Limping chicken - scaly leg?

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Steve_789

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Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« on: February 25, 2020, 20:44 »
Howdy all,

so noticed one of my girls limping this morning and not putting any weight on her foot, catching her was fun, our chickens really arnt used to getting handled, even limping she wasn't having it! finally managed it though with help and a few things immediately caught my eye

First thing was how "solid" her legs felt, they more like dry bone than scales and just look wrong. whilst googling chicken feet nastys i noticed the photos of scaly leg looked pretty similar, it is that?

Secondly, the tag (which was on her prior to me looking after em), i think its cut into her leg, it certainly doesn't move if you try and move it, although the chicken does  :(

Other than her legs, she seems fine, i watched her for a while and she was eating, drinking and hanging with the other chickens, albeit on the fringes.

thinking i may have to lay the law down with these chickens and have them get used to me picking them up, whether they like it or not!  :ohmy:
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Wellington

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2020, 21:17 »
Ive no experience with scaly leg, but I have chased a lot of chickens, and in my experience they are either happy being handled, or not. They do get used to treats really quickly, which can make getting them into a confined space easier (they will generally follow you anywhere for live mealworms) but it doesnt make them any happier to be picked up.

Good luck with the leg. One of mine develops a limp for day or two every so often, which then disappear after a day or two.  No sign of anything wrong, so Ive just put it down being a contrary chicken.  Good luck with the leg.

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2020, 10:51 »
Oh that is not so good  :(  That leg ring is causing damage (and probably pain) so I think she needs either a vet to get that off safely, or you have to make a decision about whether culling her is kinder.

It may have permanently damaged the leg, but there is no way of knowing until it is removed.  The swelling may go down, but it depends if the underlying structure of the leg has been changed in any way.  If she has scaly leg as well, that can be treated, but it is not the main issue right now.

If any of the others have rings like this, I'd get hold of them and take them off if you can.  You can buy nets to catch them, but a large fishing net will also work.  They don't like it, but it is less stress than chasing them round for ages  :)

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Steve_789

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2020, 17:13 »
yea a few others have rings on as well  :mellow:

i'm not sure we have any vets in our area that do chickens, its mostly just your cat and dog stuff only. I'm confident we could take it off ourselves, but the thing holding me back is whats underneath, were not set up for chicken first aid!

It'd be a shame to cull it, i was watching it again today and its perfectly fine otherwise :(

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2020, 17:51 »
Chicken first aid is pretty basic Steve.  I reckon you could take it in your stride.  Get yourself some purple spray like this for starters.

https://www.omlet.co.uk/shop/chicken_keeping/anti_pek_and_healing/2768/lincoln_purple_spray_-_250ml/

This cleans the wound and covers any red bits that the other hens will peck.  It is also useful to have some cornflour around as this is great for stopping bleeding and allowing the bird to heal.  Get the ring off her leg in the morning so she has all day while you can watch her.  It would be useful to have a quiet safe place for sick chickens as well.   This can be a dog crate set up somewhere cool, not to brightly lit and of course out of danger from predators.  You need a couple of small bowls for food and water.

Not to be morbid, but it is worth researching how to humanely dispatch a chicken just in case.  They mask illness and injury as long as they can, so hanging around on the sidelines may also be part of it.  Chickens can be quite cruel to any weak links in the flock and try and drive them off.  That leg is swollen with fluid that is trapped in the foot by the leg ring.  It has got to hurt, so whatever the consequences, please don't leave her like that.  They are remarkable at how well they heal at times, so she may well bounce back and be fine. 


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grinling

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2020, 17:58 »
she might have landed hard and hence the limp. Getting the tags off would be best.you could look for exotic vets, but any vet should be able to remove the tag.
You can get stuff from the vet for scaly leg or use vaseline daily for 3 weeks, or same stuff for crabs for humans.
hold her by her feet, they hang still, and see if the ring moves , it might be possible to remove by cutting it
have purple spray  just in case it bleeds.

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Steve_789

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2020, 20:30 »
Chicken first aid is pretty basic Steve.  I reckon you could take it in your stride.  Get yourself some purple spray like this for starters.

https://www.omlet.co.uk/shop/chicken_keeping/anti_pek_and_healing/2768/lincoln_purple_spray_-_250ml/

This cleans the wound and covers any red bits that the other hens will peck.  It is also useful to have some cornflour around as this is great for stopping bleeding and allowing the bird to heal.  Get the ring off her leg in the morning so she has all day while you can watch her.  It would be useful to have a quiet safe place for sick chickens as well.   This can be a dog crate set up somewhere cool, not to brightly lit and of course out of danger from predators.  You need a couple of small bowls for food and water.

i didnt know they made stuff for birds, we do have that blue antiseptic spray they use on sheep though for some reason, possible the staff member i mentioned in my other post used it on em .. no idea, i'll have to check.

