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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got a pair of white garden doves. They had 2 eggs which hatched 10days ago. On day 8 I noticed that one squab was only half the size of the other. I thought it would die and being a softie I took it out of the nest and have been trying to handrear it in the house. It's still with me today but it really isn't growing. Its eyes are mostly shut. However, it does feed, I use a method of filling handrearing slurry mixed with soja milk into the finger of a surgical glove, cutting a slit in the tip and sticking its beak inside. Is this kind of feed okay? Why isn't the little one growing?

To make matters worse, I noticed today that the parent birds did not return to the aviary and the chubby sibling was sitting shivering in his nest after dark. I've brought him into the house overnight and fed him the same mixture. He was VERY hungry. Now I'm dreading that something happened to the parent birds (they've never stayed out before) and that I'm stranded with two orphans to raise. I already feel quite shattered looking after the tiny chap and don't quite know how I am to cope with the two should the parents not return.

Any advice most gratefully received.

Spok
:confused:
 

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appears you are foster mom,..i have not had this problem,the parents something must have scared them off,..i set out crumble for the parents and it dissolves easliy for the parents to feed babies,..you can buy it at grain feederies-ie horses,cows,farm animals-chickens like it too,looks like grape nut cereal/mix with warm water and hand feed both babies,they may not always sqauke when they are hungry,if they are eating on their own that would be a plus,.. keep them at room temp/heating pad under the nest would be a good idea-(100.*)-they normally grow fast-change nest every couple days-give them room to move around -no dog bowl/use a 3 liter box,,/-30-days fully feathered,..buddies for life-i would say,..sincerely james waller
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
thanks for your replies! I feed them on a rearing mix sold in the UK which is supposed to be suitable for use during both rearing and moulting. Incidentally, I am keeping them warm!

Unfortunately the parent birds haven't come back today either. I had them for about a year, they were ALWAYS in at night. So now I wonder whether they have come to a sticky end, just can't figure out why it has struck both at the same time. My other doves are in the aviary, so there was clearly nothing that scared them away.

The tinier of the two swabs is losing weight. It started off about 45g, rose to 52g but is now barely 40. I am wondering how much longer I can let this go on.

The bigger bird (now 11 days old) weighs 103g. I managed to get it up to 111g after the feed. I feel really quite upset by their plight. Any further words of encouragement, suggestions etc. would be gratefully received.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
how bad can it get? UK

I've got a pair of white garden doves. They had 2 eggs which hatched 10days ago. On day 8 I noticed that one squab was only half the size of the other. I thought it would die and being a softie I took it out of the nest and have been trying to handrear it in the house. It's still with me today but it really isn't growing. Its eyes are mostly shut. However, it does feed, I use a method of filling handrearing slurry mixed with soja milk into the finger of a surgical glove, cutting a slit in the tip and sticking its beak inside. Is this kind of feed okay? Why isn't the little one growing?

To make matters worse, I noticed today that the parent birds did not return to the aviary and the chubby sibling was sitting shivering in his nest after dark. I've brought him into the house overnight and fed him the same mixture. He was VERY hungry. Now I'm dreading that something happened to the parent birds (they've never stayed out before) and that I'm stranded with two orphans to raise. I already feel quite shattered looking after the tiny chap and don't quite know how I am to cope.

I feed them on a rearing mix sold in the UK which is supposed to be suitable for use during both rearing and moulting. Incidentally, I am keeping them warm!

The parent birds have now been gone about 24 hrs. I had them for about a year, they were ALWAYS in at night. So now I wonder whether they have come to a sticky end, just can't figure out why it has struck both at the same time. My other doves are in the aviary, so there was clearly nothing that scared them away.

The tinier of the two swabs is losing weight. It started off about 45g, rose to 52g but is now barely 40. I am wondering how much longer I can let this go on.

The bigger bird (now 11 days old) weighs 103g. I managed to get it up to 111g after the feed. I feel really quite upset by their plight. Any further words of encouragement, suggestions etc. would be gratefully received.

Spok
 

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I'm so sorry to hear your parent birds are missing and the one baby looks sick.

Do you have any rats or mice that may be getting to the feed? Parent birds can also be carriers without displaying any symptoms. It is possible the baby may have Paratyphoid or another issue going on. It is very treatable with an antibiotic like Baytril, but you need to take care of this issue quickly.

Please make sure to feed the baby with a good quality baby dove/pigeon rearing formula till crop is almost full. Make sure to follow instructions on formula, feed only when the crop is empty and keep babies warm.
 

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Can you let us know where in the UK you are?

Were the parent birds adults when you got them? How long have you had them?

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The aviary floor is made up of big patio slabs, the frame is 1cm above the slabs to allow water etc to be flushed away. Through this gap field mice get inside to the feed. I haven't seen any rats and would like to think that the gap is too small for them.

I live in Canterbury, Kent. I got the parents last year from a breeder in Surrey when they were about 4 months old.

The bigger bird is feeding well and makes a beeline for the syringe which I now use with the tip cut off and pierced latex stretched across the opening. I wished I'd started with this right away. The little one keeps looking poorly. I think its skin on the neck is reddening almost like a baby's bottom when they have a fungal infection. Maybe it's time to visit the vet on Monday (he'll probably think I'm mad and I must say I am beginning to think so too)

:( :( :(
 

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The aviary floor is made up of big patio slabs, the frame is 1cm above the slabs to allow water etc to be flushed away. Through this gap field mice get inside to the feed. I haven't seen any rats and would like to think that the gap is too small for them.

