Saturday, July 19, 2008

Big birds

Today A confirmed that Cleo is blind in his right eye (yes, his. It turns out, I had them exactly wrong, so now they are CleoPatton & Antonelle). It is hard to say when it happened, if it was even here. When they arrived, he was in the worse shape & didn't move around much for several days. This is how the people looking after him determined "his feet hurt".

The two birds had been enclosed in a smallish pen & fed on a diet of dog food, which I have been reliably informed is the typical diet for backyard emus. This explains why there aren't so very many.

Now I need to decide how to treat it. Not that I think there is a treatment, exactly. The eye is foggy & food placed on that side is ignored. His depth perception is terrible; often Cleo will jab Antonelle trying to grab a leaf more than an inch or two from her head. I hope he doesn't blind her. I am not sure our large animal vet wants to treat large birds; horses are more her line.

Aside from not seeing to the right, he seems happy enough. As happy as a large bird with a small brain can be. We were weeding today & pulled several of the Asteraceae they love &, as usual, stems full of leaves fell at their feet, but only by accident did they stand on them to make pulling the leaves any easier. & only briefly. This is probably what happened to the dinosaurs, too.

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