Keeping a Blind Chicken

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by lala4578, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. kisses4chickens

    kisses4chickens In the Brooder

    Apr 26, 2013
    Thanks again for the info and all your help, you're awesome! I started giving her garlic and ginger, and the smell is gone, woo hoo! She seems to have improved a tiny bit. She still isn't eating or drinking, but at least she is moving around a little more. I'll keep you posted.
  2. kisses4chickens

    kisses4chickens In the Brooder

    Apr 26, 2013
    My girl is all better, and after the swelling in her face went down, I noticed she still had both eyes! YAY! She's eating, drinking, and running around now. WOOO HOOOO!!!
    1 person likes this.
  3. Hholly

    Hholly Songster

    Jul 3, 2015
    Amo, IN
    That's great![​IMG]
  4. lala4578

    lala4578 Chirping

    Sep 14, 2013
    Wonderful news! So happy for you!
  5. ForrestGump

    ForrestGump Chirping

    Feb 19, 2016
    Napavine, WA
    Thank you for giving FC a chance to continue on. I have a blind hen, too, but she hatched with her condition so probably found different ways of adapting. She follows sound very well and definitely depends on her sisters a lot. Contrats on saving her.
  6. Glad I found this thread.
    I am so happy to hear of FC.[​IMG] She is beautiful and the pictures you took of her with the flowers look like heaven to me!

    I have a blind chick, her name is Chicken Little. She is 2 months old, born on Mothers Day 2016.
    She became blind at one week old when a squirrel dug under the hardware cloth in her brooder and she escaped from her Mothers protection. One other chick was killed and Chicken Little had her eye pecked out most likely from the other flock members. For some reason she cannot see out of the other eye that didnt look damaged. She had some heavy swelling in the brain so maybe that did it. We didnt think she would make it but my hubby and I didnt have the heart to end her life.

    So she is doing well now, she can find her food and water and she is in a coop with her 2 other sisters from that hatch. Her sisters go up to roost at night and leave her alone. I was looking for advice on where to keep her as she gets older. She is a little black bantam cochin. I want her to be a chicken if that makes sense and have a good life. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
  7. lala4578

    lala4578 Chirping

    Sep 14, 2013
    Hi Marie!

    I can understand your intentions to ensure Chicken Little has a normal chicken life. With some additional attention and some special accommodations she can absolutely thrive.

    It sounds like her sisters that she is living with, they accept her ok and do not pick on her? That was the first challenge I had to overcome with FC because immediately her sister and friends saw her as a weak link and pecked her. She would try to get away until she bumped into a corner to cower in :(

    To overcome this situation, I got more chicks! They grew up around FC, and since she was not broody, she was not a fan of having little ones running around her feet! They learned while growing up that she was at the top of the pecking order. They are all full grown now. The chicks were Easter Eggers and turned out to be very mellow, and the two RIRs did begin to challenge FC when they got older, so I had to move them to the old lady pen for this misbehavior (and where they would get a pecking order re-alignment, ha!). FC is happily cohabitating with the Easter Eggers.

    Oh Fire, who did you pluck?

    Accommodations: The Easter Eggers and Fire (FC) share a coop that is very standard looking. It is an A frame house on stilts, with a draw bridge style ramp for entering. There are two roost bars inside and 2 nest boxes. The only special add-on is the tiny ramp added to connect the 'draw bridge' up to the lower level roost. This is to help Fire find her way all the way up at bedtime, while the other birds simply jump up on the roost. It is interesting, she knows when it is bedtime, and starts marching around doing a high step, stretching her neck up high and trying to find something elevated to climb up on! Once she bumps into the drawbridge she walks up. Currently, it is a challenge for her to get down in the morning, so I go out early to take her down.





    In the chicken run I do have multiple food and waters set up so that she has more probability of finding them. To make it easier for her, I chose not to use traditional feed and water containers. Instead, I use multiple short buckets (frosting buckets, free at your local grocery store!) filled with water, and multiple planters filled halfway with dirt (for stability so they don't accidentally tip them over!) and pellet feed on top of that. This creates a greater surface area for her to blindly peck at to get the goods. I also try to keep the containers in the same spot. Rattling the food in the planter gets her to come over. When she hears the others eating, she perks up and follows the sound. On hot days, when I am worried about her drinking enough, I will guide her to the water a few times a day.

    A few extra things I do for Fire: She is not an active forager like the others, although sometimes she will scratch the ground and blindly peck at it. As a result, her toe nails and her upper beak grow too long. I purchased toe nail clippers for small dogs on Amazon so that I can trim them back. I have another mildly special needs bird I rescued with scissor beak that needs the trimming too. The clippers come in handy!

    Like all chickens, Fire loves her greens, but it can be challenging for her to enjoy the ones I provide in the run. To help her get her share, I will rip them into bite size pieces for her and put in her food dishes. Sometimes I will chop treats in a food processor, keep a container of them in the fridge, and give her portions from that.

    I hope this helps! I wish you the best with Chicken Little. I think you will find she will be your best behaved chookie! I know my Fire is :)

    If I can help in any other way let me know.
    3 people like this.

  8. Thank you so much for all that info. I want to learn as much as I can so Chicken Little has a good life.
    I really enjoyed the pictures.

    So far her sisters are not picking on her, I will pay close attention to that, thanks. Her brother pecked her one time and he is out with the bigger chickens now.

    She has been doing the same thing as you mentioned about FC , looking up and moving her head around when its time to roost. I didnt want to put her on a roost as she is not sure about her footing yet. I will have to get her to practice on a short one so I put a 4x4 post on the ground and I will try and teach her on that at first.

    May I ask what size of run you have for her? Also if you have a chance to take pictures of the food and water that would be great. Not sure I understand that one. How far is her feed raised? Chicken Little is pretty tiny so her food is on the ground in a little plastic cereal bowl. She spills it all over the place so I have to find something else. She is not very tall so it would have to be short.

    Last night was her first night not being on the ground and she loved it. I have a brooder in this coop with a mama and some Serama babies. It is a wire dog crate with wood around the sides so the little fluffies cant get away from mama. I put a tarp on the top of the crate and fashioned a wire enclosure about 2x2 around CL so she couldnt fall off the edge. I put one of her sisters in there with her and she finally got to snuggle with someone. I only put one in with her because if I put 2 in they would snuggle together and leave Chicken Little out. They also do a lot of posturing for different spots and it scares CL.

    Here is a picture of her as a baby chick and then what she looks like now, her first outing on the grass.
    Thanks so much again.
    Marie and CL. "Chicken Little"
  9. Ballerina Bird

    Ballerina Bird Songster

    Aug 29, 2014
    I have been loving following this story and very much hope that CL continues to do well. It's wonderful to see how much bigger she is! You and @lala4578 are so sweet to help these chickens this way.
  10. Thanks so much Ballerina Bird.
    Yes, after taking her picture today and looking back she has grown a lot!
    I am so tickled that you are following along. It really goes much deeper than keeping a blind chicken.

    First of all its people like you that are kind and are cheering her on. That makes me want to cry, to know that some people out there really care if this bird has a life and her life matters really touches me.
    I know in some sort of weird way I am a better person for taking care of her. I thinks she has something to show us all. It may not be revealed what that is right now but it will be revealed.
    Cant wait.

    And to get to talk with other blind chickens owners like lala4578, that is fantastic.
    Thanks again for checking in, I will post updates.
    Oh and by the way lala, I am also taking care of a severe scissor beak Salmon Faverole named Edwina.[​IMG]

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