Polish hen with squinty eye


Jun 25, 2021
Southeastern PA
Hi all, I posted about this hen last week as she appeared to have water bottom. I took her in from a neighbor to give another hen company and sadly that hen passed and now I’m wondering what could be going on with this girl. She came to me after being badly bullied and as I’ve gotten to spend more time with her, I notice more things.

I trimmed her crest the other day and noticed her left eye is more squinted than the right and upon a closer look, she appears to have some swelling. Her beak is concerning to me as well. Any idea what is going on? Thanks for any and all feedback!


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How does the eye look up close? Do you see any bubbles or foam in the eye, or do you notice sneezing or noisy breathing? I would clean her eye with saline and apply some Terramycin ointment in her eye 2-3 times a day. Her beak looks a little overgrown. Sometimes you can very slightly trim the top beak with dog nail clippers or a file. Be careful not to trim to much since it can be very painful.
I got a closer look at the eye and the skin is really scaly and I noticed what looks like it could be lice. I cut her crest even more which made it easier to see things. How do you treat scaly skin? I’m treating the mites/lice but it appears the skin may need something else. The eye itself looks fine and there isn’t anything in it/seeping from it.
Thanks for bumping this! I took another picture this morning. I can’t tell if she’s improving or getting worse. The first photo is from Wednesday and the other two are from today, Sunday. It appears that what I thought were lice or mites are mostly gone but now the wattle on the one side is nearly nonexistent. She is getting a bit more redness in her face which looks healthier but then the eye is still squinted and swollen. I have Electoral PSP for the mites/lice and don’t see any on her body. I gave her another bath a few days ago with an antiseptic to be sure anything remaining was gone.

I have several concerns about her:
1) she’s alone now as the chicken I had who was left from my flock after a raccoon attack on my other two passed away last week about two weeks after getting this girl. She became lethargic one day, stopped eating and drinking and died within hours. I don’t know if it was shock or a virus from this hen.
2) if she does have a virus, I don’t want her to go back to her previous flock, which was the plan, and spread something to them.
3) she was badly bullied in the previous flock and I don’t want that to happen but don’t want her alone much longer. If she is carrying something, I can’t bring in more birds and have her spread it to them so I’m kind of stuck.

Any advice is appreciated! I could take her to the vet but they are $120 just for an initial consultation not even counting testing, etc so I was hoping to avoid that.


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That’s what I though too and used some Vic’s Vaporub on her face after the bath. I felt bad because it may have stung but seems to have cleared up the scales. I’ll use Vaseline again. She’s not too happy with me and I don’t want to keep picking her up to put things on her so I’m trying to rebuild some trust by just hanging out with her a bit. Thanks for the reply!
Yes, Vicks probably would irritate her eyes. It can be easier to pick up a chicken while on the roost at night in the dark to do treatments or give medicine. My chickens always respond well to me if I offer some scrambled egg bits tossed out so that all get a chance for some.

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