bumblefoot

Lucretia, my free flying spunky little leghorn, developed something called bumble foot - 
most likely due to her high jumps off the tall fence every day. 
It is an infection chickens can get from small cuts in their feet. It swells up and develops an infection which gets hard and turns into a type of kernel. 
When infected, a staph infection, it can lead to death in the bird. 
I could not let that happen to my girl.
So I read up a lot about in on the web and we decided to try the surgery ourselves. 
We set up surgery outside in the gorgeous sun for the best light we could get. 
(I wonder what the neighbors were thinking about our set up when they were driving  by.....)
Soaking the her feet to get them soft was the first step. 
Holding a Chicken in warm epson salt water for 15 minutes is more exhausting that I thought, as you know from my post about Lucretia how freedom loving this gal is. 
Then we wrapped her in a towel and Robert gently scraped, cut and pulled the infectious core out of her feet while I held her and the feet still. 
I was surprised how calm she was during it all. She barely moved during the first foot surgery, and got a little twitchy on the obviously more infected one. But overall she did great. 
The whole procedure took a good amount of time, and it was more emotionally taxing than it was technically difficult. I think we got it all out, bandaged her up and now she is segregated from the others in a little dog carrier. Which also breaks my heart. But until she is mostly healed and the swelling in her one foot has gone down, I need to keep her separate from the others, clean her bandages ever day and pray she makes a full recovery.

As I know how sensitive some of you in the audience are to gore, I did not take any pictures and won't post any of the surgery.