Ok, I give up. After four days of squirting antibiotic eye drops in to Doris's spotty eye, I'm reaching for the Tylan. She still shows no respiratory symptoms, but now her other eye is bubbling slightly. I loathe dosing the whole flock, but it seems to cause less stress all round rather than seperating Doris and treating her on her own. Plus, myco is generally present in the whole flock if one shows symptoms. I still suspect that Doris is just low from her moult, but I'm not taking any chances. I am reminded of my long battle this time last year to save my beloved Mini and feel generally quite glum.
The weather hasn't helped my mood. It has been blowing a gale here now for two days and the ground is decidedly spongey. The chooks are not impressed and have stayed in the coop only venturing forth for pellets and the now medicated water. On occassional forays in to the run they sit on the perches out of the wind and we all eyeball each other miserably. Maeve's hackle feathers are growing in now, so she's slightly less demented and the whole flock is thankful.
I wrap up in wet weather gear to go out and attend to them which is a sight they find troubling. The wind snapping my windbreaker causes a kefuffle, so I haven't even had and chickenny cuddles to cheer me up. This morning, while cleaning the coop, I heard several sneezes and saw a few headshakes. I have my fingers crossed that everyone just has a cold, but my experiences last autumn make me feel terribly fatalistic.
I promise I'll cheer up for the next post.