I live in Canterbury, Kent. I got the parents last year from a breeder in Surrey when they were about 4 months old.

The bigger bird is feeding well and makes a beeline for the syringe which I now use with the tip cut off and pierced latex stretched across the opening. I wished I'd started with this right away. The little one keeps looking poorly. I think its skin on the neck is reddening almost like a baby's bottom when they have a fungal infection. Maybe it's time to visit the vet on Monday (he'll probably think I'm mad and I must say I am beginning to think so too)

:( :( :(
i would be very careful about that my babies with canker one of them started to get red round his neck in till a lump on the side of his neck grew intill i found out it was canker i had no clue i would just be very carefull
 

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oh poor little guy, sure doesn't sound like the little one is thriving, i'm not sure why i suppose it could be alot of things, possible disease. i was hoping to hear from more of the members.
till we hear from others is it possible to slip in and extra feeding late at night for the little one.
maybe add a couple of drops of olive oil and probiotics to her diet
 

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Thank you for helping these doves. It sounds like you're doing a great job; as Terry mentioned, you may want to try some Enrofloxacin (Baytril/Cipro) as Paratyphoid often presents with symptoms such as the tiny baby has. I have a very small pigeon that I hand raised who was in the same situation--she didn't have paratyphoid, but was a tiny runt who did not grow for three months. Finally she grew a bit more and is now the size of a dove at a year old and healthy as can be. For a long time she was the scrawniest, tiniest squab. So they do have a chance :eek: even when they start out poorly. Have you tried this feeding method?
http://picasaweb.google.com/awrats3333/BabyFeeding#

They seem to pick it up very easily. Good luck and remember you're doing your best. Please feel free to ask any other questions you can think of.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thankyou very much for all your replies so far! It does make a difference to get advice and encouragement when you stand there trying your best every 2 hours struggling against the odds. That said, the bigger of the two is clearly thriving. Greedy, empties 2 syringes of slurp ;) in no time at all. Then back into his nest for a kip. The same can't be said for the little fellow though. When I took him in almost 6 days ago he weighed 47g. First his weight went up to 53g, then it dropped to 39g. Have him back up to 53 now, but he's increasingly struggling to keep halfway warm, I have the two in a tiny room with an oil-filled heater that makes the place feel like a sauna. I've noticed a bit of hardness like a pea just off centre on his throat above the crop. He brought up a little bit of feed just now and I can hear a slight 'bubbling' sound as he breathes. All that makes me think he may well be gone within the next few hours. It has been the weekend so I could not get any medication organised.

And the parents haven't come back either. So it's a sorry story. As hard as it may sound, I feel now that I may have been kinder to let nature take its course. He stood no chance of getting any more feed off his parents once his brother was twice his size. It might have been a quick exit for him then, instead he's had me poking about, coaxing and hassling him and yet he is still closer to death than to life.

Sorry I am wailing away. Am feeling pretty despondent.

Spok
 

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Thankyou very much for all your replies so far! It does make a difference to get advice and encouragement when you stand there trying your best every 2 hours struggling against the odds. That said, the bigger of the two is clearly thriving. Greedy, empties 2 syringes of slurp ;) in no time at all. Then back into his nest for a kip. The same can't be said for the little fellow though. When I took him in almost 6 days ago he weighed 47g. First his weight went up to 53g, then it dropped to 39g. Have him back up to 53 now, but he's increasingly struggling to keep halfway warm, I have the two in a tiny room with an oil-filled heater that makes the place feel like a sauna. I've noticed a bit of hardness like a pea just off centre on his throat above the crop. He brought up a little bit of feed just now and I can hear a slight 'bubbling' sound as he breathes. All that makes me think he may well be gone within the next few hours. It has been the weekend so I could not get any medication organised.

And the parents haven't come back either. So it's a sorry story. As hard as it may sound, I feel now that I may have been kinder to let nature take its course. He stood no chance of getting any more feed off his parents once his brother was twice his size. It might have been a quick exit for him then, instead he's had me poking about, coaxing and hassling him and yet he is still closer to death than to life.

Sorry I am wailing away. Am feeling pretty despondent.

Spok
all you can do is try, you did your best. can not fight mother nature sometimes. he may have something that can not be helped, otherwise with your good care he would of thrived.....so sorry.
 

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I am fed up with having people say i am off base.
I will give my opinion only when asked for it in a P.M.
I will than give my opinion. I am not new to this, and things do not change much over the years, even if people think so. Lovebirds, you are one of the sharpest people on this sight when it comes to "Animal Husbandry", that i have seen. my respects to you...HECK! even the hand feeding of feathered Squeeks, is blown up to a great science, WHICH it is not. Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
At the last feed late last night I had grave concerns for the little one because of the 'lump' that had come up on its neck and its 'noisy' breathing. This morning I found it had not made it through the night. I had become quite attached to it. So I am very sad. However, I will try and learn and move forward, firstly by taking on board all your valuable advice and get myself the necessary medication so that I am prepared should the same happen again. I am not sure though whether I will interfer ever again, trying to rescue a tiny squab that doesn't stand a chance against its sibling.

As to the sibling, well he seems to be doing fine, still very greedy and is putting on weight. Just one question though: I noticed this morning that there were quite a lot of white flecks on the sheet of kitchen paper he sits on. Looks a bit like dandruff. Is that some sort of mite attack?

Oh well, will solder on and hope that this is a tale with a happier ending. I'll post a picture if I can figure out how to do this.....

Thanks again for all your help. It's kept me going.

Spok x
 
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