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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I think I need a bit of advice on a sick pigeon I have. I found her when she was very young, probably only 2 weeks or so old. I successfully raised her, without any problems till now. She is now maybe 3 months old or so. She flies really well, and has done so for a while, but still squeaks instead of cooing.
A couple of days ago I noticed she was not well; sitting still with puffed up feathers and diarrhoea, she also drank heaps and therefore produced a lot of wetness in her droppings. I took her to a vet, who did a faecal smear. He did not find any bad bacteria, but he did think he found an excess of yeast. He therefore prescribed nilstat drops to treat this. He also prescribed doxycyclin, however, I am really not sure about that, as the only basis he used to prescribe this to her was that he asked me if she had sneezed lately. When I said that she had sneezed a couple of times in the past days, he instantly diagnosed that as being chlamydia, without running any tests for it, or without having heard her sneeze himself at all.

Now my questions are these:
- Should I be giving her the doxycyclin? If she already has a yeast infection, that can't be good for her.. That, combined with the (in my opinion) doubtful way he diagnosed the chlamydia makes me wonder if I maybe should not do it.
- How long will it take for the nilstat to start working? She is really very ill. She does not eat anymore by herself (but at least still drinks), and is extremely listless, just sits there with puffed up feathers. I hand feed her with a granivore rearing mix, but she is increasingly reluctant to take it.
- Should I treat her for canker? The vet said he did not think she had it, but did not run any tests for it either. He only based that on the fact that she does not have the canker growths in her throat. But the symptoms could also point to canker I think. She also vomited a couple of times, although this far that had only been as a response to me giving her the nilstat.

The vet is a bird vet, but experience in the past with other birds has made me doubt how good a bird vet he actually is - for example he put a splint on a bird with a broken leg, but the splint fell off on the evening of the same day he put it on. The really good bird vet who I found a little while ago is away at the moment. (this bird is the companion of the bird I posted about a little while ago splay-leg-in-baby-95241)

Photo of bird is attached. I just cleaned her cage, so will try to take a photo of some droppings later.
 

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We had a squeaker pigeon with circovirus who had a series of infections...canker, yeast, staph, malaria, aspergillosis...each time the vet treated one, another surfaced because she had no immune system. Her main symptoms were respiratory, white and yellow throat growths, not eating, and watery green poop. She alsovomited food. I hope your bird does not have this. We have all our birds tested now for circovirus. I hope your bird improves rapidly with good care. Please keep your bird warm. I hope she is all better soon.
 

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Same symptoms as a dove I'm treating right now for canker and yeast. Give Nystatin twice daily: morning and evening for 5 - 7 days. Works best on an empty crop, so no food for the next hour. For canker you can give 50 mg of metronidazole once daily for 7 - 10 days, sometimes for 14 days for stubborn canker. Try to get the 100 mg tablets, just split in half and pop into his mouth. Canker does not always show in the mouth, so he might as well have that.

I've noticed the dove used to vomit seeds when she started getting sick. But not when I fed handrearing formula to her. You will need to get food into your pigeon. Best will be to forcefed defrosted peas, at least 30 3 times daily. Hold the bird on your lap facing to the right (if you are righthanded). Reach with your lefthand over the head and open the beak. Use your righthand to put one pea at a time into his mouth over the tongue and let him swallow. If he spits it out, you're not putting the pea in deep enough.

He will also benefit from apple cider vinegar in the drinking water: 5 ml to 1 l of water. Probiotics into the drinking water will also help.

Also keep him warm. If you don't have a heatpad, an lightbulb hanging down into the corner of his cage will supply heat. Just make sure there's enough room for him to move away if too hot. Also a brick for him to perch on.

There's usually an improvement after 3 days, sometimes it takes longer. Let us know how he's doing. And pigeons do sneeze from time to time, I won't give other meds now. First try the above.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the advice Marina B. I am handfeeding her already with granivore rearing mix, which should be a complete feed, and should also be quite easy on the digestive system.

I have not given her any doxycycline at this stage, only nilstat. I have left 30 min between nilstat dose and feeding, but will increase that to an hour. I do not have metronidazole, but do have ronivet, so will treat her with that for canker. I just hope she will start to improve soon, as this far, even with nilstat, she has only been getting worse.

I started with apple cider vinager in the water yesterday, so will continue with that. I don't have probiotics for birds, but have been adding small doses of a natural, unsweetened, yoghurt to her food.

I don't think she needs heat - it is 25-30 degrees C here during the day at the moment. Would she still need a heatpad?
 

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Try to get the metronidazole, it works best and is easy to give to pigeons. Do you put the ronivet in the drinking water? He might not be getting the right dose then.

Supply additional heat. When they are sick, they can't regulate their temperature and should be kept warm when sick. What does the droppings look like?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I have not had very good experiences with metronidazole - that is flagyl, isn't it? I used it for a while and treated a bird successfully with it (60mg/day), however, I think lately there has been a surge in resistance to it. It has been pretty much useless for a while now here, and every bird I treated with it lately has been pretty much non-responsive. If I then switched them to ronivet they recovered quickly... I do not add the ronivet to the water. I work out dosages and dilutions, and give the bird the required dose manually each day (based on body-weight). Seems to work quite well, and have had very good results with it in the past.

I'll supply a heating pad. I suppose then she does not have to use it, but she can if she wants to.

I have a photo of droppings, I'll see if I can upload it. Still quite liquid.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Not a great shot, but you can see some of her droppings. The seed that is lying around is just a bit of spillage, it is not part of her droppings.
 

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Marina has given great advice, the only thing I would add, is that canker often makes them vomit.

The reason the Metro hasn't worked for you lately is probably that sometimes a resistant canker will need 2 different meds used together to treat. Could be what is going around.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The little birdie has not gotten any worse, but at this stage is not getting better either... will continue with treatment..
 

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Ronivet is ronidizole, so it will work for canker.
If it were me, I would treat for canker and coccidia. I use Albon for coccidia. If you can't get albon, you can usually get Sulmet at feed and grain stores.
The three most common bird ailments are canker, worms and coccidia.
 
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