Fluid Under Cornea?

by Christina Parker
(Hahira GA )

Hi, we recently purchased six Dominique hens and their Roo. All were hand raised from chicks. One of the hens had a swollen eye, no purulent discharge, but clear fluid buildup under the cornea. She can open her eye, but the eye protrudes from the socket. I quickly applied Vetricyn ointment to her eye and quarantined her. Besides this and TLC, what else can a new hobby farmer and total newbie do?

Thank you,

Christina Parker,
Sleepy Hallow Heritage Ranch

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Fluid Under Cornea?
by: Sharon


You are a good and observant chicken keeper already!

Since there is no sign of infection, antibiotic salve will do nothing much, but lubricate the eye ball.

If this is fluid under her cornea, likely she experienced some kind of trauma to the eye, or was hatched with a defect in that eye. I seriously doubt that quarantining her is necessary, or that it would benefit her or the rest of the flock, unless they are pecking at her eye. Sometimes reintroducing a chicken to the flock can be a little rough, at the start.

Sounds like they were all raised together, so getting her back with them soon, I believe, would be the best thing to do.

Short of getting her to a vet for a specific diagnosis, I think you just have to keep an eye on her eye. Likely getting a diagnosis and treatment will cost you more than the whole flock.

If this was a recent injury, possibly whatever has allowed this excess fluid to build up will heal, and the extra fluid will be absorbed and cease from causing this swelling. If this is an old injury, or something she hatched with, likely things won't change and she will still live a good life.

If you notice that the swelling continues to grow, she may have a condition similar to Glaucoma, where too much fluid accumulates in the eyeball, puts too much pressure on nerves & blood flow, can lead to blindness and possible loss of the eye. But this would be the worst case scenario.

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