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Hi, I'm sorry but I only have a few minutes, here you can read some helpful info about head trauma (post n. 6).


Yes, you don't have to keep a bird suffering from a head trauma on a heat pad because warmth could make the situation worse.
As first thing put him in a quiet and cool room, in a soft light and see how he is doing.
He needs a calm and peaceful environment.
Seizures could be a symptom of concussion.
A heavy breath is not a good sign but, as I said, as first thing move him into a more appropriate place and let's see how he is doing.

Please keep us updated.
 

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Sorry for the late reply.

How is he doing?

He is passing through a critical phase, now we have to keep him alive until he has overcome it.
Seizures and colvulsions can happen in birds with head trauma, I know that they are very scary (last May my pigeon Marshall had horrible seizures for a whole week because he had PMV symptoms back) but be strong.

You have to try to reduce as much as possible stress, to avoid any fright or excitement and all other situations which could increase blood pressure and so brain swelling.
Have you read the links I posted yesterday?
If not, I'm going to copy some important passages, they explain the point clearly (they contain very helpful info, give them a read):

"Since the brain lies inside the bony skull, any bleeding or swelling that occurs will put downward pressure on the brain. This downward pressure from the bleeding or swelling on the brain squeezes or compresses the brain impairing its normal functioning ability.
(...)
Injuries that result in minimal clinical signs can become much more severe if the pet is allowed to become excited because of an increase in blood pressure that increases brain swelling".

"It's also possible that they convulse, show sudden palsies or twitches".

"Birds who are concussed are extremely photo-sensitive, they need much sleep".

"Heath intensifies the blood circulation and this will increase the pressure inside the brain. This will cause more pain and sickness to the bird or even kill him in the worst case.
The temperature should be around 21 degrees Celsius (70 degrees Fahrenheit)".

So, continue to keep him in a calm and quiet room (avoid any noise, music, tv, etc), in the dim light and in the right temperature.

Try to hydrate him as Marina explained (using an eye dropper).
Don't leave a water bowl next to him because birds having seizures are at risk of drowning. As it seems that he understands how to drink on his own, when it will be possible you can try offer him water by putting a small water bowl (like the one in the pic) in front of him (you can even dip his beak - not over the nostrils - in it).

Effectively the crop seems full from the pics. When did you find him exactly? Is he still pooping regularly? Try to give him applesauce as suggested, buy one without added sugar containing only apples. I am used to buy an organic fresh one, here you can see it so you can get an idea:


Warm it for a few seconds before giving it. I have an induction cooker and I am used to warm it for 5 seconds at 9 level. In any case check it with your fingers.
When you will feed him (I really hope that there are no issues with his crop. Be sure that the crop is empty before feeding him) you can add a bit of applesauce to the baby bird formula (one for seed eaters). Remember to use warm water (always check it with your fingers) when you will prepare the formula.

Regarding the injury on his head, I cared about a scalped pigeon, this is what I did: I disinfected the wound and applied an antibiotic cream twice a day for some days (you should decide how many days according to the condition of the wound). Then I stopped the antibiotic cream and applied for some days a healing cream (same thing for days).
Pay attention to any bad smell, if you notice it it means that the injury is becoming infected. In that case an oral antibiotic is absolutely needed.
I gave to my pigeon even metacam but honestly I don't know if it's a good idea in your case.

About internal injuries my vet told me that usually you could rule them out after 48 hours.
When you will feed him pay attention to the color of the mouth mucosa (mucous membranes), if it looks pale it could be a sign of anemia (which could be caused even by an internal bleeding).
In all cases, you could add to his drinking water a vitamin supplement containing iron and even B-complex vitamins, it will help him to replace the lost red cells. You can prepare the formula with the water enriched with vitamins.
Unfortunately in case of internal bleeding there is nothing we can do.

Please keep us updated.
 

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I'm very glad to hear that he is still alive!

Water with added sugar and salt is used as a rehydration solution (as well as water with added honey). Unless a yeast infection is going on, it's not harmful. Probably Marina is worried about yeasts because the crop seems slow.
ACV acidifies the contents in crop and discourages the multiplication of some bad bacteria; helps with digestion; etc.

Yes, the crop looks smaller than in the previous pics. How do his poops look like now? A pic could help us to understand if there is still "material" into his poops or if they are starvation poops.

