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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 09:34 AM
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Please Help me help a baby dove


Help Please! I found a baby mourning dove who appears to have a broken leg. He is starting to try to fly but I notice another dove (adult) seems to be attacking it. He has some small superficial cuts on his head. Also the mom and dad seem to keep close, and chase the mean dove away. So my question is should I seperate this baby or leave it in nature and just let it's parents care for it.

Thank's hopvila
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 09:47 AM
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Can you tell more about the broken leg? Is he keeping it elevated, does it stick out to the side... why do you think it might be broken?

Pidgey
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 09:54 AM
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Thank's for the reply pidgey. The leg sticks out to the side and although he can get around he definitly has trouble with that leg. It appears it is a upper leg or hip injury.
hopvila
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 09:58 AM
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Well, it could be a "splay leg" which is a condition where they grow up in the nest that is too slippery. If they can't keep their feet under them and they consistently slip out sideways, it may grow that way permanently without help.

That said, it'd probably be a good idea for you to get the chick for a closer examination so that a determination can be made.

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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:01 AM
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This is a thread here on Pigeon-Talk with links to information about splay leg and how to treat it:

http://www.pigeons.biz/forums/showthread.php?t=17869

And this is a link to drawings of a pigeon's skeletal structure for reference:

http://people.eku.edu/ritchisong/skeleton.html

Pidgey
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:05 AM
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Well, it did grow up in a slippery nest. They nested on top of a t.v. in my garage. It's sibling even fell off once and was placed back in the nest. I don't know what I am looking for to give it a closer examination.
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:05 AM
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Thanks for the link i'll check it out.
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:07 AM
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Oh, it's not so tough to diagnose a splay-leg versus a broken leg. A broken leg is going to be oddly loose whereas a splay-leg is going to be able to push against you at the foot when you handle the bird. If that's what it is, then we either need to get you instructed how to deal with it or find a good rehabber in your area.

Pidgey
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:13 AM
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If there's any way that you can post a picture, it might help with advice, too.

Pidgey
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:15 AM
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OK it's a splayed leg. My wife called the only two rehabbers in our area and one said they were not taking any more birds, the other will not return her calls. So I guess it's going to be us. One of the links you sent showed the use of string, is this a good method?
hopvilla
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:17 AM
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Sorry, I have no digital camera.
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:17 AM
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How far out is it splayed? I usually use the old-type white medical tape and a foam block.

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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:20 AM
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Then you can describe it like in degrees of roll. For instance, let's say you were looking down the legs from the back side. There's that joint where the tibiotarsus joins the tarsometatarsus. It looks like a backward-facing knee on birds in general. Structurally, it's actually the same joint as the ankle on us so the part that's swinging out is actually all foot. Anyhow, would you say that the part that's rolled out is out of alignment by 30 degrees, 90 degrees or what? If it helps to think of it in "o'clock" numbers, you can describe it that way, too.

Pidgey
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:24 AM
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The splay is only mildly noticeable. We have medical tape on hand as my wife is an R.N. What about after we fix the leg? What should we feed it?
hopvila
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hopvila hopvila is offline
Posted 2nd June 2007, 10:27 AM
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Most of the time it is about 30 degrees, but once in awhle it goes to 90 degrees
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baby bird, baby bird formula, broken leg, dove mix, flight feathers, local pet store, mourning dove, pet store, splayed leg

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