I came home from a concert on Wednesday night to find out that my chickens had been attacked by a pair of escaped Staffies. The neighbours were home and heard a noise but weren't able to easily break up the dogs or get them away from the chickens. Piecing the story together here's how each of the chickens fared in the foray.
Fortunately the cluck monster had re-emerged earlier in the week and thus she managed to remain undetected in her lair, brooding away in a dark corner. Hetty employed her camouflage brown feathers and hid under a miniature copse at the back of the pen. Gonzo must have had her whits about her. She's white so wouldn't have avoided detection by the dogs but must have been fast enough to outrun and out-manoeuvre if not the dogs, then at least her sister Wheelie.
Wheelie wore the worst of the attack. This was her third experience in the jaws of a dog and she has survived the previous two relatively unscathed. Her dodgy eye leaves her vulnerable and unable to judge distance and perceive predators sufficiently. She has suffered badly with one deep puncture wound on her back and another shallower one on the other side. Next to the large gouge is an area that has been ripped open down to the muscle and fat.
|Wheelie with a comfrey poultice on the first night|
I prepared myself for the worst and left her in a basket inside overnight to keep her warm and safe, waiting to see how she was travelling in the morning. Surprisingly she's now lasted two nights since the attack although her breathing remains fairly laboured. She seems to be improving and more alert each day and we have been syringe feeding her water with poultry multivitamins. This afternoon I cleaned out her wound and was surprised to find how deep it was. There was a fair amount of gunk in there (but no pus) so hopefully she will continue to improve now that it's been cleaned properly. I've made her up some bran porridge for tomorrow morning and put her in the basket in the cage with the other chickens tonight for some company.
|Wheelie's wound. There's a cotton ball covering the large puncture wound|