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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So my two doves have a Clostridium infection.

It started several months ago and after a couple months of smelly poops, a few days of full-on diarrhea, and one instance of vomiting, I knew whatever it was wasn't going to resolve itself. Back in June, we took them to an emergency clinic (it was a Sunday but I wanted them seen ASAP). We didn't run any tests because the vet there didn't think her techs would be comfortable running the type of tests she wanted to do. She gave us baytril and referred us to a vet clinic better equipped to deal with birds in case the antibiotic didn't work.

It seemed to get a bit better. The poops got less watery, were more well-formed (coils again, no more diarrhea), and there wasn't ever another instance of vomiting. But within a couple weeks the poops were reeking again and watery, albeit not as runny as before. We went to the recommended vet and had an exam and ran a fecal smear and Gram stain. Nothing came up with the first set of tests. The vet said to try unfiltered apple cider vinegar in the water in case that would do the trick, but to do another test if that didn't help. Two weeks of that and no improvement. The second set of tests showed Clostridium.

We were given metronidazole, which they have been on for 2+ weeks now. We are bringing in a new sample tomorrow, because the vet said she needs to test them again to make sure we're not dealing with multiple causes or something. I was hoping she would just give us another antibiotic to try, but she insists on doing tests again.

These girls are my babies and I want to make sure they get better, but at this point between two sets of exam fees, two sets of tests, and two courses of medication, I've spent around $800 (Canadian dollars, mind you) trying to get them better. So far it's just not working. I am just a university student and don't have a lot of extra cash to spend, so I don't know what I'm going to do if this next round of testing and medicine doesn't work.

Long story short, has anyone else dealt with Clostridium in their doves or pigeons? I'm not finding a whole lot of information online. Mostly it's general symptom descriptions, or information about avian botulism, which this certainly is not.
 

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Sometimes Vancomycin might help. Birds that are on antibiotics for a long time, especially broad spectrum antibiotics, as they kill a lot of good bacteria that helps to keep things in check. Do your birds get probiotics and ACV? They can help them to build up the good bacteria that they need to fight the other stuff.
 

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I couldn't get, do they give metronidazole for chlostridium. Chlostridium is a bacteria as I know and metronidazole is anti protozoan. How many days the vet asked to administer this? Metronidazole do have some severe side effects of overdosing.
Is your vet an avian vet? I think he/she must be?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Jay3 - They don't get probiotics, but I have been giving them a bit of raw, unfiltered ACV in their water (about 1:100 ratio) for the last month or so. I will ask the vet about the probiotics, as I'm not really sure where to find avian probiotics here. I'm not familiar with vancomycin but I will do some reading up and maybe ask the vet if that's an option too.

kiddy - metronidazole is both an antiprotozoan and an antibiotic. I am following the vet's instructions for dosage and she said two weeks, but she told me to continue it an extra couple days over the weekend until I could bring a new sample in, which we will be doing this morning. And yes, the vet is an avian vet and the clinic she works in is known for working with birds and exotics.
 

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Kiddy, yes, it is often treated with Metro, if that fails, can be treated with Vancomycin, if again failure, then sometimes injectable Metro.

elizaisling, I'm surprised that your vet hasn't suggested probiotics, as these are very important. Spores for chlostridium can be found in soil even. The good gut bacteria they carry helps to block this bacteria from taking hold, so probiotics are important to help rebuild the good bacteria that help to fight off bad bacteria. Also, being on antibiotics which kill both good and bad bacteria open the door for Chlostridium. Any time you medicate with antibiotics, it should always be followed up with a few days of probiotics. Many people give them weekly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just ordered some avi culture 2 and a bottle of F10 veterinary disinfectant. We'll hear about the results of the latest Gram stain tomorrow. What an ordeal this is turning out to be...
 

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Great that you are getting the probiotics.
Shouldn't the bird be off the meds for several days before doing more tests?
 

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Yes elizaisling and Jay, read later that metronidazole treats chlostridium as well as trichomonads, never gone through this before. Thanks. I am sure probiotics should help as really necessary after such long antibiotic treatments.
And yes if test samples taken immediately after treatment, I think it won't show anything because antibiotics knock down the bacterial count to such extents they don't come in tests. Should ask the vet about it.
 
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