Veterinary advice should be sought from your local veterinarian before applying any treatment or vaccine. Not sure who to use? Look up veterinarians who specialize in poultry using our directory listing. Find me a Vet

Keel Injuries

Keel Injuries in Ducks Overview


Keel injuries in ducks results in pain and discomfort in the area of the keel bone (otherwise known as the breast bone or chest area). Injuries may result in bruising, abscess, dislocation, or fracture (brake) of the keel.

Keel Injury Causes


There are several different causes injury to keel in ducks.
  • Falling on the keel, usually a hard or rough surface, and typically must be repeated several times
  • Repetitive friction against the keel (as a result of sliding against the ground or other rough or hard surface.
  • Direct trauma to the keel
  • Prolonged resting on keel, especially in unsanitary conditions.

Symptoms

Feather thinning
Skin reddening
Wound present
Tenderness
Bruising

Diagnosis

  • History
  • Clinical signs
  • Physical exam
  • Culture

Treatment

MethodMethod Summary
Bring the duck inside and into a comfortable 'first-aid' area. Call your veterinarian.
Thoroughly cleansing and flushing the wound
Oral antibiotics
Anti-inflammatory drugs, usually meloxicam
Topical antibiotics, such as silver sulfadiazine cream (SSD)
Debridement surgery may be needed

Prevention

  • Use soft, padded surfaces such as rubber mats
  • Use a 'donut' therapy device (or rolled up cloth formed into a ring, to protect the duck's keel.
  • Exercise trauma prevention

References

Risk Factors

  • Prolonged contact between the keel and solid surfaces
  • Poor feather coverage
  • Repeated trauma to the area
  • Rough, abrasive floor surfaces
  • Birds that spend alot of time resting on the ground
  • Thin or emaciated ducks

Case Stories

Also Consider