About antibiotic/healing creams I use French products so I can't suggest you one.
Here they explain how to treat a scalped pigeon (as oral antibiotic they mention the combination of amoxicillin plus clavulanic acid. I have never used it for pigeons)


I did not give to my pigeon Drusilla (the scalped one who had PMV) an oral antibiotic because there was no sign of infection and I know that she was pecked by other pigeons (and not attacked by predators). But it's always good to have in hand an antibiotic and other meds. Remember to pay attention to any bad smell.

Did his vent area look dirty when you wiped it? In all honesty I have never noticed how the vent area of a baby looks like. I only have experience with adults pigeons because my pigeon Londo had a cloacal prolapse... I can explain how I kept her vent area cleaned: I cleaned it with a very good disinfectant called dermidine spray (I used a cotton pad). Here is a link, you could look for something similar to it:


I had to apply a cream (in my case, the vet gave me two different creams, an antibiotic one and dermaflon), if you suspect that the area is infected I think that you could apply an antibiotic cream too.

When you will check for growths remember to check even the color of the mouth. Do that very carefully and gently because it will surely be a source of stress (if possible ask for help to someone) and it's important to avoid all stressful situations.
 

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From the pic the poops look dark (I'm watching the pics from my phone so I can't see them very well). If you have at home a bottle of hydrogen peroxide you could try to put a small amount of it on the dark droppings. When hydrogen peroxide comes in contact with catalase it "bubbles", you see a white fizzling foam. Blood contains catalase. When I need to understand if there is some blood I do this "test". Of course, It's not a scientific method but it could help you to get an idea. I'm only worried about a possible presence of blood but maybe it's just the photo.

Last May my pigeon Londo got an infection (the vet ruled out yeasts and canker, it was a viral or a bacterial infection) and her crop literally did not work. I had to massage it several times a day, each time for about 10/15 minutes. I massaged it in a gentle way by circular movements. If the crop is slow, other than giving him some warm applesauce, you could maybe try a massage. From the pic the crop does not look flat but you gave him water and a bit of applesauce.
As he is in a critical condition and we don't know what issues he has (other than head trauma and scalped head) only you can judge if a massage could help or if it could be more harmful than useful. In all cases, if you decide to do that you need to be careful because you do not have to push any liquid up (I mean push a liquid into the throat/mouth) because he could aspirate. Also try to gentle press at the base of the crop (where food goes into the proventriculus).
When the crop will be empty I would start to give him a small amount of liquid formula and see if he is pooping regularly. When Londo had the infection I had to decide day by day the amount of formula, its consistency and if she needed massages. I fed her using a common 5ml syringe.

Have you noticed any bad smell coming from the mouth? Any difficulty in swallowing?

Here you can read some info about yeasts:


If you buy nystatin (nystatin 100.000 Ul/ml) and decide to give it we will explain how to administer it.

I read that you gave him vitamin k: it helps blood clotting (I rescued a pigeon poisoned by an anticoagulant rat poison...) so it could maybe help in case of internal bleeding. I think that 48 hours have now passed since you found him?

All over the years I used many different antibiotic creams but I have never used Betadine cream (only Betadine solution) nor neosporin cream. From what I read they are both antibiotic creams so I think you did not do any mistake.

Please let us know how he is doing.
 

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I'm very glad to hear that he ate 14 ml of formula! That's a good thing! For the moment I would wait and see if he is pooping regularly. If everything seems ok with his crop and poops you can start to feed him more.
If he ate without problems in swallowing probably there are no growths. Could you ask for help to somebody? It would be easier to check his mouth/throat in two persons.

I said that I was worried about a bleeding and suggested that test because I was thinking about a bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract not about internal injuries related to the fall (usually, if the bird is still alive after 48 hours, it's possible to rule them out). That could be originated by many different factors like bacterial or viral infection, a bleeding canker abscess in the stomach, cancer, ulcers, etc etc. I remember that I read in old threads even about dried blood in the gi tract related to worms or coccidia.

Try to give a look at this link, maybe you could find an avian vet in your area available to help pigeons:


Also if you are on Facebook you could join that international group, someone could maybe suggest you a clinic or help you in getting meds:



About medications:
Spartrix (carnidazole) is available there? Do you need a prescription for buying it? It's very safe for birds, a tablet won't hurt him even if he does not have canker. Metrodinazole is a strong med which could have side effects, I think that in his delicate condition spartrix would be a better option.
Nystatin is for humans, if you are in good relationships with your family doctor you could maybe try to ask for a prescription to him?

Anyway, I feel more hopeful!
 

