Our blind henny eating her dinner (video)

Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by Dudu, Nov 9, 2012.

  1. Dudu

    Dudu Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2011
    Ħal Luqa, Malta
    One of our ex-battery hens recently went blind (she had lost one eye a long time ago, and went blind in the only good one); she is probably about 6 years old now, been with us for some 4 years for sure.

    When I noticed she was sleeping in the nest all the time and didn't touch food or water, I thought she was going to pass away soon, and we took her home just to pass away in peace and quiet. However, when offering her food and water at home, dipping her beak into it, I realized that she wants it but cannot see it, so I had to hold it before her for a few days and now she is slowly getting used to where the containers are. Over some 10 minutes she pretty much fills her crop.

    Her sister went blind in both eyes last winter and lived with us for about 2 months until she had to be put down due to seizures - she had learned perfectly well where the food and water was in her crate, and didn't depend on me for feeding her at all - she even ate a lot of the regular "chicken yummies" that I normally give to others, and used to walk around the room and scratch in old clothes too!

    I hope this girl will live comfortably also until her time comes to pass away.

  2. AnimalsComeFirst

    AnimalsComeFirst Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 6, 2011
    Hugging a Chicken
    Hmm... sounds a little like Mareks? Maybe? Or it may just be old age. I don't know, all I know is my hen Penny has blue eyes, and it hasn't passed around to any of the other hens yet.

    Cute video!
  3. b.hromada

    b.hromada Flock Mistress

    Awwww, what a sweet baby! [​IMG]
  4. SilkiesForEver

    SilkiesForEver Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 24, 2012
    Sacramento, CA
    How sweet. [​IMG] Please keep us updated on her condition. [​IMG] I'll keep her in my prayers.
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    I have read that other people with blind chickens, have the feed in a heaping pile - so they are more likely to connect with food when they try to eat. I'm wonder if she had something like a 'wrap around' bowl that she would increase the odds of finding her food. She looks like such a sweetie, I hope she does well.
  6. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 24, 2009
    I have a blind hen that has just hatched out a chick and adopted a new one.

    She is fantastic! She was blind since she hatched.

    I just make sure there is food and water 24/7 for her. I keep the food and water in the same place in the coop, and the food in in a deep bowl. She can eat well by pushing her head into the pellets and then shaking her head from side to side to get the food into her beak.

    She is funny with the water, and she has to make a few attempts before her beak comes into contact with it - sometimes she dunks her entire head under the water by mistake and then she will shake her head and flap her wings in annoyance!

    She manages really well, even free ranging she will follow the rooster by pecking at his tail feather and keeping her body next to his. If she gets left behind she will call and the rooster runs back for her!
  7. Dudu

    Dudu Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2011
    Ħal Luqa, Malta
    Thanks so much for the kind words and prayers.

    Her eye does not look affected in any way - it's clear and looks normal... I havent tried the light/darkness test yet but I have a feeling she does see light as she gets more active then.

    We have probably had Mareks cases already (with young birds), though never officially confirmed (due to the difficuly and expenses of testing we haven't gone through it yet but we are getting ready to begin vaccinating babies after they hatch anyway); this girl maybe just has it due to old age? (I don't even want to think of the scary word)

    Thanks a lot for the advice, since yesterday I put food and water nearby (in the bowls you see in the video) and so far she's enjoying her independence - she is snacking on food as I type now!!! I will definitely give her a larger bowl for the food, just to keep it filled until I come home in the evening. I just checked her crop and it's full, and the water bowl is only half full too so I think she's beginning to find things on her own!! (yippee!!)

    What a sweet story about the hen following the rooster, wow! They are amazingly intelligent, aren't they?

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