Bumblefoot or Callus - A Guide to Recognising Bumblefoot

January 24, 2022

how to tell the difference between bumblefoot infection in poultry feet or urine burn or callus
Ever heard of plantar pododermatitis, aka bumblefoot?

Bumblefoot refers to an inflammatory condition caused by bacteria (like strains of Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus & Pseudomonas). Along with swelling, the infected area is often easily identifiable because of a hard, puss-filled abscess that is usually covered by black or brown scabs.

Bumblefoot is a common infection for most birds held in captivity, & you may have already come across it after purchasing infected poultry feet. 

Does this mean if I see brown scabs on chicken feet or duck feet (or any other poultry feet really) that it is "bumble foot"?

Just because you see brown or dark coloured scabs on poultry feet, that does not automatically equate to an infection. Your poultry feet could have dark scabs due to calluses.

Calluses are thick, hardened layers of skin that develop when the skin tries to protect itself against friction & pressure. I have shared some photos of calluses on both chicken & duck feet that I purchased from local grocery stores. 

If you are able to remove the layer of skin that has scabbed, to reveal healthy tissue underneath, then you are not dealing with bumblefoot. If the poultry foot has an abscess filled with puss- that may or may not be hardened, then you should toss immediately & not feed to your pet(s)!

picture of chicken foot callus, callous, dry skin, bumblefoot, urine burnpicture of chicken feet callus, callous, dry skin, bumble-foot, urine burn

picture of duck feet callus, callous, dry skin, bumble foot, urine burnpicture of duck feet callus, callous, dry skin, bumblefoot, urine burn

So if it's not bumble foot, then every scab-looking crust is a callus?

Not necessarily.
What you are seeing could also be what is known as urine burn. 

Ammonia build up from urine and faeces not being removed frequently can also lead to burns on the feet of the chickens/ducks/birds/small animals. This often results in very dark, irregular shaped, hardened crusts that can look similar to a callus (though often time they are much darker in colour), or in extreme cases, even resemble bumblefoot.

picture of chicken feet callus, callous, dry skin, bumble foot, urine burnpicture of chicken feet callus, callous, dry skin, bumble foot, urine burn

Examples of bumblefoot below!

picture of chicken feet bumblefootpicture of chicken feet bumble-foot

picture of chicken feet bumble foot

As always, I hope this post was helpful!

Follow me on instagram @nolorlin for more raw feeding content & recipes!


Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.


© Hannah Ra. Design by Hannah Ra | Coded by FCD.