Bumble foot, or Ulcerative pododermatitis,
is a painful ulceration and infection of the footpad. It often
appears when ducks or geese are maintained on hard and/or poorly
sanitized surfaces. Pressure points on their foot pads, and
sometimes on their toe joints, become calloused. Fluids build up
between the callous and the underlying tissue. Friction from
walking increases inflammation and causes further pressure.
Eventually the callous cracks and the fluid leaks out. This
splitting of the skin then allows bacteria (commonly
staphylococcus aureus) into the site, which leads to infection.
Left untreated, bumble foot can be deadly.
Vet intervention is required. Bumble foot can lead to
osteomyelitis (infection of the bone).
Baytril is the most effective and safe
antibiotic for remedying this ailment. Many of our Majestic
rescues have come to us with this type of foot ailment. One pill
of 22mg Baytril is administered daily until the swelling
disappears and any black scabs are no longer prevalent. This can
range from a few weeks to a few months of intervention. Some
vets will also recommend foot washes/antiseptics.
It is vital that grounds remain soft, dry
and clean in order to prevent recurrence. Access to clean
swimming water is highly recommended to expedite recovery.
The best way to prevent Bumblefoot is to
maintain clean pens for your flock. Do not keep them on
hard-packed surfaces. Pens should be kept clean and their
grounds should be soft with grass, hay or sand. Avoid constantly
wet surfaces—they should have free access to dry areas.
Since the bacteria staphylococcus aureus
tends to be prevalent among chickens, many vets will recommend
that you house your chickens and ducks in separate pens to
reduce the risk of infection.
Osteomyelitis is a bone
infection that is usually caused by the bacteria staphylococcus
aureus. When the bone is infected, pus is produced within the
bone, which may result in an abscess. The abscess then deprives
the bone of its blood supply. Often, the body will try to create
new bone around the area of necrosis.
Bacteria can travel into
the bone through the bloodstream from other infected areas in
the body or by direct infection through a wound that travels to
Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms include: lameness,
abscess, fever, lethargy, nausea, appetite loss, behavioral
changes and depression.
Treatment of osteomyelitis
depends on the severity of the infection and whether it is acute
(recent) or chronic (long term). It is vital that vet treatment
be sought out immediately because this condition can get worse
very quickly. Prognosis is highly dependent on the timeliness of
Vets will often recommend
an x-ray for your bird to determine whether an infection in the
bone is present; however, X-rays can be negative if the
condition is recent. They will also need to remove a sample of
bacteria (via a needle) from the bone in order to choose the
correct course of antibiotic treatment.
In severe cases, a pus
filled cavity develops in the bone. Your vet may advise surgery
to help drain the pus, so that the bone can heal properly. Your
vet will also want to surgically remove any damaged, necrotic or
infected tissue. Severe cases may even lead to the loss of a
IV antibiotics are
frequently administered to fight the infection. Once the
condition improves, prolonged injected or oral antibiotics are
The easiest way to prevent
osteomyelitis is to maintain good flock hygiene. If one of your
birds receives a cut or wound clean it thoroughly using an
antiseptic. Be sure to keep the injury clean. Take your duck or
goose to the vet if the wound is deep, becomes infected, is not
healing properly, if they are in pain or exhibiting any of the
Sophie B. Hawkins
Autographed T-shirt--GREAT GIFT!
Buck-A-Duck Fundraiser is
running: November 1st – 31st, 2007
Donate $1.00 --as many
times as you want!
As a way of thanking you
for your participation, we will write your name down once for
each dollar donated, and on 12/1/07 we will draw the name of one of our “Buck-a-Duck” donors.
Name drawn will receive a
complimentary Sophie B. Hawkins autographed concert t-shirt /
size XL and your name will be announced in our December 2007
T-shirt will mail by
December 5th--in plenty of time for the holidays!
Sorry… T-shirt can
only be mailed within the continental U.S.
Two ways to donate:
1) Print, clip and mail the below
form along with your donation.
2) Donate using
via our website.
Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary
17 Barker Road
Lebanon CT 06249
Street / PO Box:
Phone Number (optional):
Total Donation: $
Please PRINT CLEARLY!
incomplete forms accompanying donations
will not be included in the t-shirt drawing.
All donations to Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary are non-refundable.