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#11432 - 10/21/03 04:14 AM help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Well, despite the good warnings I kept reading on this board, I didn't think it would happen to me. But his afternoon while I was at work, my wife called just to chat. She had the day off and I asked the usual question, how are the chickies. I heard an unusual noise in the background, like a chicken wailing after its throat is cut. Dianne went outside and she said, "I have to call you back, there's feathers everywhere." She called back a few minutes later, which seemed an eternity, and was crying. One chicken was dead but she couldn't tell which one, two were missing, and three were barely moving. Dianne managed to whack one of the four dogs with a broom handle before all of them ran away.

She collected the three and put them in a rubbermaid container with towels, then came to get me from work. When we got back to the house we found another chicken barely alive, hiding between a wall and the base of a tree. The last chicken, a wild local hen that grew fond of my grape treats and stuck around, was safe because she flew into a fenced area.

The others were all pets, RIRs, so I'm trying not to get emotional. Luckily Dianne is a dentist and is used to blood and trauma, so after she calmed down we flushed the wounds with saline solution and she sutured them with what we had handy -- a sewing needle and 4 lbs. test monofilament line (Stren, for you fisherfolk. She called a coworker to bring us some oral antibiotics (amoxycillin) and we rounded up some animal grade intramuscular antibiotics (Tylan/Tylosin) from the local feedstore. The amoxycillin is usually for human patients, and the Tylan is indicated for cattle and swine according to the label. We administered the amoxycillin orally through a needleless syringe, about 5 ccs, and used the Tylan just as a flush of the wounds, not intramuscularly.

Nuku was missing two patches of skin on her back, about the size of a Twinkie. Chicken skin stretches though so Dianne was able to close the wounds, which did not appear to pierce the muscle except for 3 or four small puncture wounds on her left thigh and right wing. Nuku also had a patch of skin missing from the back of her neck about the size of a thumb. That wound sutured up well, too. It's been about 5 hours since the attack and Nuku seems to be responding well. Before she kept her eyes closed in pain, but now she's opened them and appears alert despite not being able to move. We've been giving her the oral antibiotics and Gatorade mixed with a little egg yolk.

Humu had her tail chewed up with a few punctures and some small patches of skin missing, but otherwise she seems fine. She's eating when we put food in front of her, especially her favorite, grapes. No sutures on Humu, just some Neosporin on the mostly superficial wounds.

Both Humu and Nuke are a year old.

Questions:

Are the antibiotics, oral amoxycillin and topically applied Tylan, OK to keep administering?

What should I be syringe feeding the hen that can't eat on her own? Current mixture OK?

Temperature here is a balmy 81F/26C and humid.

The hens' feathers and feet are dirty with dried blood and mud. Should I just leave them as is? I cleaned up as much as I could around the wounds and applied gauze bandages over the sutures.

Any other suggestions much appreciated.

The 6 month old roosters, Jack and Jill, were the worst off, missing probably 1/4 of their skin and feathers with deep puncture wounds. They didn't make it and died about an hour after the attack. Nuku

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#11433 - 10/21/03 08:59 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Michele Burns Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 08/22/03
Posts: 261
Loc: Ohio
Oh God. I admire you and your wife. I hope one of the more experience people on here answers you soon. Hang in there and hope everything and all the girls turn out ok!
_________________________
Michele Burns

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#11434 - 10/21/03 10:14 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Oh! my dear, Buk Buk,

I am so sorry. I would feed yogurt with live cultures or other probiotics (available if you have a health food store)several times a day spaced away from when the antibiotics are given to replace the gut flora lost to the antibiotics.

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your chickens that you can get through this trauma.
Sincerely

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#11435 - 10/21/03 11:23 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
CJR Offline
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8490
Loc: Montana
With the several puncture wounds my birds have had, Amoxycillin was prescribed by the Vet, orally,for a week. Best of luck with your dears, and hope for a good outcome! CJR

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#11436 - 10/21/03 11:43 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thanks for the replies and support. 430 in the morning here and I haven't had much sleep. Nuku is still breathing but they're shallow breaths. She looks dehydrated b/c her comb looks like a deflated balloon, hanging limp to one side instead of its usual fullness. The gauze absorbed a lot of fluid, but not much blood. I'm thinking it's plasma or the swelling fluid and she needs oral rehydration. She's been sleeping, or so it seems, since 11 last night when we gave her another 5 ccs of amoxycillin. I'm torn between giving her more liquids b/c she gagged last night and coughed up some bloody phlegm, so I don't want to choke her. But I know she needs liquids so I'm gonna force some down in small amounts.

Humu looks like she will recover. She is standing on her own and looks alert, and at the same time dazed. She seems to know I'm helping her. I've looked more closely at her wounds and it looks like the dog chewed off her oil gland and she's missing patches of skin around the base of her tail along her back. No other wounds apparent.

