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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone this is my first post! Ive been reading threads on this site to help me with my 2 pigeons but now i have a more detailed question that i trust many experienced pigeon owners would know how to answer, plus ive been meaning to register here for a while now.

Anyway, about a month or so ago i found 2 baby pigeons , about 5 days old, on my balcony. I had moved a lot of stuff around and my toddler daughter was very loud on the balcony so i assume i scared the mom and dad off or something bc i watched those babies for almost 2 days and the parents didn't come back. My neighbor had found a few day old dead pigeon on her balcony so refusing to let these 2 babies to end the same way i took them in. I love animals and will help any in need, but I've never had birds before so while the dire need to help was there the knowledge of what i was doing wasn't. I fed them often with this bottle contraption made for baby pigeons i saw on YouTube and it worked well. I had bird supplement n vitamin powder id add to their mush n they loved it. Until they started to get their feathers n started looking like pigeons (about 2 weeks old) i kept them in a roomy cage in a warm area n would only take them out for feedings. When they got dirty in the mush food id clean them off w a tissue or wet paper towel. When id cone in the room they would start squeaking and flapping their wings , running & fighting to get to my hand and bottle. After i got them eating seeds well on their own and drinking water id take them out one at a time or both to hang out for hours at a time with me n my bf . they would sit on a towel on my lap , sleeping, preening... When i would reach in to get them they would squeak n flap their wings n run to me. The only thing id do that they didnt like were baths every 3 days. But i only gave them 3baths before they jumped into a bowl of water one day n took a bath themselves. After that i didn't give them baths myself. I moved them into a much bigger cage, a big dog cage i can easily fit into. I put in bricks to perch on n trim their nails. Bird toys. 2 branches to fly onto. A basket. Everything was going great. They seemed perfectly happy.

Then one day i was doing research on pigeon care and came across feather lice .... N what the signs were. I looked up how to check for them. I opened the ones wing n looked behind a light.... I could see 3 little lice moving thru the feathers. I got SO skeeved out!! I needed to deal w this problem. NOW! It was midnight and it couldnt wait till the next day when id have time to treat them ... I read several people say they used cat flea shampoo on their pigeons or other birds. Supposedly the ingredient (pyl-something) in that is also in bird shampoo. I had a bottle of cat flea shampoo in my closet. The ingredient was one of 2 n was the main one. The several people who wrote that they used it said it worked great.. I made the decision to try it, but to use very little. I really hope that wasnt an awful n cruel move.They didn't like the bath but it was fairly quick n after they were dry they seemed fine, their skin wasn't irritated or anything...but they still had a few lice. Less but some. I went to the store n bought another treatment, which seemed to work great. All were gone. They were almost always out of the cage and so i started looking up ways to deal with their poop. It was too much! Every 5 minutes! Omg! At this point ive been putting down sheets n towels where they would sit n wipe them off every ten min or so. I was hoping for a better option. So pigeon pants - bird diapers, flight suits, whatever they r called lol - seemed wonderful. It took me 2 days before i found a store near me that carry them n went to get them. When i got home i started to introduce them to my pigeons but when i put them on they didnt seem to like them. I figured each day a few minutes wearing it they will get used to them, which they have. They still try to pick at it but they can fly in them fine.

So why do i think they do not like me?.

When i used to go near the cage or theyd hear my voice they would flap their wings n squeak n run around. They were fine w being picked up. Now when i put my hand in the cage, the boy -Squeaker - runs to me n tries to get food from my hand but the girl -Bowzer- runs away n tries to bite if i try to pick her up in it. When i talk to them when they r in the cage squeaker just continues doing what hes doing but bowzer squeaks and lightly flaps her wings as they r folded. If i leave the cage open they will come out together n sit on the top of it or the chair nearby or tge windowsill next to the cage. If i try to pick them up they run away or fly to the other side , squeaking. If i am holding one n not the other, they will fly away back to each other.

They only seem to like me when id take them outside. Up until a week ago they could fly as well as a chicken so taking them to a little field near by was fine. They wouldnt leave me for a second anyway. If i put them down they fly up on me pretty fast. I took squeaker w me to a friends house n he stayed on my shoulder all night. I haven't been taking bowzer out since she won't come out of the cage i carry them in for the last week. But if i take her out into the hallway w me or the bathroom, she will fly up on my head or shoulder n not let go.

I think they dislike me bc i treated them for lice twice in a 2 day period. Bc i started them wearing pigeon pants (for several min a day for 5 days then after they were fine i had them on maybe 3 times each time about an hr). Bc i take them out too much. I think maybe the lice plus pants stressed them out. Esp bc they r only about 5 -6 weeks old. They just started flying well about a week ago n when they r at home n exploring the area by the cage they never come to me. If i pick them up they fly right off. The girl bit me once when i tried to take her out. The boy seems to trust me more but still won't let me pick him up if he's out of the cage at the apt.

Am i just overreacting? Or r they mad at me? Did i stress them out too much? What can i do to repair our relationship? Ive been trying to just leave bowzer alone but she still squeaks n flaps when she sees my hands or hears my voice.

Please help me! I love these 2 pigeons, they really got me out of a long rut n perhaps i dove so much into taking care of them that i hurt them? I want them to love me or at least know i don't ever want to hurt them!

Thank u for reading this very very long post.

Kate.
 