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From what you said (reacting better to light, having appetite, etc.) it seems that little by little he is recovering from the head trauma (recovery can take a few days or even a long period, it depends on the severity of the the trauma). That's good.
Even the wound on his head seems healing well.

Does the formula contain probiotics? If not, you could look for bird probiotics and add them to the formula. I use a very good product but it's French so surely it is not available there. Just to get you an idea here you can see its composition:


Oropharma Versele Laga is a good brand and I think you can find it there. In any case you can ask for an advice at the pet shop (here birds products are available even in some garden centers, agricultural supply stores and do-it-yourself stores).
Stress and many other factors could cause an intestinal flora disorder (surely he is living a very stressful experience!) and so digestive disorders.

If you go to the pet shop give a look at plant based supplements (if they have them), recently I found very good ones. One of them (the one containing artichokes and other plants) made wonders when Londo got the infection.

About the peroxide hydrogen reaction, I was thinking that maybe he simply swallowed a bit of blood after the fall, maybe he hit his beak and a small capillary got broken.

Anyway, you are doing an excellent job! Let us know how he is doing.
 

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That's great, being so active is a good sign! It seems that he is recovering well from the head trauma!
Also having a good appetite is a good sign, normally a sick bird looks passive and does not have appetite.
Hopefully his poops will improve soon. Probiotics contained in his formula should help him.

What baby bird formula are you using? Here there are many bird formulas which look yellow in color. I attach a pic of Aurora and her brother when were babies: they were perfectly healthy (I adopted them from my vet) but, as you can see on the shelf, the urates looked yellow.
I'm going to copy a passage of an article about droppings interpretation (see the attachment):
"If the feces are colored by the color of
food items, this color can leach out into the urates, and
does not indicate a problem".

Let us know how he is doing.
 

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I have never used Kaytee exact but I checked for it online and I saw that it looks yellowish so I think that this is the reason for yellow urates. The poop in the pic looks better, there is a bigger amount of brown "material" 😁! Probably the digestive enzymes contained in the formula are helping him!

I read here on PT that all-in-one are not a good option.
Here you can read some info about metrodinazole (how it works, side effects, toxicity, etc):

 

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Thanks for the update.

That could be maybe related to the head trauma. My blind pigeon Geordi had a stupid but dangerous accident (he fell on the floor from my dad's hands....), recovery took a long time... The vet prescribed him some tablets called candilat (papaverine and vincamine), they were very helpful.

A few questions:
  • do the legs and feet look ok?
  • what are you feeding him now?
How old is he now?
 

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Agree, for the moment the best thing is keeping him in his little box.

As I said in a previous post I have never used Kaytee exact but I think that it contains a wide range of vitamins, minerals (calcium, etc) and so on?
Have you started to offer him seeds? When you take him out of his box you can put in front of him a small bowl or a small deep container (like the one in the pic) filled with a large variety of seeds of different sizes and shapes (dove or pigeon mixture and canary seeds with dehydrated fruits) and dried legumes (the ones for humans that you can buy at supermarket like small lentils, mung beans and split peas). Put your finger between the seeds and start to tap it between them (try to "imitate" a bird who is pecking at seeds). If there is enough space and you think it's safe you can leave available a seed bowl or container or small plant pot saucer into his box. If he starts to eat seeds on his own you can gradually reduce the formula. Have you found a complete vitamin supplement (vitamins, amino acids and trace elements)?
Let's see if there will be any improvement in his balance issues with a different diet and a good vitamin supplement (in case it's a deficiency... ).

As I said earlier the problem could be simply related to the head trauma. Geordi took a long time to recover (he could not stand, walk, etc) and I had to keep him into a small box with a cushion (not too firm nor too soft). The tablets given by the vet helped him a lot.

The injury on his head healed very well.
 

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In all honesty I think too that the issues are related to the fall and to head trauma because I experienced that with Geordi. Geordi fell like a stone from my dad's hands because he is blind, your little guy because was a very little baby...
I was considering the other options (deficiency, etc) just in case...

Anyway, based on my own experience with Geordi for the moment I would keep him into his box and I would stress him as less as possible. He needs a calm and peaceful environment and rest.

I don't know if candilat (papaverine and vincamine) is available in USA, I got it from my French vet. In case you find it I will give you instructions.
 

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As I said I think too that the issues (neurological or/and physical) are somehow related to the fall. This is why I asked even about his legs and feet.
Fortunately Geordi did not break his bones in the fall...