I'll try adding yogurt to the oral antibiotic Gatorade mix for both hens.

I have to go to another island for work today, buy maybe Dianne can monitor this thread for suggestions today. Continued thanks to everyone.

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#11437 - 10/21/03 12:17 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hi Again Buk Buk

I have read that too much salt is really bad for chickens, maybe some one could comment. Also you can insert a tube for feeding/ hydration into the crop, or at least past the point where she could aspirate liquids and food. Here are some relevant limks from big fat henny

http://members.madasafish.com/~fabket/fowlnotfoul/1staid.htm

http://home.att.net/~kimbro/impacted_crop.htm

Good luck
Sandy and the Giggle Chix

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#11438 - 10/21/03 01:33 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hi Gigglechix,

Thanks for the links. I'm not quite sure where I can get a feeding tube made like that, but I'll look. In the meantime Nuku has opened her eyes a few times this morning and shifted her weight around, so that's promising. I'll give her some yogurt in a little while and will try cutting back on the Gatorade in favor of water.

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#11439 - 10/21/03 02:24 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hi Buk Buk

I improvised. The tubing comes from the hardware store, I used a large syringe I got at the vets and didnt even use tubing. The syringe has a bigger capacity and a longer and hooked plastic tip rather a needle, it worked fine or you could force the tubong onto the end and have the whole set improvised that way. Or pet stores have feeding syringes that might work. Alternatively try to improvise from the kitchen, tool box, or garage. What about a cake decorator?

hope this helps
Sandy and the Giggle Chix

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#11440 - 10/21/03 04:14 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Bill Ludwig Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 2582
Loc: Ohio
It sounds like your doing a good job so far. What little advice I had, the others have already given or you have already done so all I can add is Best wishes and good luck!

Bill

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#11441 - 10/21/03 06:14 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


I'm sorry to say that Nuku passed away this morning.

It still looks like physically Humu will make it, but I think she misses her flock already. She is acting like herself but a bit more subdued in character and seems fairly unaware that her back end is half missing. She is still walking around and eating and let me put more antibiotic ointment on her wounds. It has been a very distressing time for us, but the support of other chicken fanciers helps so much. We will keep you updated on her recovery.

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#11442 - 10/21/03 08:58 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Ratbird Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 05/18/03
Posts: 324
Loc: California
I am so sorry Bukbuk. I feel so much for all of you.

What happened to the dogs? Did Dianne see them? Can they be tracked?

Just horrible.

It's a really tough thing to choose to let them free range or keep them in the coop 24 by 7.

How is Humu doing now?

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#11443 - 10/22/03 04:15 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Humu is doing well. She's eating, drinking, pooping and really against taking her antibiotics! All seem like good signs to me.

We have just been guessing on what dose of Amoxicillin she needs - does anyone know how much a 4 pound hen with a wound about 4 by 5 inches should get? We've been giving her about 50 mg roughly 3x a day. Is that enough? Is it too much?

Also, should we be cleaning the wound area? It doesn't look like any muscle was exposed - it really just looks like chicken fat from a grocery store chicken, only no skin covering it... We initially cleaned it with hydrogen peroxide, a saline rinse, an antibiotic rinse, and have been keeping it covered with Neosporin, but haven't cleaned it again since right after the attack (36 hours ago).

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Bukbuk's wife (and Humu's mom)

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#11444 - 10/22/03 05:08 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Bukbuk,

I am so sorry about your birds. My deepest sympathies.
As far as cleaning Humu's wounds, unles you are seeing a lot of pus or other signs of infection, I would leave it alone. Keep up with the neosporin but stay away from the hydrogen peroxide. It can actually do more harm than good at this stage. For initial cleaning of a wound it is fine to use. But, as healing takes place, the peroxide can harm or destroy the new cell growth in the wound increasing the risk of infection. There will probably be a lot of fluid still draining from the wounds. This is good as this fluid has a number of bacteriostatic(inhibits bacteria from growing) properties. If pus does start to form, try moist heat. A mild epsom salt solution in very warm but not hot water will help draw out all that nasty stuff. It sounds like she is doing well and you and the Mrs. did everything right. Best of luck and I will keep my fingers crossed for you- Cedewynne

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#11445 - 10/22/03 06:55 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Susie Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 1902
Loc: Arkansas
Bukbuk,

First of all, I'm very sorry you are having to deal with this. I know it's upsetting and you are doing your very best to try to help Humu. I know it is difficult to find information on dosages of meds for poultry. I tried to find some info for you. Take it with a grain of salt as I have no solid resources, just website citations.

I'm getting some conflicting information but if I was in your shoes, I'd go with the higher dose recommendations unless your bird starts showing signs of diarrhea. We don't want the side-effect to be worse than the cure. It sounds like she is doing well so supporting her with some antibiotics is more of a preventive issue at this point -- and an important one. I just wouldn't want to overdo and have something like diarrhea jeopardize her healing.

