Hen has gone blind

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AnimalFriend

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Hen has gone blind
« on: September 24, 2020, 10:26 »
Hi, we rescued four lovely Ex-commercial hens Two years ago. One died earlier this year after a very happy retirement in our garden.
The boss, Racquel, is now unwell. Seemingly suddenly on Saturday she lost her eyesight and didn't come out of the house.  Her eyes are clear and shiny, her feathers are as glossy as ever and her comb is red and plump, however she now just stands around and closes her eyes as if she is feeling poorly. She is not able to find her food or water and I have been hand feeding her the last few days. She's having bits of water and is loving berries and corn but shows no interest in her usual feed. She is also not scratching around so isn't getting any grit.
I guess what I'm after is a second opinion. It seems to me that she is likely to starve if left the way she is. She wouldn't appear to be taking enough food from me in order to stay healthy for any period of time.  This is the first time I've been in this position with a hen and I am struggling to know what to do with her her given that she seems reasonably healthy other than the fact that she can't see.  Other notable information is that shed had a dirty bottom for quite a while and I discovered she had lice earlier in the summer: we removed a lot of the feathers around her vent and sprayed her and the others. There are no signs of lice now, but she does still have a bit of a dirty bottom and there is also quite a strong smell of ammonia coming from her.  They were all wormed in the spring.  She has always been a good lawyer but I Dont  think shes laying at all now. I understand the fact that she has gone blind suggests that she is probably not as healthy as she seems.
Have you heard of such a situation before?

If I am to get her put to sleep are you able to recommend a vets in the West Yorkshire area that would be able to assist? I have rang my local office but they have said it would be 30 and that is not including cremation. This seems quite expensive to me. I don't feel strong enough to be able to end her life myself.
I hope to hear from you soon.
With best wishes
Ps the photos are from today after almost a whole scrambled egg and a tiny bit of water.
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« Last Edit: September 24, 2020, 11:31 by AnimalFriend »

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New shoot

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2020, 08:38 »
Sorry AnimalFriend, but she needs to see a vet, expense or no.  The symptoms you describe are fairly extensive and should be investigated immediately.

If they can treat her, well and good, but it would be cruel to let her suffer if not. For a hen to be so depressed and uninterested in food, she would have to be very ill and/or in pain.  For an ex-commercial hen, 2 extra years can be all they get. They are pushed hard.

Some owners will end things if they can see there is no hope. Some opt for the vet doing it. Either way, someone has to step up  :(


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jambop

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2020, 20:00 »
Cut out the middle man give it the chop and have a nice pot au feu chicken... it is what they are for... here is a nice recipe

Edit to remove link - please re-post in the recipe section rather than the poultry forum
« Last Edit: October 03, 2020, 20:25 by New shoot »

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New shoot

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2020, 20:57 »
Cut out the middle man give it the chop and have a nice pot au feu chicken... it is what they are for... here is a nice recipe

I'm sure anyone who raises meat birds would tell you eating a sick bird is not a good idea at all, but each to their own. 

Even with healthy old laying hens, you would need several to make anything worthwhile.  They are pretty lean under all those feathers.  Perhaps you have never seen the carcass of a old layer ?  I have and been proudly served a dish made with it.  It was pretty stringy and not that great.  I ate it as I didn't want to hurt a friend's feelings, but can't say I would rush to try that again :nowink:



« Last Edit: October 03, 2020, 20:23 by New shoot »

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samuria

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2020, 21:50 »
Cut out the middle man give it the chop and have a nice pot au feu chicken... it is what they are for... here is a nice recipe

 animal friend asked for some advise  not a blooming recipe...
have a bit of savvy  ::)
« Last Edit: October 03, 2020, 20:24 by New shoot »

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Debz

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2020, 09:50 »
The other problem with a poorly hen is that many vets are utterly clueless about illnesses.  I took one to a vet who told me they were classified as exotic (go figure).  I actually told the vet what I thought was wrong with her, she looked it up and thought I was probably right.  The medicine they would have to order for her would take 3 days to arrive and cost 80 or there was a supplement I could get at the pet shop for 15 which might do it.  Thankfully the pet shop stuff worked but I lost all my ex-battery hens within 2 years of getting them.  They really have a short retirement with you. 

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jambop

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2020, 09:52 »
Cut out the middle man give it the chop and have a nice pot au feu chicken... it is what they are for... here is a nice recipe
animal friend asked for some advise  not a blooming recipe...
have a bit of savvy  ::)

Well yes I understand that and given the costs of vet bills giving it the chop and making a nice bit of food from it fits the bill nicely... in my opinion. Reminds me of my brothers old Plymouth rooster Jasper lovely bird. Anyway he flared his spurs at one of the children... the next weekend we were tucking into a fantastically authentic Coq au vin ... fed eight people did old Jasper he was a whopper... and provided a beautiful cape for my fly tying. There is no place for sentiment when you are paying good money out only my opinion mind each to their own.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2020, 08:53 by New shoot »

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Aunt Sally

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2020, 11:26 »
Have a little bit of humanity, jambop.

Most of the people on these forums who keep hens consider them to be pets.  Please try to remember that!

Would you kill and eat your pet dog if it looked a bit off colour ?


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jambop

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2020, 11:45 »
Have a little bit of humanity, jambop.

Most of the people on these forums who keep hens consider them to be pets.  Please try to remember that!

Would you kill and eat your pet dog if it looked a bit off colour ?

Are you serious? A hen is an animal kept for food purposes last I heard. If it is a pet get the question into the pets section of the forum... next thing is we will be hearing about an of colour cauliflower... my suggestion whould be steam and treat with a healthy coating of cheese sauce and into a hot oven, then eat the poor thing with tears streaming down ones face !

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Plot 1 Problems

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2020, 14:20 »
Not sure why you feel the need to be so pugnacious jambop. Just because you have an alternative view to others on how chickens are regarded doesn't suddenly mean that this isn't a valid topic in this section. The question was about the health of her hen, not how you choose to cook and eat your food. Please consider beaing a little more considerate going forward.

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grinling

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2020, 20:19 »
Actually my cauliflower was very open headed this year,as was the local shops, must have been the weather, had some, dog having the rest.
A blind hen can survive providing it knows where food and water is. If it cannot, it will go downhill slowly, culling is the best way.
Some people are not bothered about culling,I have done lots including pullets, it is something I would prefer not to do.

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jaydig

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2020, 15:58 »
I'm sure everyone has a different opinion, and they are entitled to this.  Personally, I feel that after all their hard work my girls deserve a comfortable "retirement", until they become too infirm or unhealthy to enjoy life, and then I ring an old allotment friend who holds a stockman's licence, who takes them to his own smallholding and then despatches them quickly.  I currently have three hens, only one of whom is laying, but that's enough for us, and they're currently enjoying their retirement and still providing hours of entertainment for our granddaughter into the bargain.

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New shoot

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Re: Hen has gone blind
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2020, 20:08 »
Quite so jaydig  :)  There is no 'right' or 'wrong' with different views on poultry keeping.

If you want keep birds for eggs, for meat or just because you can, you are welcome in the poultry forum and we will do our best to help with any questions  :) 




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