Sick hen seems blind

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by chic-a-boom, Jan 6, 2011.

  1. chic-a-boom

    chic-a-boom Hatching

    Jan 5, 2011
    I have a sweet buff Orpington who I noticed was behaving strangely today. She was not holding her tail feathers up. Since I had another hen die a month ago who started with the same symptom, I'm really concerned.

    My hens will be 2 years old in March. I had 5 hens (now I have 4). They haven't been laying since around Oct. this year. They all recently molted for what seemed like a long time. It's been cold here this winter, so I've fortified their coop this winter to be warmer. I often let them range in my yard.

    My buff had her tail down today. I threw some scratch in to the hens. She seemed to not be able to see where it was. She didn't go toward it, but pecked a little right below her. And she kept going in circles, like a dog chasing its tail. I took her out of the coop and put her in a carrier with a heat lamp in the garage tonight. I've checked on her several times and she is still behaving very strange. It's like she can't see. She was having something that looked neurological ticks and was circling her head around, then sort of fell to the side. She seemed comforted by me petting her, but otherwise pretty out of it.

    I'm wondering if she ate something poisonous (maybe the other hen ate the same thing). I can't think of anything in my yard that is poison, though it has been rainy lately and I've seen some strange little mushrooms. Would a hen eat poison mushrooms?

    I can't find anything else wrong with her. She is a little light, but was otherwise healthy and active as far as I could tell up until today. I don't see any lice or parasites. She did have diarrhea.

    Any help would be appreciated. She is my sweetest hen and I don't want to lose her.
  2. Stephi ann

    Stephi ann Hatching

    Jan 5, 2011
    I've had a hen a few years AGo with this kind of symptoms. Its called wry neck. There are other names for it as well. Its a swelling of the brain. I was told when she was given to me that she had an infection in her ear. After a vet visit we found out it was too far to save her. There was nothing we could do. Vet said she would eventually starve to death because the head would become too heavy to hold up and she wouldn't be able to eat even by hand because if the curve of the head. I suggest getting her to the vet ASAP in case I'm right and they may help. Hope all goes well.
  3. Judy

    Judy Crowing

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    A search on here for "wry neck" will give you a lot of info on how people treat this at home.

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