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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Team,

I used to trim my dove's beak because it has an over hang.I don't know what to do now. You can see which part has no pink in it and where it is safe to cut- however even if I trim both upper and lower, the beak will not be flush. Any ideas? Has anyone seen this before? The below picture is my dove's beak when it is fully closed. My concern is with the gap between top and bottom.

Sarah

Bird Beak Grey Feather Wood
 

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See the "Trimming beak" topic at this link: Trimming beak

There was a feral around here a few years back with a curved tip on his upper beak that seemed to make it difficult for him to pick-up seeds (although he did get them into his mouth eventually.) I was never able to catch him, but he showed up a few months later. It appeared that he had somehow broken away most of the curved part of his beak - there was just a tiny small sliver of it left. He did much better at picking-up seeds.

My point being that even if you were to do nothing, it's possible that the bird would overcome the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
See the "Trimming beak" topic at this link: Trimming beak

There was a feral around here a few years back with a curved tip on his upper beak that seemed to make it difficult for him to pick-up seeds (although he did get them into his mouth eventually.) I was never able to catch him, but he showed up a few months later. It appeared that he had somehow broken away most of the curved part of his beak - there was just a tiny small sliver of it left. He did much better at picking-up seeds.

My point being that even if you were to do nothing, it's possible that the bird would overcome the problem.
Thank you,

I took a look at that article to see if there was any specific info for this unique case. She eats perfectly fine. My worry is about her beak appearing open. I've looked up a lot about this in the past. I figured I would post it here because the beak shape looks different than anything I could ever find. It's not scissored. It reminds me of a loop. Still pondering any extra info. But she's happy and healthy for about 20 years old 🙂.

Sarah
 

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In the Trimming beak topic, they mention that it is safer to file down the beak than to cut it, to avoid cutting flesh and causing bleeding. If you have any fingernail files, and can hold the bird still long enough, you might be able to file around the tip of the beak until it is thin enough to easily break away?

Similar issue in a pic posted in the topic "Overgrown Beak", here: Aug 7, 2008

I wish that I knew what that feral pigeon did to fix his beak. Maybe pecking at or tugging something abrasive like an edge of cement, mortar - basically like a cuttlebone, which aren't normally needed by pigeons or doves, but then overgrown beaks aren't normal either.

Interesting reading: Beak Deformities in Landbirds | U.S. Geological Survey

They list nutritional deficiency as a possible cause.
"Overgrowth of the beak can be caused by nutritional deficiencies of vitamin A, vitamin D3, or calcium, or by an imbalanced ratio of calcium and phosphorus (Altman 1986, Harrison and Harrison 1986)."

Have you changed brand or type of bird feed in the past several months?
 

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Hi, I have an overgrown beak pigeon Pulcino (in his case it is more likely a genetic issue because when we rescued him years ago he was a super skinny youngster with a very long beak...) .
His upper beak grows continuously (I attach a pic), I have to trim and to file it each 2/3 weeks. Except for that, he is perfectly healthy and fine.

I watched your pic. The beak looks a bit like the one of my brother's pigeon, Peter (she is a disabled pigeon blind in one eye). Differently from Pulcino, her beak grows only sometimes. Both upper and lower part grow so the tip of the beak starts to have that shape. In her case the overgrowth led even to crossed beak. So when the beak starts to grow my brother asks for my help because I have a lot of experience with Pulcino 😅😉.

At your place I would only file it with a common nail file (I would not trim it because it's not so long), if you don't want to stress her too much you could do that even in more than one day (I mean, a bit today, a bit tomorrow..).

Here you can read an article about beak issues, they mention even overgrown beak causes: deficiencies, trauma, liver disease (what about the nails? They grow too much too? Because in the article they say that "Birds with liver disease may develop beak (and nail) overgrowth issues as well, which can lead to crossed beaks"), etc.:


Do you regularly give her calcium and a complete vitamin supplement? Just to give you an idea I use these ones:



Have you ever tried pigeon picking blocks? They are good sources of calcium and could contain many other stuff like minerals, anise, clay, insoluble grit, etc. Most of my birds love pecking directly at it. Depending on the cause of the overgrowth, pecking at it could maybe help to trim the beak in a natural way (of course, in Pulcino's case it does not help...)
What do you usually feed her?

Btw, 20 years ! That's great!
 

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Hello,

While lack of wear may lead to overgrowth of both the top and bottom parts of the beak in pet birds, so can various disease processes. Viral, bacterial, or parasitic infections of the beak tissue, nutritional deficiencies, metabolic abnormalities (such as liver disease), or trauma to the beak can lead to overgrowth. In some cases, overgrowth occurs rapidly within just a few weeks, while in other cases it takes months for overgrowth to become apparent.
If your bird has an overgrowth beak, the bird should be checked by a veterinarian as soon as possible to rule-out underlying illness as the cause of overgrowth and to safely have the beak trimmed. The blood supply in an overgrown beak tends to be even longer than it is in a normal beak. Therefore, there is a significant risk of inducing bleeding when an overgrown beak is trimmed. As a result, owners really should never try to trim their birds’ beaks at home.
 

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On the other hand... response from a "Certified Avian Specialist" to a post about a bird bleeding from a trimmed beak.

Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS
, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 10,932
Experience: Cert. Avian Specialist; Int. Assoc.Animal Behavior Consult; Pet Ind. Joint Advisory Council; author
Verified

-- Hold a clean cloth or cotton ball soaked in ice cold water with gentle pressure against the area for as long as he'll let you

If this doesn't stop the bleeding, dab it dry and apply a generous amount of plain corn starch to the end. This acts like 'styptic powder' but is harmless to the bird.

Do NOT use human styptic powder.

If you do not have corn starch, plain flour should work too


Let me know how it goes --- I'll stay online for you
 

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Just one clarification: owners can learn how to trim a beak as well as they can learn how to trim birds and cats nails.
I am used to trim and to file Pulcino's beak each 2/3 weeks since 2015. From what I read even the OP has learned how to do that (but, as I said in my previous post, seeing the pic I think that trimming is not needed now, you can simply file it with a common nail file).
The important thing is doing that ONLY if able to do that. No amateur hour 😅😉.
Seriously, a vet could show and explain how to do that in the proper way (even if even vets could make mistakes and start bleeding because, as Mercedes said, blood supply in an overgrown beak tends to be even longer than it is in a normal beak...).
 

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Hi, i have told be for you need to cut the overhang off the bird, the bird will not bleed have someone hold the bird then you hold his head use a nail clipper and only cut off the overhang nothing else cut off just that little part that hangs over the beak, i have done this hundreds of times never one bird bleed, when you clip it off hold the clipper under the the beak when you clip it off
 

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Yes,

I agree you could easily trim its beak with a little skill and experience,
but that's a temporary fix until the next time it grows back.
Its more important to find out why or what is causing it to grow like that, because to me its not normal.
 

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Hi, it is probably a genetic problem, lots of pigeons have an overhang its very common especially when the bird gets older, just look at that beak when he tries to pick up seeds the top beak blocks the seeds he probably never gets enough to eat
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
In the Trimming beak topic, they mention that it is safer to file down the beak than to cut it, to avoid cutting flesh and causing bleeding. If you have any fingernail files, and can hold the bird still long enough, you might be able to file around the tip of the beak until it is thin enough to easily break away?

Similar issue in a pic posted in the topic "Overgrown Beak", here: Aug 7, 2008

I wish that I knew what that feral pigeon did to fix his beak. Maybe pecking at or tugging something abrasive like an edge of cement, mortar - basically like a cuttlebone, which aren't normally needed by pigeons or doves, but then overgrown beaks aren't normal either.

Interesting reading: Beak Deformities in Landbirds | U.S. Geological Survey

They list nutritional deficiency as a possible cause.
"Overgrowth of the beak can be caused by nutritional deficiencies of vitamin A, vitamin D3, or calcium, or by an imbalanced ratio of calcium and phosphorus (Altman 1986, Harrison and Harrison 1986)."

Have you changed brand or type of bird feed in the past several months?
Thank you for looking into th
Hi, I have an overgrown beak pigeon Pulcino (in his case it is more likely a genetic issue because when we rescued him years ago he was a super skinny youngster with a very long beak...) .
His upper beak grows continuously (I attach a pic), I have to trim and to file it each 2/3 weeks. Except for that, he is perfectly healthy and fine.

I watched your pic. The beak looks a bit like the one of my brother's pigeon, Peter (she is a disabled pigeon blind in one eye). Differently from Pulcino, her beak grows only sometimes. Both upper and lower part grow so the tip of the beak starts to have that shape. In her case the overgrowth led even to crossed beak. So when the beak starts to grow my brother asks for my help because I have a lot of experience with Pulcino 😅😉.

At your place I would only file it with a common nail file (I would not trim it because it's not so long), if you don't want to stress her too much you could do that even in more than one day (I mean, a bit today, a bit tomorrow..).

Here you can read an article about beak issues, they mention even overgrown beak causes: deficiencies, trauma, liver disease (what about the nails? They grow too much too? Because in the article they say that "Birds with liver disease may develop beak (and nail) overgrowth issues as well, which can lead to crossed beaks"), etc.:


Do you regularly give her calcium and a complete vitamin supplement? Just to give you an idea I use these ones:



Have you ever tried pigeon picking blocks? They are good sources of calcium and could contain many other stuff like minerals, anise, clay, insoluble grit, etc. Most of my birds love pecking directly at it. Depending on the cause of the overgrowth, pecking at it could maybe help to trim the beak in a natural way (of course, in Pulcino's case it does not help...)
What do you usually feed her?

Btw, 20 years ! That's great!
This post is very insightful and thought out!!! I noticed that yes since both of the ends grow out she is getting scissor beak!!!! Do you think if I trim upper and lower that will help reverse it?
 

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I didn't read all the posts, but use a nail file and file the beak to where you want it. My wife had to do that with some of our old homers and it works great and no worry about cutting more than you want. Nail file works best...
 

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Thank you for looking into th


This post is very insightful and thought out!!! I noticed that yes since both of the ends grow out she is getting scissor beak!!!! Do you think if I trim upper and lower that will help reverse it?

I can't know what is the cause of the overgrowth issue but, yes, you should keep both upper and lower beak at the right length (you can simply file the beak with a common nail file if it is not too long). Proper length should prevent the scissor beak from becoming irreversible.
 

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The key is to remember it might take a few months using the nail file or other methods to get the beak straightened up. Take your time and get it a little better each time and eventually we didn't have to file our homer any longer. Once and a while for a tune up, but his scissor beak got much better with filing.
 
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