Update Chicken going blind????.... Help Please!

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Suzie, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    Matilda is two years old and has always been hyperactive.... the first to race up to the house after she is released from her overnight coop - she enters the kitchen for any scraps of leftover food from the last night supper, she then searches around for any spiders and has even laid her eggs in the house if she can find anywhere convenient and comfortable - she has always been such a character!

    Two days ago I noticed that she was somewhat lethargic and on observing her behaviour throughout the day she appeared to be unsteady on her feet - I isolated her and spent quite some time watching her actions - I offered her food and she seemed disorientated - she has no vision in a downward direction, she has pecked at my arms and will eat and drink if I either hold the food/drink up ( where she can see it ) she appears to hold her head to one side and pecks in a left handed way.

    Her eyes appear to be bright and she has a good appetite but I don't know what to do now for her - I don't have any problem in feeding and offering water to her but I am concerned about her future quality of life - I would love to keep her until she reaches a ripe old age and I will ensure she has the best care possible but I am at a loss as to what may have caused this - any ideas???

    Dilemma - what would you do? Do I keep her and hope she will improve? What quality of life can she have if her eyesight doesn't improve?

    Any comments would be gratefully received

    Thanks

    Suzie

    Mattie is still with me - she still has balance issues but she is taken outside every day (if it isn't raining) - she has a bath once a week and loves being dried with a very cool hairdryer and then she will lay in front of the fire until she goes back to her house on a warm towel.... am I mad? She will stand independently and does take a few precarious steps - she is very content in her house with the company of Tweebie ( Silkie ) and her offspring - eating and drinking normally!
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2011
  2. The Red Rooster

    The Red Rooster Poultry Observer

    Sorry about you're baby. [​IMG] Try flicking your fingers at her eyes (just don't hit her with it). If she blinks, then she can probably see. Or you can do other things to see if she is blind.
     
  3. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    She definately can see in an upward direction - the injuries to my arms can testify to that.....she has some vision but is pecking randomly for food and water - she must have the shortest beak on any chicken as she is always eating and wiping her beak against the ground normally - If she is going blind I am encouraging her to listen for food and water signals. I tap the food and water containers and she is responding to the sounds and approaching the containers - I feel so helpless as I don't want to euthanase her if she may get better or have some quality to life... this is hard!

    Mattie is so well known here for her cheeky behaviour... all our neighbours come to see her antics but for now I have to keep her away from any danger - she is with others for company but I don't want to risk any injury for her with steps and obstacles that she isn't aware of..... I am at a loss as to what happened to her - I can only hope it isn't Mareks.... having read about the disease I am fearful.

    Suzie
     
  4. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    At 2 years old I doubt it. It sounds like she might have gotten into some spoiled food . Often this causes in-coordination, inability to aim correctly , often head and neck kind of wobbles.... Normally clears up over time with clean food, water and vitamins... worse cases might need an antibiotic or you can lose them also. Could she have gotten into anything else? Poision, weed killer/fertilizer, car fluids...... ?
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011
  5. nuchickontheblock

    nuchickontheblock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a chicken who is also two who has oddly placed eyes that bulge out. She has always had that but now her vision is getting a lot worse and she seems to be going blind also. I know your concern for your girl's safety. Mine suddenly seems to be spending most of her time in the coop and run where I think she feels safest -- doesn't free range and run around like she used to.

    I will be interested in seeing what others post for suggestions. Our girl has difficulty sometimes eating because her aim to peck is lousy and she misses her target so much of the time. Poor little thing gets lots of special attention and treats though because of her problem. she's always been at the bottom of the pecking order, and now she has trouble getting on the roost sometimes. [​IMG]
     
  6. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    I have had totally blind hens and roos before. If they have a will to live and adjust well then I separate them to their own pen with one easy going friend. My one hen had a little rooster, he was very attentive and kind to her. He would guide her around the pen and let her know where all the good food was. I kept everything in the same place for her.
     
  7. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks for the responses - I have had her outside in the sunshine this morning, she seems now to be having a problem balancing, I am massaging her legs as she is quite static at times due I think to her not being able to see properly.

    There is every chance that she may have eaten something toxic - there are mushrooms and toadstools around which she may have eaten before she got ill - I will keep her warm and safe and ensure she is eating and drinking, I also have antibiotic powder here and will add some to her drinking water - she does have a friend "Blindside" - he only has one eye and he spends some time with Mattie.

    All I can do now is to wait and see if she improves, her eyes are still open and bright.

    Hey Chickenzoo - I still have the chair that you posted a drawing of - maybe I can put her in there to take some pressure off of her legs - I have just noticed that she is staring to use a wing to support herself.

    Thanks

    Suzie
     
  8. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    There is also directions on here for a molasses flush that helps push out toxins that may help....... I hope she gets better for you
     

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