I am finding information that says 50-100 mg. per day. Then another site says up to 175 mg. PER kg. of body weight. If a kg is 2.2 lbs....do you know how much your bird weighs, approximately?

Here are the two sites where I found this info, for oral amoxcillin.

http://groups.msn.com/CHICKENCHRONICLES/yourwebpage6.msnw

http://zcog.org/zcog%20frames/Avian%20Drugs/Avian%20Drugs.htm

I hope that helps! I think I would be doing a higher dose right now and then cut back (plus add yogurt if she likes it) if you notice a diarrhea problem starting. If the yogurt is difficult to get down her, I'm sure you could buy some acidophilus capsules and break them open on her food and get some good bacteria in her that way.

Good luck to you! I hope everything works out for Humu. It sounds good right now. I've had dog attacks on occasion myself and have experienced both good results and bad. Sometimes there are internal injuries that you cannot see. However, a bird acting like your Humu feels like a good prognosis to me.

Susie

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#11446 - 10/22/03 03:51 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Glad to report that Humu is looking even better this morning. Some of her wounds have started to scab over. Yesterday they were producing a lot of fluids, I think the bacteriostatic kind that Cedewyne mentioned. Dianne has been applying the Neosporin once a day. Last night Humu really fought to avoid the oral antibiotic but Dianne managed to control her long enough to squirt it into her mouth. This morning we didn't want to force it down again so we took her favorite food, grapes, and excised the middles with a straw, put the antibiotic in the holes and fed the grapes to her. She gobbled them up heartily. I guess these are good signs that Humu has strength. All the other chickens who died had severe neck wounds, and Humu was the only one who wasn't bitten in that area. She's eating like she always does -- a lot. And pooping some normal poops. One this morning was a bit chocolaty but she's had some normal ones since then. No diarrhea so far. She was cackling up a storm yesterday evening and looking around, which I interpreted as trying to call her flock. She was alpha hen before and I guess she misses her sisters. We put her closer to her 8 week old daughter and nieces, who are spitting images of their moms. Hopefully in a few weeks the little ones will work themselves in as Humu's new flock. Life goes on.

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#11447 - 10/22/03 03:53 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Oh, and thank you, Susie for the links and info about dosages. Will try the suggestions.

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#11448 - 10/22/03 05:30 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Spotted Crow Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/24/03
Posts: 855
Loc: Massachusetts
Goddess, BukBuk, I'm sorry for your loss. But at least Humu seems to be doing well. She's probably sort of in shock and she will miss her friends. Alot of TLC and treats will not hurt. Did Dianne recognize the dogs? If you know whose they are, you could try and get some compensation from the owners. Or at least have them admit to the dirty deed.
Good luck and hugs and kisses to Humu from the Fuzzy Buddys. Jerry's been through losing his sister and he's done fine. Good luck.

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#11449 - 10/22/03 05:37 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Few people who haven't raised chickens understand the tranquility and enjoyment those of us who do raise chickens experience. When I mentioned the attack to some coworkers, they reacted with indifference for the most part. Thank you all on this board for your support during the crisis and aftermath. As Sandy mentioned in her posts about the Giggle Chix, you are all Damn Good People.

Yesterday I buried Jack and Jill, Nuku, and Apu in the banana grove across from our front door. Last year during Typhoon Pongsona all of the banana trees in the grove fell over but within a few weeks shoots sprang up from the bases of the fallen trees. Almost a year later the trees are thirty feet high, denser and healthier than what I remember. Every morning when Dianne and I leave home for work, we'll see the banana grove and what it represents, and we'll have inspiration to start the day.

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#11450 - 10/22/03 07:11 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Cody Offline
Feather

Registered: 05/18/03
Posts: 32
Loc: Arkansas
Sorry to hear about the attack. frown

It sound as though the hen is doing fine. Hope she lays you lots of eggs. One question that I have is, what are you gonna do with the dogs? Are they your neighbors or just a pack of strays. We have a pack of strays and a few of the neighborhood dogs decide to run with them every now and then. I watched one of them try to attack a flock of sheep accrosed the road from me, he did not see the gaurd dogs that were under a wagon to the right. The biggest one of them came flying out from under his hiding place and rolled the attacker. He was chewing the butt off of that dog all the way back to the other dogs house. The other dog got a torn ear for the encounter. That gaurdog is a mean looking critter. I just thought that I would share a story about a dog that got what was comming to him. laugh
I don't know if you are like me, but I really get mad when anything screws with my hens. mad There was a opossum that killed one of my hens in a seperate pen from the rest of my flock. I set 3 steel jaw traps and caught that son of a gun in 2 of them. Hope you give those dogs what is comming to them. good luck.
smile
cogburn

