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#1 2013-01-23 01:35:41

riverbendfarm
Member
From: Baker Settlement, Nova Scotia
Registered: 2012-05-01
Posts: 214
Website

Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Ok so Ham continued to get more and more lame with each day, then today I see 'Niller limping as well and so I did some online sleuthing and ran across a description of Bumblefoot, which is an infection chickens sometimes get in their feet. It often has a telltale black scab that appears on the bottom of their feet. If left untreated it can progress and eventually become fatal. Well I figured I'd look over Ham's feet so I had a peek and yup, there was the little black scab.

So I freaked out. Then I got serious. I drove into town and bought a Pharmacy of medicine, first aid supplies and surgery stuff. I was having it out with this problem for once and all. I think my chicken first aid cupboard is now well-stocked. With Dettol, gauze, steri-strips, disposable scalpels and Antibiotic ointments I set to work on my Bumblefoot surgery. After soaking the feet in Epsom salts and scrubbing them clean, I wrapped poor Hammy in a towel and had Linda hold him tight. I then used the sterile scalpel and tweezers to cut around the scab and pull it off, squeezing and removing any infection that I found under it. This took a little while and he was not sedated so I felt every cut myself. I'm not certain that we got it all out, but I am hopeful that we did.

I then packed Polysporin Antibiotic Ointment into the open wound all the way inside, and smeared it over the entire foot. I wrapped it all in a bandage of sterile gauze and tied it off. I will check it in a few days to hopefully see it healing well. His limp was so bad that I was desperate enough to try surgery rather than lose our boy. In the pictures you can see he is still recovering from comb trauma. He will stay inside for a few weeks, and I'll clean up after him. I can't put him back outside until he is well and truly healed.

I will be contacting a vet that works with poultry but he lives an hour and a half away. Perhaps he can give me an antibiotic prescription to help combat this. I'll be scrubbing perches with Dettol and a brush and cleaning the coop very well. Tomorrow I have to check on 'Niller and I'm dreading finding the same infection on his foot as well. He was limping today and nesting in the hay in a nest box...bad sign...plus his foot pad was swollen and tender to the touch.

Here are the pics that tell the story: :sick:

Medical Supplies;
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2317_zps12c6ff31.jpg

Comb Trauma:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2318_zps4d75b1cc.jpg

Telltale Scab:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2320_zpsfa139a83.jpg

Favoring the Left Leg:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2321_zps23e34780.jpg

Washing the Feet:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2322_zps4155e38a.jpg

Making the Incision:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2324_zps7ffe7f5c.jpg

Digging out the Infection:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2323_zpsfa7f9a50.jpg

Bandaged Owwie:
http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj587/riverbendfarmss/IMG_2325_zps2671807c.jpg

Last edited by riverbendfarm (2013-01-23 01:38:43)


No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.
~Heraclitus

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2013-01-23 01:35:41

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#2 2013-01-23 02:07:57

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Well done on the bandaging! Make sure it keeps dry. Bumblefoot is a staph infection. It encapsulates itself so systemic meds often don't affect it. Packing it with polysporin after opening the wound ( because its anaerobic) may help. Penicillin G is what I used on a bird that I had with it. You unfortunately have to use a fairly big needle as penG is very thick. Inject it into the foot pad and keep it bandaged with polysporin, changing the dressing every two days. Worked for my girl. The unfortunate thing is that it is very contagious so you may see others with it. It can also cause a skin infection in you called impetigo, so best wear gloves while treating him.

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#3 2013-01-23 02:12:05

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Looking at your pics again, that is certainly a very small scab, so you may have caught it early. It often looks like a perfect circle right in the middle of the foot pad. It can be pulled ( not easily or painlessly with a pair of needle nosed pliers as well). Yours doesn't look like it could have been. A little lidocaine ( think baby teething gel) can also help with pain while you are working on it.

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#4 2013-01-23 02:15:29

poplar girl
Administrator
From: Athabasca, AB, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-30
Posts: 3159

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

:shock: oh my. I sure hope none of mine get bumble foot and I most decidedly don't want impetigo :nervous: if however any of my chooks do start to limp I will most definately reference this post for some assistance.

Your poor boy looks like he's had a rough go of things this winter and I hope he makes a full recovery riverbendfarm


Raising red cuckoo (marraduna) Euskal Oiloak and self blue (lavender) & black Belgian Bearded d'Uccles.

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#5 2013-01-23 02:45:29

yardbirds
Member
From: just north of Yorkton, Sk.
Registered: 2012-07-09
Posts: 334

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Poor Roo.....thankfully you have the courage and the know how to deal with such unfortunate circumstances.  Hope he makes a full recovery and none of the rest of your flock has been afflicted.  Good Job and Good Luck.  :thumbsup:

Last edited by yardbirds (2013-01-23 02:46:25)


urban flock consisting two EOs thx Prairie Chick, one True Blue Ameraucana, and two Welsummers, thx Dan Smith and a gorgeous Easter Egger Hen, thx Flicker Chick. and 2 GLW pullets, 1 GLW cockerel, 1 SLW cockerel, 1 true blue Ameraucana pullet, and 4 EE pullets and 1 Cream Brabanter pullet, Thx to FRF, Anneke, and Fallyn.

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#6 2013-01-23 02:51:24

riverbendfarm
Member
From: Baker Settlement, Nova Scotia
Registered: 2012-05-01
Posts: 214
Website

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Where would I get Penicillin G and how much does it cost? I'm already out 65$ for all my supplies and DW is giving me that look...I'm not sure how else to treat if Niller has no scab. Just the Penicillin? I used Dettol all over my hands so did the others who helped me.


