Iliya Needs a Shoe

Iliya: not too happy about wearing a shoe. His wife Bella took
one look at his foot and muttered a disgusted, "Quack-quack."


Several years have passed since we've seen any bumblefoot around here. Little Iliya is limping. His right middle toe has a bumble. Yesterday he wore a neoprene shoe I'd made several years ago--just to see how the shoe fit and to get him used to wearing one. The shoe needs readjusting, because he has slender ankles and so the shoe slips forward, almost off his foot, but not quite.

I've found that 1) removing the bumble, 2) medicating and wrapping the foot, 3) giving oral Baytril, and 4) keeping a shoe on is the best remedy for bumblefoot.

Remember my goose Lucy? She went to Dr. Ponti for surgery and afterward, even following prescribed care, the bumble returned--until I put a shoe on her.

Iliya's shoe needs adjusting, so I will sew another piece of Velcro
as well as create a slit on top in which to fit his bandaged foot.
We will try this again with Iliya.

As far as duck shoes are concerned, I've always made my own. I use neoprene from a wet suit purchased from the thrift store. First I measure the duck's foot by placing a piece of paper beneath the foot and tracing around it with a pen or pencil. Then I cut out a bottom for the shoe, careful to permit a sewing edge. I find such shoes easy to make. The back of the bottom of the shoe can be cut to bend upwards and wrap around the ankle, but make sure to measure properly for the "hind toe" that extends out to the side of the foot. Some people also leave holes for toenails at the ends of the shoes. You want to make sure the shoe is not too tight, but also that it doesn't slip around too much or cause friction or stumbling.

If you aren't interested in fashioning your own shoes, you can order them online. For example, Party Fowl on Etsy, offers poultry shoes for both chickens and ducks, as well as diaper harnesses--which I don't use often.
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