Poor New Girl - I'm not sure what to do

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by HennyJenny, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. HennyJenny

    HennyJenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 26, 2009
    Bennington, NE
    Correct that - I'm not even vaguely sure what to do.
    My New Girl (a rescue chicken from my Dad's farm) - has had just one issue after another since I moved her out to the coop. Tonight it is skin blistering cold - I went out to take the girls a little oatmeal and warm water - and the New Girl's eye is puffy and more or less swollen shut - sooo ignoring the threats of divorce from my husband - I brought New Girl into the house - crated her and stuck her in the bathroom.

    I gave her a bowl of warm food which she gobbled up. She immediately seemed happier to be in the tiny crate with a warm towel and food that she didn't have to fight the big girls for. There were no signs of this yesterday - in any event - now I search the forums for posts and advice about chicken's with swollen puffy eyes. She doesn't have any drainage from anywhere other than this eye. She isn't puffy anywhere other than this eye. The eye itself where I can see - doesn't seem damaged as much as it seems to have a coat of thick but clear mucous and some matting - although the matting does not seem to be why the eye is mostly closed.

    I've seen about 3 different physiological/disease reasons for this - but given the mucous is clear and there is no other drainage, I'm thinking maybe an injury?? She's had a pretty tough few weeks locked up in a coop with Missy and Blondie and the whole picking thing - so I'm thinking tonight I let her eat, drink, sleep, and be warm and settled and then tomorrow I'll work on the eye (cleaning etc.).

    Ok - so maybe I have more than a vague idea of what I want to do. I just want someone(s) to tell me if I don't mess with this eye for one night - it's going to be ok to deal with in the morning. If it gets worse I've separated her from the other two (who don't show any signs of anything but being more cold than they want to be.

    Thoughts please? Thank you!
    Jenny
     
  2. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Well... I have no experience with injured eyes (other than on my cat), but it sounds like it will hold until tomorrow (which it did with my cat...lol). She's eating and drinking. I don't think holding off overnight on putting some kind of salve in her eye will do any more damage. I think I would need the time to mentally brace myself for the exam...lol. Hope the little girl is okay!
     
  3. HennyJenny

    HennyJenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 26, 2009
    Bennington, NE
    Thank you so much! That's about exactly where I am at. I am exhausted from the day and she's warm and fed - and the struggle to examine and clean out the eye - just exceeds the risk vs reward exchange. If I thought she was in pain - I'd investigate in a second -I am assuming that if this is an infection it will all look worse in the morning - by which time I will have had enough sleep to think logically about what to do.

    When I first searched "eye swollen shut" the first post that came up contained some devasting diagnosis that would wipe out my coop if not addressed with a heavy hand. My brain just shut down after that and I just wanted someone to tell me it would be ok [​IMG] Thank you.
     
  4. purpletree23

    purpletree23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2009
    I think all of the swollen eye poblems we have been seeing on this forum have to to with the extreamly cold weather we have been having. It's just too cold! I would rinse her eye with saline solution for contact lens wearers and see if that helps. It's soothing and has germ killing properties.

    Bringing her inside to a nice warm house and them outside again is going to really put a strain on her system. How warm is their coop? Can you put a heat lamp in there until this weather passes? Are you giving them scratch so they can keep warm?

    I'm afraid BYC'ers are going to loose chickens because of this awful weather system.
     
  5. HennyJenny

    HennyJenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 26, 2009
    Bennington, NE
    Tonight it is going to be -24. I had a light out there and was putting hot water bottles out for them every night until last night. Last night the windchill was -50 (I know I know it's not that cold in the coop [​IMG]) but the actual temperature was something like -16. So I brought out the big heat lamp bulb and the hot water bottles and I've had that coop locked up tight as a drum - it's usually between 15 to 20 in this zero degree weather. I haven't been too worried. I'm more worried about the heat lamp. New Girl just went out to the coop (after being quarantined for about 4 weeks) - about two weeks before Christmas which is about when this stupid weather started. Since then she's had all of her backend feathers removed courtesy of my girls but we managed to get through that - but I in a coop with three birds - she's about as close to the bottom of the totem pole as you can get. It was also too cold for me to nurse that eye out there - I don't have any shelter when I'm out there and by the time I shovel my way to the coop and get the door open - I don't have once brain cell left that can make a decision so I just brought her inside. We're supposed to move back up into the 20's and 30's next week. I can get away with keeping her in the house until the warmer days after I can get the coop cleaned out and then I'm hoping she will have had a chance to recover from everything, and have had several first chances at the food and be a little stronger. If you had ever told me that I would have moral dilemas regarding the care of chickens - I would have said you were crazy. I am 40+ odd [​IMG] years old - I have lived here all of my life and I have never ever ever seen weather like this - ever. It's a little nervewracking when I'm responsible for animals - I don't know enough about anyway. They are getting warm oatmeal, scratch, warm water, and layer mix twice per day right about every 12 hours. I think they are in too small of a space for as long as they have been cooped up and they have cabin fever just like we do! I will try to irrigate her eye. That seems like a good first step. Thank you so much. Maybe I just need to ramble about the worries. I do hope no one loses birds to this weather. It really is hideous.
     

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