Not to be morbid, but it is worth researching how to humanely dispatch a chicken just in case.  They mask illness and injury as long as they can, so hanging around on the sidelines may also be part of it.  Chickens can be quite cruel to any weak links in the flock and try and drive them off.  That leg is swollen with fluid that is trapped in the foot by the leg ring.  It has got to hurt, so whatever the consequences, please don't leave her like that.  They are remarkable at how well they heal at times, so she may well bounce back and be fine.

I have been  :( I'm not overly against doing it, i'd just rather not if its avoidable. I was kinda hoping it was just scaly leg and treating that like grinling says would reduce the swelling and what not.

Quote from: grinling
and see if the ring moves , it might be possible to remove by cutting it

I tried moving it when we picked her up to see how loose it was, it was stuck fast with no wiggle whatsoever, i think the only way to get it off would be saw it off very carefully with a tiny hacksaw or seeing if there's a clip or something.

I'll have a chat with the manager tomorrow morning about it. One way or another it'll be sorted by friday  :mellow:
« Last Edit: February 26, 2020, 20:31 by Steve_789 »

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2020, 20:59 »
I was kinda hoping it was just scaly leg and treating that like grinling says would reduce the swelling and what not.

If it is scaly leg, it would in time, but it would take too long and she might end up with infections in that foot before then.  Have a go and give her a chance.  Grinling is right about most vets being able to help, even if they are not chicken specialists.  If you can get that leg ring off, that should get the worst of the swelling down.  Once her leg is healed up as far as it can by doing that, you can see if anything else is  wrong and move on to any other treatment she needs.

At least now you know she has access to plenty of good food and a clean, dry coop to roost in, so the healing process will be that much easier for her.  If you had not stepped in, she would be in a lot worse state and no-one would be coming to her rescue.

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grinling

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2020, 16:19 »
trip to the vet would have her checked out if other issues with leg. Legs can thicken with scaly leg,the scales should be changed when moulting, but does not always happen.
If you feel brave with 2 other people,then get the chicken,cover her head,lie her down, 2nd person holds one leg whilst the brave one,hold leg with ring and with scalpel or stanley knife, gently cut into top of ring,not all the way,and try to remove, scales will probably come away.
chat to hen throughout.
Remove all rings from birds.

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Steve_789

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2020, 18:15 »
well, manager was a bit reluctant to get a vet in before we'd tried ourselves and good news, we got the ring of! Did it a bit like ginling suggested, although i used one of our tiny fine bladed hacksaws, was going to use a stanley knife but using the hacksaw was easier and safe for both chicken and humans! Under the clip looked fine, no redness, cuts, indents etc, she even let me touch it without any complaint. We did bout 7:30am so she was still a little sleepy which helped, by the end of the day she was putting weight on the leg and limping a lot less, so were holding off culling and giving her a chance and are going to be keeping a close eye on her, if she shows no improvement by monday we'll prolly cull, but after seeing her i'm hopeful we wont have to, but we'll see. I think we caught it time, just.

2 more chickens have tags on .. which we'll be getting off next week, hopefully that'll go smoother as they look a little loose still, but there coming off all the same!

I also might do scaly leg treatment on em just to be sure as well, after having a good long look at all their legs the older hens in particular have very white scabby looking legs.

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2020, 19:48 »
Well done Steve  :D  I would give her a couple of weeks before you make any decisions, but it sounds very promising and I think you did get to it in time.

Scaly leg does spread, so treat them all and get the leg rings off the other couple that have them.  That will be another job well done  :)

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Steve_789

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2020, 20:58 »
yup! also gotten 82 eggs since the 10th of Feb (been recording!), so doing something right :)

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grinling

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2020, 20:59 »
so glad that it has worked, now to treat the chicken legs.
you need  to be able to pick up each hen, cockerel needs to be dealt with first as it should be dominant
I presume you have a new house with a pop hole, using an animal crate in front of the hole,get a chicken  in it and check over. If possible to get into the house, then get 1 at a time.
vasaline is messy, but you can buy stuff for pubic lice (related) from a chemist, you cannot say it is for chickens. I know a lady who did this. wear gloves.
after doing each chicken,shake a pot with treats in and throw some to it.

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Steve_789

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2020, 07:21 »
well, been ill so a delayed response to this!

Good news is that the limping chicken is no longer limping at all and is walking around perfectly happy again  :D

re scaly leg, i see that Net-Tex has a spray which seems to be well liked by people, and a cleaner alternative than rubbing vaseline! Catching will still be a pain though, a net or large sack might be in order as no one is around (or willing to be around!) either at sunrise or sunset to catch em whilst their in the coop!

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Re: Limping chicken - scaly leg?
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2020, 09:42 »
Glad you are feeling better now Steve.

Great news about the limping bird.  It sounds like it was just the tight leg band and now that has been removed, she is healthy and happy again.

The chickens will be scared by the net, so it might be worth trying to contain them somewhere before you start trying to catch them all. 



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