Some months ago we rescued a pigeon attacked by a predator who also had a broken leg. The leg looked like a "rubber dead leg", it was hanging down. Have you noticed something similar in the last weeks? We have experience only with adult pigeons, maybe in babies is more complicated to notice that.
You could try this test but probably you have already tried it:

-take your bird and gently turn him upside down;

- put your finger in the centre of the sole of the foot and exert a light pressure.

This way you can understand his grip strength.
Only a vet could tell if the leg got broken or if the pelvis got fractured/cracked, etc.
 

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I will add a calcium supplement in case this is true. Poop returned to normal color and crop is working fine. I dont know what caused it yesterday but he is doing better now.
Overall he is fine most of the time but it is apparent he has issues when stressed
Do you have any idea why he wont eat or drink on his own at 6-7 weeks old?

Will post when wheelchair is finished, thank you for the calcium tip.
Agree, for the moment the best thing is keeping him in his little box.

As I said in a previous post I have never used Kaytee exact but I think that it contains a wide range of vitamins, minerals (calcium, etc) and so on?
Have you started to offer him seeds? When you take him out of his box you can put in front of him a small bowl or a small deep container (like the one in the pic) filled with a large variety of seeds of different sizes and shapes (dove or pigeon mixture and canary seeds with dehydrated fruits) and dried legumes (the ones for humans that you can buy at supermarket like small lentils, mung beans and split peas). Put your finger between the seeds and start to tap it between them (try to "imitate" a bird who is pecking at seeds). If there is enough space and you think it's safe you can leave available a seed bowl or container or small plant pot saucer into his box. If he starts to eat seeds on his own you can gradually reduce the formula. Have you found a complete vitamin supplement (vitamins, amino acids and trace elements)?
Let's see if there will be any improvement in his balance issues with a different diet and a good vitamin supplement (in case it's a deficiency... ).

As I said earlier the problem could be simply related to the head trauma. Geordi took a long time to recover (he could not stand, walk, etc) and I had to keep him into a small box with a cushion (not too firm nor too soft). The tablets given by the vet helped him a lot.

The injury on his head healed very well.
Before adding a new calcium supplement check well the Kaytee exact ingredients. From what you said it contains vitamins (have you read which ones?), minerals (I suppose even calcium), probiotics, etc. In theory it should be well balanced (I have never used it). Excessive calcium is not good (as well as calcium deficiency) and could lead to different issues.

Each baby learns to eat on his own at a different moment. I remember that Hastings "Ciccio" started to eat earlier than his sister Aurora. If he still has some neurological issues related to the head trauma it could even take longer. Try to offer him seeds and to stimulate him as I explained in the post n. 85 (I posted it again). Be patient and give him time.
When he will start to eat seeds you will have to regularly give him a complete vitamin supplement, calcium and probiotics.

If the symptoms get worse when he is stressed I would stress him as less as possible. When Geordi had the head trauma we kept him into a small box and gave him complete rest as suggested even by the vet.

Keep us updated. You are doing a great job with him!
 

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I'm very sorry to hear about your serious problems, I hope everything is ok now.

You could try to offer him a bit of biscuit (something simple without chocolate, marmalade, etc). Usually birds love it. You could try to hand feed him a few small pieces (be careful to powder, avoid to give it to him) and then crumble another small piece with your fingers and leave it available. Pigeons have a sweet tooth, it could stimulate him to start pecking at foods on his own.

If you haven't tried that yet you could also buy a mixture for canary containing dehydrated colored fruits. Pigeons are attracted by colors, leave available a bowl containing only canary mixture. If he starts to eat that (or crumbled buscuit) on his own little by little he will start to eat even seeds.
Hopefully he is just slower than other pigeons, give him time and be patient. Each baby learns to eat on his own at a different moment.

The problem could be even related to the head trauma.

As he still has problems at his leg and can't stand on his own, food must be easily accessible for him.
As I can't see your bird I can't decide what is the best solution but I could suggest, just for example, a deep container. If you remember, earlier I suggested a container and posted a photo but maybe it would be better to use something bigger and heavier than the one in the pic. Of course, you have to be sure that it is something stable and not dangerous (because of your bird balance issues).
Another option could be a plant pot saucer with low edges: he could easily enter inside it and eat sitting between the seeds.
Try to find the best solution "without architectural barriers".

Keep us updated.


Yes, stress could cause intestinal flora disorder.
 
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