April 9, 2020 – Bumble Foot

It’s chicken day! I want to share a case that I recently treated because it is fairly common in backyard flocks.

This is a family pet that suddenly had a swollen foot. The owners properly separated her from the rest of the flock because chickens will cannibalize any bird with a wound.

They called me to some see her.

She has a classic case of “bumble foot”.

Bumble foot is the common name for a bacterial infection in a chicken’s foot. There are a few different types of bacteria that can cause the infection.

This condition is most commonly caused by a sharp object in the chicken pen. Wire, tin, metal, or other sharp item that the chicken may walk or roost on.

I began by cleaning the foot well with iodine solution. I did also use a little bit of topical anesthetic to prevent pain to the hen.

You can soak these in warm water with Epsom salts to soften the skin. This foot was already open in areas, and the one area that wasn’t open was steady soft.

The goal is to remove the infection. The hard black areas were scraped out.

The soft abscess on top of the foot was lanced to allow drainage and flushing.

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