Chickens going blind

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by pedalgirl, Jul 4, 2013.

  1. pedalgirl

    pedalgirl In the Brooder

    Dec 29, 2011
    A few weeks ago I posted that some of my chickens were going blind. I have not had much response from the forum. I found a great book with lots of good information. I think my girls may have conjunctivitis. They have no symptoms other than the eyes, no bad odors from breath or pooh, no runny eyes or sinuses. No swellings or discoloration of the body and no masses. I have had no hens die from this. They are just going blind and have some light sensitivity. I have had some breathing heavy and droopy wings but it has been 112 - 119 degrees, after spending the night in the cool coop they are fine until they get hot again.

    If I turned off the fan and swamp cooler and got on the ground I can smell a slight ammonia odor. My question is can I use lime on the ground to help with the odor. Or will the girls eat it and die? I know they move my pine bedding and take dirt baths. I don't want to cause more harm.

    Second I have taramycin powder for the water and will dose according to instructions, can the eggs still be consumed or should I pitch them? If I need to pitch them how long will I need to do this?

    Thank you,
  2. esther5

    esther5 Songster

    Aug 23, 2011
    sorry to hear this. i wish i could advise. hopefully someone will come along who knows some answers to your questions.
  3. theGrizzFan

    theGrizzFan In the Brooder

    Sep 3, 2012
    Missouri Ozarks ?

    Very curious about where the feed store got the chicks from. I had looked through the forums but didn't search for your title on the thread, which I should have as it is exactly what's happening to our chickens. I searched "cloudy eyes" and "cloudy pupils", so I apologize. Our chickens are 5 months old, and from your other thread I see that yours are close in age.
    Did you look closely to rule out eye worms?

    Best of luck to you.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2013
  4. pedalgirl

    pedalgirl In the Brooder

    Dec 29, 2011
    Thank you for the reply. I went out and looked at their eyes & lids. I do not see any signs of worms, no scratching at their eyes or inflammation indicating there is anything in there. They just have the cloudy pupils. I had never heard of cataracts in chickens. I have a total of 10 hens now affected with this from 2 different age groups/ purchased at different times. I will call the feed store and inquire where they bought their chicks from, and also ask if they have had any other complaints. They bring in 300 chicks at a time, so if it is genetic, worms or disease I am sure someone else has said something to them.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2013
  5. Odonada

    Odonada Hatching

    Jul 4, 2013
    I have hens with cataracts. Conjunctivitis will not cause blindness in and of itself. Cloudy pupils (not to be confused with cloudy corneas) are almost always cataracts. Of course there are many kinds of cataracts - hopefully it's not a glaucomatous issue.

    there is no treatment for cataracts in chickens that I am aware of, cataracts are a natural aging process of the eye. Unfortunately, there are factors (including genetics) that can speed the process in some chickens.

    i have removed my blind hens (one has bilateral cataracts, one with only one eye affected) to a smaller pen. One still lays eggs from time to time, the roosters come visit occasionally, as do some of the babies that run around the yard. It's not fatal and doesn't have to be a death sentence. The hen with bilateral cataracts is 9 years old.

    i hope this helps.
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens


    I have dealt with eyeworm and the chickens (two) that had it only had the cloudy pupil on one side. No drainage or other signs. But if I looked closely at the bottom of the eye, I could see a little yellowish/cream color thing there that I eventually noticed was a worm. Look very carefully.
  7. ChickNanny13

    ChickNanny13 Crossing the Road

    Jun 23, 2013
    The Big Island/Hawaii
    Can't help with your chickens eye sight but can with the ammonia odor....Read about it on another thread, Sweet PDZ, it's great stuff. Find it at any feed store, mainly for horses but researching on the internet it's ok for chickens too. My coops' floor is painted plywood, everyday I scrap the poop & was disinfecting with Lysol. Now what I do is scrap the poop, sprinkle some PDZ and with gloved hand rub in, it takes up the residue poop & the odor is next to nothing. It's all natural too. See if you can find the thread on Sweet PDZ and read up on the internet.
  8. Jeniferl29

    Jeniferl29 Songster

    Feb 18, 2013
    Adairsville, GA
  9. appps

    appps Crowing

    Aug 29, 2012
    Yes you can use garden lime in the pen and I have done so with no problems. I don't know if it will help with odour we use it because it helps with mites etc.

    Just make sure its the garden type not the cement rendering type.

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