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#11451 - 10/22/03 09:28 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Neither of us recognized the dogs. Dianne says she won't forget the dog that was chewing on Humu and that she whacked with the broom handle. Right after the attack we tracked down the four dogs to the next door neighbor's compound. I had never seen the dogs there before but that's where they retreated after I chased one down and hit it with a steel rod. I'm with you, Cogburn, that the dogs have it coming to them. My landlord, who lives downstairs, said he would "take care of them" next time he sees them. He keeps chickens too and when another neighbor's dogs killed some of his chickens the dogs disappeared one day. I pressed him on this and he said that he poisoned the dogs. Although I couldn't do this myself, I won't stop my landlord from doing it. And the four dogs in this pack killed one of his chickens so they just might disappear in the next few days, too.

The ironic thing is that I like dogs and Dianne and I were looking at puppies the other day to protect the flock when they get older. But the dogs that attacked our chickens are boonie dogs that are vicious looking and acting, and I have no problem whacking one with a machete if it comes on the property again.

Humu, Nuku and Apu gave us lots of eggs. On the day Apu died she laid an egg in her relatively new nesting location, a folding picnic chair with a concave canvas seat that is on our front porch. I guess she thought that was a safer place than the coop, which can get muddy and dirty in the heavy rains we have here. Yesterday I put that egg in the incubator. I won't know if it's fertile for another week. There's a small chance because my landlord's RIR rooster occasionally escapes from his pen and always seems to find the hens soon afterwards. I had some of Humu's and Nuku's eggs in the fridge--they were a few days in there--and put those in the incubator too, but those eggs have an even slimmer chance of being fertile and hatching. I'll report back in a few days if they're fertile.

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#11452 - 10/23/03 03:47 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Spotted Crow Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/24/03
Posts: 855
Loc: Massachusetts
There was a story on the news this morning. A dog was found dead from a shotgun wound to the heart in front of his house. I was almost feeling sorry for it, until they aired the rest of the story. It had killed a neighbour's chickens recently. That doesn't excuse shooting the dog, but...

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#11453 - 10/23/03 04:43 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


I feel sorry for the dog, too. Not because of what it did or how it was destroyed but because it was the victim of an irresponsible owner who allowed the dog to run unsupervised. It sounds like everyone lost in that story.- Cedewynne

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#11454 - 10/23/03 05:48 AM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


I couldn't agree more Cedewynne, and I also think the mother cat who died in the other "attacking dog" thread was a victim of this too. I have been watching all the confrontations that have been going on and my heart breaks for those of you who have lost pets, and those of you who have had near misses. I read the board every day, though i don't post much because i am still a novice at chicken keeping, and learn more every day. My "girls" will always be pets, with names, so I guess that makes me an eternal beginner. :p
That being said, I am disturbed by the anger that I see on the boards at times. I can understand the first post, where you are emotional after an incident, but to continue namecalling, talking of revenge......negative emotions never reap anything good. If you counteract the violence with more violence (even verbal) then you are perpetuating the cycle. Fix what needs to be fixed, get the law involved, even in some cases there is no choice but to kill the hostile animal. But, never forget that all sides of this are tragic.
Be it the animal who was raised to be so vicious/psycho, or the owner who is such a dark, negative person (what a sad way to live) who would raise an animal like this or you, who have lost an animal or had one injured, tragedy brought on you through no fault of your own. There are no winners, so the best that can be made of the situation is to try and fix it and move on. laugh

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#11455 - 10/23/03 02:43 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Your hen should not need more than 250 mg a DAY, divided by 3 doses a day. Becareful you dont overdose her. I have never used liquid, just capsules.

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#11456 - 10/23/03 03:15 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thanks, Briggadane. Will reduce dosage. Her wounds have entirely scabbed over now and she looks and acts the way she usually does. I gave her some yogurt about an hour after her first dose of amoxycillin today. Her appetite is hearty and she keeps peeking over the Rubbermaid bin to check out her daughter and nieces.

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#11457 - 10/23/03 03:24 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Spotted Crow Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/24/03
Posts: 855
Loc: Massachusetts
The dog officer also told me something interesting. When you get your chicken license, you have to say whether its a pet or food. If it's food and a dog gets in, you can be reimbursed for the value of the chicken, but not if it's a pet. Doesn't make much sense does it.

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#11458 - 10/23/03 06:40 PM Re: help: dog attack and home surgery
Michele Burns Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 08/22/03
Posts: 261
Loc: Ohio
<> I see I am not the only one with "neighbors dog" troubles. I think had my neighbors dogs killed my hens, it would have disappeared too. I can't imagine people having dogs that they know are "killers" and not doing anything about it. Bukbuk, I feel your pain. If you read my post "Score 1 for the Hens," you will see what I have been going through and it's horrendous. I am with you... frown
_________________________
Michele Burns

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