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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello. Something like this was never meant to be my first post, but as luck would have it...

I picked up my feral pigeon from the vet today, after he spent the better part of three days at the animal hospital.

I was wondering if someone could help me with properly injecting antibiotics into the breast muscle of a pigeon. Monday, my rescued feral pigeon, was already given his meds this morning before I picked him up so I wasn't able to be given a proper tutorial, and the vet tech seemed kinda rushed. He showed me where to inject the medicine--to the left or right of the keel bone--but I'm not sure how far to push in the needle....

Would someone mind giving me a little assistance?

(I realize that this isn't an 'intravenous' injection... I can't seem to edit the title of the post ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
There is an 'infection'... that was about all that was said, other than the obvious, i.e. the broken wing (which is how I found him) and worms (par for the course). He also is displaying obvious neurological problems, which are extremely disconcerting to say the least.

I found him almost a month ago, and he was doing so well (as evidenced by the pictures in my album) and then suddenly on Monday he began acting rather badly (stumbling, disorientation, stopped preening and eating) so I took him in. He is now in even worse shape, and seeing him in such a horrible state is hard to bear. Though the vet seemed optimistic, so I suppose I should trust her (even though part of me is wondering if I was just scammed).

The antibiotic is Claforan to be administered intramuscularly twice a day.
 

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In order to administer it intramuscular, you really should have someone hold the bird for you, being the first time. If the doctor did not give specific instructions, then push the need into the muscle until you know for sure that it is in. Inject the amount the doctor instructed and then quickly pull the needle out.
If you pull it out slowly, you may see leakage from the injection site. Pulling it out quickly will allow the muscle to "Reseal" itself. You might still get some leakage, but do not worry about it. With practice, you will get it down pat. Massage the area GENTLY with very little pressure to seal the injection site just to be safe.
Believe me when I say the process will be quite a bit more unpleasant for you than it will for the bird. You'll do fine.
Also, please be very careful with the needle after the injection. Do not stick yourself (Or the person holding the bird :p ). Dispose of it properly by recapping the needle if you can, if you doubt your ability to recap it safely, place it n an old soda can and crush the can and throw it away. You do not want your garbage collector or the recycling person to get stuck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you so much for that, UncleBuck, it is sincerely appreciated. This makes me feel better about this process.

I will have to do it by myself, but I feel confident that the mix of my determination and his loopy state will provide a workable canvas.

As a side note, would I be able to blame some of Monday's disorientation and inability to function in any meaningful way on the pain killers? He has been given Albon and I will be continuing the dosage over the weekend. If I can find something to hang hope on tonight, I will feel much better about all of this... because at the moment this bird appears to be doing quite poorly.
 

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Dot, is it an avian vet you saw?

I don't have experience using Claforan on pigeons; antibiotics I usually give orally. For IM injections I usually put the bird on his back (make sure he doesn't have a crop full of fluid) and hold him with one hand while I part the feathers adjacent to the keel with the other hand, then inject (maybe about 1/4" deep) with an insulin syringe.

Could he have gotten into anything toxic?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Yes, it was actually a vet/clinic which I found listed here. I'm far less than impressed with them and am considering trying to find a second opinion, or at least someone who will spend a mere five minutes discussing the bird's health with me. The problem is, I'm now $500 into this bird in less than a month, and I just found this pigeon walking around the street and decided to bring it home to see how he did... there wasn't much thought put into it... and now I'm worried about coming up with the rent for the roof over both of our heads.

I doubt he got into anything toxic... though if he did, I'd hope that it might have been suggested at in the multiple blood tests, stool examinations, avian panels, etc. that were done to him... or am I being naive?

I don't know, I admit to being incredibly frustrated that Monday was at the hospital for the past three days and came home in far worse shape than when he went, and I don't have any information as to why or what to do... other than a bunch of needles in my freezer and a couple of vials on the counter.
 

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Can you call the clinic and ask the vet to give you a call back? (I realize they are probably closed now, but will the vet will be in tomorrow?) It's really unacceptable for you to not get your questions answered. At the very least, request copies of all his records/lab results so you can go over them yourself.

If he was ill enough for them to have admitted him, I'm also surprised they'd release him to you if he's actually worse now. (Although it's probably better for him to be with you than there if there's no one there to monitor him overnight/over the weekend.)

You mentioned pain killers. What were they, what dose, and do you know why? I'm wondering if it's possible he was overdosed on those.

What are his current symptoms? Are you hand feeding him or giving him fluids?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I will call tomorrow if he seems as bad then as he does now... this is just horrible to witness. It feels cruel. The best way I can describe it is that he appears to be extremely drunk and can't sit still... when he does sit still he pauses in this strange position where it seems like he is sitting upright on his 'butt', with his feet splayed out in front of him--like a sitting dog, or he lays in a horribly contorted pose with his tail bent out and his wings limply askew. He looks like he is dead when laying like this, which is unsettling. He can't walk and rather throws himself around in a very panicky way. I've found that I can calm him by letting him lay in my folded arms and look out of the window... he loved just sitting and looking out the window (and visiting with feral pigeons who came to the window) before this happened, and he seems comforted by the window now. He is able to track objects outside, and is generally curious about the happenings out there: this is making me feel better, I admit.

He is on Albon. The bottle directions are 0.16cc orally every 12 hours, but the syringes they gave me have marker at the 0.26ml measure on one, and at 0.16ml on the other... That is confusing. Does that imply that I am to taper the dosage on Sunday? Or have they been giving him 0.26ml, instead of 0.16ml? I am going to give him 0.16ml to be safe.

He is also on Metacam for worms.

