a broken leg. The chickens were all swarmed around my son's legs; as he tried to get away he tripped and fell and somehow broke one of the pullets' legs. It is the straight part of the unfeathered portion just above the foot. The "skin" is broken just enough to show a little blood; it is not actually "bleeding". The bone "gives" a little (not much, just enough to know that it's broken), but is not loose or dangling. She will not put weight on it. We have splinted the leg with sticks and strips of rag, but I don't know how well that will stay. I read in the archives that someone recommended using a small piece of garden hose, but I don't have a hose to sacrifice. A friend recommended separating her from the rest of the flock, which we did. What else should we do, or do differently? I was hoping the leg will heal, as I don't want to lose any pullets till I see which ones lay.


-- Cathy N. (keeper8@attcanada.ca), September 29, 2001


cornish hens ,,with mashed taters and gravy coms to mind

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), September 29, 2001.

Cathy, we had a hen attacked by a dog. Her leg was very badly fractured. We kept her in a safe place with food and water literally under her beak. She ate and drank readily. It took weeks before she could walk again, but she sort of flopped around on the good leg on one side and the wing on the broken side. Make sure your hen gets lots of sunlight without getting too hot. (Vitamin D for bones.) We gave ours chick starter and crushed corn to eat.

She's gimpy, but she gets around ok.

-- helen (funny@farms.r.us), September 29, 2001.

Cathy, ours, like Helen's survived, and did just fine. It does take a few weeks, just isolate her, and watch her behavior for any signs that the leg might be infected. They are tougher than we think, sometimes! Good luck, Jan

-- Jan in Co (Janice12@aol.com), September 30, 2001.

I nursed a little rooster back to health that my hens beat up to the brink of death. He had a leg that I thought he would never walk on again and just looked awful. I really got attached to him. Never could put him back in with the others again though. They never accepted him. Sometimes they won't take a hurt one back later, even another hen. I had to end up giving him away. Chickens are pretty tough little birds. I actually have a hen in a cage right now with a deformed leg that I am trying to decide what to do with. She is young...6 months..and came from a freind who couldn't bear to eat her. She is healthy and sweet and named Dumplin now. I think we will eventually have to butcher her. The other chickens won't leave her alone, and I can't stand to see an animal in a little cage like that forever. ...I guess why I am telling you this is so you can learn from my mistakes...have a plan for what you will do if the others won't accept her back. It happens alot. I never learn!! Good luck!

-- Jenny Pipes (Auntjenny6@aol.com), September 30, 2001.

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