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Hi Kate,
Thank you for writing this long post. :)
I loved your two baby pigeons and how you cared for them. Pigeons are actually territorial inside their cages, my cock and his boy both peck me when I try to put my hand in their cage for feed and water because they treat it as intruder so nothing wrong if one of them or both peck you there.
For outside the cage may be they have some unpleasant experience with you and that made them a bit scared. Once I gave my cock a bath when he jumped into oil pan so it took some time to get oil off etc but after that he was so scared of me, he used to run away if I approach him while before that he was very tame. So I gave him time, fed him by my hand, hold him and pet him (but never if he didn't will) so now again he is the same tamed cock as was before.

So for you I suggest if they are weaned now, don't give them seed in bowl, feed them by your hand, keep feed in your hand and let them pick it. If they run away from you, don't chase and catch them without their will but call them with feed and they will come to you. Let them take bath in water bowls and don't give them a forceful bath. When they come to you hold them with love, kiss them, fuss them and pet them. My pigeons sleep in my lap when I pet them over head and they feel very relaxed.
So your love will be felt but a little patience. Call them sweetly and talk to them and never hold them without/site against their will. Hope it all works in your case.
We have few very experienced members with baby pigeons here, I will look for their responses for more guidance.
Till then enjoy these adorable babies. Thanks for sharing such a nice sweet story, loved it. Thank you... :)

P. S I forgot to mention that I wouldn't let them out in Park because they are young and may not be that good at flying yet so if they fly away out of fear of anything, may be they don't come back and become an easy target of predators. So be careful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi kiddy! Thank u for the reply and advice! I feel a bit betterknowing that its normal for them to be territorial of their cage. As for feeding them I have been with my hand n squeaker will jump up onto my arm n eat from my hand while bowzer is much more difficult to feed now. I have been giving them some space but I know they r still upset. How long until ur boy got over the bath experience? & why is it that if they r with me somewhere they don't know they won't leave my shoulder or hand but when at home they fly away? A friend suggested that may be they r scared of me leaving them outside or abandoning them? Before they could really fly id take them outside n put them down n start walking away so they would practice flying n fly to me. Ever time id walk away they panic n run/fly to me. Idk but I w an't to repair our relationship so ill take ur advice. N I haven't been taking them outside for a week now except to my parents house n once to q friends house. Thank u again!

Kate<3
 

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It is very normal Kate. They know their place when they are home so they aren't bothered to stick with you for safety but when you go out they no nothing except you and to you they know very well so they don't go anywhere else leaving you. Since they have been in house since they were kids they fear of going out being everything new.
My pigeons live with me in my room and they roam around everywhere even jump up and down off my shoulder but when I take them to my own terrace (which they see from window) they do not leave my shoulder because they know very well that they are safe with me.
Pigeons are very intelligent.
For my cock I didn't do much efforts, I just let him the way he wanted and gradually over the time he became as he was. Yes I would give him some time and when he would come to me I try petting him lightly, never made any sudden movements to act like predators etc and he understood my care.

Good point is you have his tamed sibling so when he comes try to pet him and love him and so the other may feel jealous.
For outside actually they are too young and if they fly out of some terror, may be you aren't able to get them back. This is not right time to fly them free.

All in all, you raised them and they know you very well so it won't take much efforts, just a little patience and care and love which they can feel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah u r right I wont be taking them out anymore. Maybe when they r older and r ok w being on a leash... ? thank u for ur advice & I hope to have them more affectionate soon. im glad to know they must feel safe w me if they stick to my side when we r not in the apartment. that makes me feel better. thanks again!
 

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Pigeons are homely bodies actually, they like to stay at their imprinted areas, their territories for safety. Outside they don't feel comfortable unless they are flown at regular basis like fanciers do. But that too from the same area they have been living in because they will return their homes after flying because they imprint on that . Homer pigeon is the only breed which comes back no matter where you leave them. So it is not recommended to take them out openly without cage or anything coz if they see any predator and fly out of fear they won't be able to come back. If you like to open them, fly them at regular basis to make them used to flying in open (from your house only) but if you keep them in house with you they will be comfortably living in your house for life long. Taking them in parks and all like other pets e.g. Dogs, cats or bunny isn't right in pigeons case because if other pets run away out of fear of something you can catch them but you can't chase and catch flying birds . also birds are quite different from other pets. I have felt myself helpless when my fledgling flew and wasn't returning and with my all efforts I wasn't able to get him back. He was flying so high and good I could never catch him.
So keep them safe with you and don't let them open and free fly. There are methods of flying them if you want I can tell you but that is from the area where they are living in and not from any new areas they are not known to.

Hope you will enjoy them with the same understanding.
 

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I'm sure the baths and diapers didn't help much, but pigeons as they grow up do change. They normally don't really like being picked up and snuggled. Some do, but most don't. They like to come to you. So feed from your hand, and offer treats that they like from your hand. And don't chase or grab them, or they will be on guard that you will do that.
Not sure how you know which is the boy and which is the girl, as they may surprise you when older.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Jay, at first i thought squeaker was a girl and bowzer a boy, it was just a guess really. but now that they r getting bigger i think bowzys a girl and squeakers a boy bc bowzy is more feminine i guess? shes smaller, and smoother, and looks very ...feminine lol.. and squaker is bigger and rougher looking , their heads are different shapes and their bodies look diff but u r right they prolly will surprise me! its really just a guess but i feel like im right. maybe they r both girls or both boys, who knows!!
 

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I can usually tell with mine when they are young, but I have been surprised too. LOL.
 
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