I've been given the tools and substance to hand feed him, with the instructions from the vet tech that I count the droppings in the morning and at night, and whenever there are less than 10 droppings, I shove the tube down his poor throat.

I wasn't given any instructions re: water, but I gently dipped his beak into the water dish and he drank a few gulps.

Thank you for the conversation regarding this, it is making me feel calmer :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you so much for the help...

I just gave Monday his injection and it went extremely smoothly.
 

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I will call tomorrow if he seems as bad then as he does now... this is just horrible to witness. It feels cruel. The best way I can describe it is that he appears to be extremely drunk and can't sit still... when he does sit still he pauses in this strange position where it seems like he is sitting upright on his 'butt', with his feet splayed out in front of him--like a sitting dog, or he lays in a horribly contorted pose with his tail bent out and his wings limply askew. He looks like he is dead when laying like this, which is unsettling. He can't walk and rather throws himself around in a very panicky way. I've found that I can calm him by letting him lay in my folded arms and look out of the window... he loved just sitting and looking out the window (and visiting with feral pigeons who came to the window) before this happened, and he seems comforted by the window now. He is able to track objects outside, and is generally curious about the happenings out there: this is making me feel better, I admit.

He is on Albon. The bottle directions are 0.16cc orally every 12 hours, but the syringes they gave me have marker at the 0.26ml measure on one, and at 0.16ml on the other... That is confusing. Does that imply that I am to taper the dosage on Sunday? Or have they been giving him 0.26ml, instead of 0.16ml? I am going to give him 0.16ml to be safe.

He is also on Metacam for worms.

I've been given the tools and substance to hand feed him, with the instructions from the vet tech that I count the droppings in the morning and at night, and whenever there are less than 10 droppings, I shove the tube down his poor throat.

I wasn't given any instructions re: water, but I gently dipped his beak into the water dish and he drank a few gulps.

Thank you for the conversation regarding this, it is making me feel calmer :)

Think I'd find another vet. Can't believe they sent you home without fully understanding what was wrong with the bird, or exactly what to do for it. And BTW, Metacam is an anti-inflamatory. It's for pain.
 

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Also, you said that if there were less then 10 droppings, you tube feed him. Couldn't that also mean that the crop isn't working properly? That the food isn't passing through? If that were the case, then you wouldn't just keep feeding him.
 

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I sent you an email with my contact information and perhaps if we talk, I can help you sort this out.
I'm interested in what kind of worming medicine you are givng Monday. Some of them can make the birds very ill...even kill them. I'm wondering if the vet gave you Fenbendazole. If so do not give Monday any more of it. My experience is that it makes Pigeons very sick.
As Jay3 said, Metacam is not a wormer. If the dose is too strong, that can make Monday act loopy too.
 

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Metacam's a pain medication. Dosage is really small (like a few drops). I think I would stop that if it were me.

I'd call the vet to request a copy of the records at the very least. You have a right to those, and they will help you understand what might be going on with him.

The dose of Albon I use for coccidia is .10 ml once a day for 5 days.

I'm wondering if Monday's symptoms are related to PMV. Do you know if they tested for that?

Jennifer
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
It makes me feel better that I am confused because I have bad information and possibly bad medicine rather than just being an idiot.

I was given Claforan, Albon, and Metacam. I know the Clarofan is the antibiotic because it is the loaded syringes in the freezer. Everyone was rushing me out of the office and I wasn't given proper instructions regarding the other two meds... though I was told one was for worms and one was a painkiller--they gave me syringes with marker on them for each, but as I stated before: the syringes for Albon have two significantly different dosages marked off. I thought that the painkiller was for the weekend, and Googled 'Albon' to see it referenced as a painkiller, and that left Metacam as the worm medication.

What a mess...
 

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It makes me feel better that I am confused because I have bad information and possibly bad medicine rather than just being an idiot.

I was given Claforan, Albon, and Metacam. I know the Clarofan is the antibiotic because it is the loaded syringes in the freezer. Everyone was rushing me out of the office and I wasn't given proper instructions regarding the other two meds... though I was told one was for worms and one was a painkiller--they gave me syringes with marker on them for each, but as I stated before: the syringes for Albon have two significantly different dosages marked off. I thought that the painkiller was for the weekend, and Googled 'Albon' to see it referenced as a painkiller, and that left Metacam as the worm medication.

What a mess...
I'm sorry, but think you're mistaken. Albon is for coccidiosis, and other bacterial infections. Metacam for pain. Maybe you could look it up again. Neither metacam nor albon is for worms.
 

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It makes me feel better that I am confused because I have bad information and possibly bad medicine rather than just being an idiot.

I was given Claforan, Albon, and Metacam. I know the Clarofan is the antibiotic because it is the loaded syringes in the freezer. Everyone was rushing me out of the office and I wasn't given proper instructions regarding the other two meds... though I was told one was for worms and one was a painkiller--they gave me syringes with marker on them for each, but as I stated before: the syringes for Albon have two significantly different dosages marked off. I thought that the painkiller was for the weekend, and Googled 'Albon' to see it referenced as a painkiller, and that left Metacam as the worm medication.

What a mess...
Claforan is an antiobiotic, Albon is also an antiobiotic, Metacam is a pain reliever.

Let's keep it going here and get this straightened out for you if we can. Thank you so much for helping this pigeon!

Terry
 

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It is straightened out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Thank you so much for all of the responses... I spoke to Charis on the telephone this evening and she gave me a lot of valuable information as well as hope for Monday's future.

Thank you so much, again... I feel much, much better about all of this and have a more concrete understanding of what we are dealing with.
 
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