No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.
~Heraclitus

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#7 2013-01-23 03:01:38

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Pen G is easy to get at the feed store, but what you have done may be enough. Keep it open while it heals and keep up with the polysporin and bandaging. It may be enough. You did a great job! You may have caught it early enough.

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#8 2013-01-23 12:51:59

Flat Rock Farm
Member
From: Branchton, Ontario Canada
Registered: 2011-07-03
Posts: 3359

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Bumblefoot is nasty I had some of my commercial Leghorns a couple years ago have it. :sick:  I purchased them at POL and I think they came with it as I have never had a problem before and I know it happens quite frequently with cage kept birds, which they were.  It was so bad with pus and that cottage cheese like stuff that I had to extract out of it :sick: :sick:  Took me about a month to clear it up.  I spend more in meds that I paid for the birds :duh:

Hope you got it in time and it will heal quickly.  By the way his poor comb looks so sore :(

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#9 2013-01-24 03:08:37

riverbendfarm
Member
From: Baker Settlement, Nova Scotia
Registered: 2012-05-01
Posts: 214
Website

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

UPDATE:

Ham is recovering nicely and still limping. We replaced his dressing tonight and the redness seems to be fading, healing up nicely at the scab site. We re-slathered it with Polysporin and wrapped it with clean bandages. We will check it again in a couple of days.

Bad news for 'Niller. He had a HUGE scab on his foot, so we had evening #2 of chicken surgery. This one was a bit bloodier and more extensive, and we washed, disinfected and wrapped both of his feet for good measure. Tomorrow I am checking the girls and giving them the foot spa minus the cutting unless scabs are present. I am moving the flock to my garage IMMEDIATELY tomorrow after the full disinfectant foot spa treatment. New perches, squeaky clean litter, the works. Their coop is going to be cleaned, scrubbed with ammonia and all perches are being burned. They won't be back in it until the summer. I'm not taking any chances. I am also worried that it may persist despite this in their yard, so will probably not run any birds there for some time. I have declared WAR! :gunslinger:


No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.
~Heraclitus

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#10 2013-01-24 04:40:48

skeffling lavender farm
Administrator
From: Wiarton, ON, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-17
Posts: 2720
Website

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Oh dear, I hope you get them all sorted.  :thumbs:  It's very wise to be sure, and err on the side of caution.  Hope everyone is OK and the dudes come around fast.  So hard when their feet get so poopey so easily. I stickied this as it is a good reference.  Keep us posted on the chooks and your plans.

A vet told us for fowl pox (viral) sprinkling lime and keeping the grass cut short so the UV/sun can get  to the ground will help get rid of the viral plaques (that can last for years).  Maybe you can find some similar fix for the bacterial problem and google times for keeping the housing empty so it can die off with no host.  There are often scientific papers online with lots of specific info.  =D

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#11 2013-01-24 13:54:20

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Cleaning the coop and replacing the roosts is a good idea. You could also try lowering them as jumping off of high roosts can cause bruising or small wounds and therefore a point of entry for the bacteria. I really wouldn't worry about the yard though. First, Staph aureus will not live through the winter on the ground. Second, if you have chickens, you have Staph. It will always be there. It just causes problems during times of stress. You could offer your flock yogurt a few times a week to add "good" bacteria to compete with the staph. If you think there is a problem in your whole flock right now ( and there could be,especially with moving them) you can treat them with penicillin for a week to avoid letting it get hold in anyone else. Make sure their bedding is soft (think peat-also good because it is acidic and bacteria don't like that) and dry.
You are doing a great job, and your birds will be fine. Well done!

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#12 2013-01-25 00:23:51

riverbendfarm
Member
From: Baker Settlement, Nova Scotia
Registered: 2012-05-01
Posts: 214
Website

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Update #2:
Today I called an avian Vet in the next town and he got me a prescription for long term antibiotics. 2 shots of 0.5 cc penicillin a week apart for each birdie. Total cost $22.00 including syringes. I got the girls out of the coop today and brought them in with the boys (this place is getting ridiculously like the funny farm). I gave all 5 birds plus one extra cockerel a bath and rinse, followed by a fluff dry in front of the wood stove with the fan on. I reapplied polysporin to their feet, re-bandaged and injected the first Penicillin shots to the roosters. I think I only got it in the muscle on one, and under the skin on the other. Ahh well, it shall have to suffice. Sprayed them again for lice/mites and found the little white clusters at the base of their feathers. Hopefully I can get on top of that as well with the new location. Using Zodiak spray again, as it seemed to make some difference. I'll be adding DE baths to the new coop as well.

Managed to stab myself with one syringe...so damn tired now...what a week. During all of this we have had the coldest snap of the year. Its -27 degrees Celsius with wind chill tonight, and has been close to that all week. We have been thawing and re-filling waterers twice a day and yesterday I collected an egg that had frozen and cracked right down the middle :shock: Birds staying inside until they are bone dry then this weekend we get them to the new location. I'll be making shorter perches out of rounded off flat 2x4's and laying a thick bedding down.

When you are giving your chickens a bath in buckets in your tub its a sure sign that you are :Crazy:


No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.
~Heraclitus

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#13 2013-01-25 00:39:50

Susan
Administrator
From: Saskatoon, Sask, Canada
Registered: 2011-06-28
Posts: 2540

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

No it's a sure sign you rock! You're a great chicken daddy! (And I'm glad you aren't allergic to penicillin!) :cheer:

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#14 2013-01-25 01:07:43

Island Girl
Member
From: Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Isla
Registered: 2011-07-06
Posts: 1403

Re: Bumblefoot Surgery (Pic Heavy)

Lol, yup a good chicken daddy for sure. Good job rbf!

XOX Monika

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