Pigeon-Talk banner

1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am desperate for any help for a feral pigeon called Flecky. She’s one of the flock of feral pigeons we feed and look after at our house.
She was one of the most extrovert and alive personalities in the flock – used to climb up the mesh of our front gate waiting for food.

Her mate Copper disappeared overnight on 12 September 2016 – presumably taken by a goshawk or falcon on his short flight back to the nest from our garden. She was left to raise their 2 week old chics solo in our neighbours stainless steel gutter. We put seed and water up in containers for her there for the next few weeks to help her feed them and she raised them successfully.

After that she looked lonely and “lost” – sitting around on her own, or with her 2 young offspring on the neighbours gutter. The male from her previous chics started to try and woo her and was around her a lot. She stopped joining the flock on the lawn and would come to the side of the house near our door. I started feeding her there and then saw she wasn’t picking up the bigger seed to eat – would peck and drop it. I gave her smaller seed and she ate that but would walk away without a fight when others come for it. Something was wrong.

We managed to give her 3 days of a Dovabiotics (doxycycline tablet) and then 2 days of its equivalent in water. No real improvement.

The following week I happened to see one of her poops and it had neon green colour in the urates. So we caught her and I took her to the vet on 11 November. Gist of the next 2 weeks:

11 Nov: vet did a blood smear and found malaria so put her on primaquine: ¾ tablet a day for 2 days and then 1x/wk for next 3 weeks.

14 Nov: 2nd vet visit: repeated blood smear and the malaria had decreased; did a faecal flotation. Given enrovet (generic of baytril), nystacid, medizole,

No real change.

18 Nov: 3rd vet visit: blood smear, crop smear, xray. Possibility of something in the crop ?? some metal or dark. Given sodium calcium edetate re metal, anti fungal syrup re some thrush. Malaria had increased again, so given more primaquine.
It seemed like a lot of meds so I stopped the medizole. The antifungal syrup replaced the nystacid

All this time she still wasn’t eating properly – would peck and drop; not eating bigger seed like corn or peas, just some small stuff. She hadn’t preened at all since 9 November since we caught her and put her in the large cage. Her poop kept changing but still had green tinge to the urates, sometimes watery.

I tried any combination and type of seed I could think of. One day she ate some sunflowers seeds, another some granules for handrearing birds, another day some linseed – and then later that day I saw her heave and she had bits of green splashed on her left hand side of her head – and she looked “green” and more off colour. I took her to the vet the next day on the 23 Nov – she hadn’t eaten anything that morning and I decided to “let her be” and to stop the meds. The vet had offered to do a barium meal to see if there was blockages in her digestion, but we decided not to that. She gave her a B12 and she expected her to die within a few days.

She didn’t – but she was losing more weight. About 80g of her 300 g at the first visit.

Still she didn’t eat much – it was like she was looking for something in all the seed and she wasn’t finding it.

I put her outside amongst the flock every day, in the sun and she looks and pecks but eats very little. At night we put an infra red light in her cage for warmth. I give her some heptonic and some homeopathic drops to support her liver; and probiotics and vitamins in her water.

We took her to a local pigeon fancier who gave us a few IDEAL tablets to see if that helped - they seem to blast her guts out so we stopped after 2 days.

Since then her poop which is now very runny , seems sour.

Yesterday we put a fresh bit of brown bread in her cage (amongst the other seed) – and she ate a lot of it like a starved bird.
Today she wasn’t interested in the bread, and I also tried a bit of cooked brown rice in her cage – and she ate a fair bit of that.

We let her outside her cage in a room each day too. When not trying to peck, she often just stand puffed up. Her sternum now shows.

But she is just fading away – despite plenty of variety of seed and food.
It seems like there is an unseen “enemy” - that nothing we have tried to treat has helped. Its just been a gradual decline.

Its not that she has stopped eating – she looks and pecks everyday – but doesn’t seem to find in all the variety the “something” that she eats enough of and consistently. Maybe its nausea, or she has felt sick from weeks ago?

Her poop is now runny and smells strange – like sour?

Any suggestions or help?? We are just trying to keep her hydrated, with food and warm.
Thanks !
sunbirdy2
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
You should be hand feeding her. Can you get frozen peas there? Or cook green peas till they are soft? Is she pooping as much as she takes in? Is her crop emptying? You haven't treated her for canker?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,574 Posts
Hope she improves with TLC. Thank you for helping her. I assume the vet already checked her mouth for canker and yeast and her poop for parasites like cocci. If she had malaria I worry about an immune problem like our squeaker Chloe had. Please try the peas that Jay3 suggested and let us know how she is doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
You can't assume that the vet already checked for canker. Besides, that was a while ago, and could have it now. The sour smell does go with canker. Also, when down with another illness, bird often comes down with canker because the system is stressed.
Would cover my bases and treat for canker. Metronidazole, 50 mg once daily for 10 days.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Jay3 and cwebster

We did check her throat for canker at various times and again this morning. When the vet did the crop smear they didn't pick up canker - that was on the 18 Nov, so about 2 weeks ago now.

Her crop seems to be emptying as it feels empty this morning. It hasn't been very full as she hardly eats much but she did eat a fair bit of rice yesterday. The poop is very runny and stills smells "sour" ( I think that would be the word to describe it).

Forgot to add in - even before we caught her on 9th Nov she hadn't been herself for at least 2 weeks. When the other birds scattered for a goshawk, she wouldn't fly with the flock, she hid on the ground. She was only flying to and from her next at the neighbours and down for food.

Also her beak has got lighter - vet said it could be from "anaemia of chronic disease"

its seems her whole system was flattened after the loss of her mate and then raising the chicks solo, even with the help off all the seed up in the gutter to make it easier for her.

She was on Medizole for a few days from the 14 Nov - which does treat for canker. I can try using that powder again in her drinking water.

It seems she is looking for bland food - like the bread and cooked brown rice. We did have fresh peas and corn for her to try as well and she didn't eat them. I will try to hand feed her some.

Obviously she is jut getting weaker and weaker. And I wonder if all the meds she had hasn't made put her liver /system under too much strain too.

thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,453 Posts
Medicines in drinking water is no good, cause you can't really tell how much they are actually getting into their system. Meditrich tablets from medpet works quite well for canker. I buy from Diamond pigeon stud in Kimberley (053 831 2619) and they can speedpost to you. In the meantime, lots of apple cider vinegar in her drinking water (usually 5 ml to 1 l water) but I would go for 7.5 to 10 ml rather in this case.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Marina B

We have the Medpet 4-in-one and the Ronsec that cover canker. I have been putting some ACV into the water. I also put in probiotics and vitamins - can one put all of them together?

I wish I could figure out WHY she isn't eating normally. She has had so much seed available - and we've tried variety to try and see what she pecks at - but this is just a mystery. No clear pattern to any of this even after 4 weeks . Fading away surrounded by food??? Could the green poop and lost of water and the smell be "starvation" in the midst of food available?

I put fresh peas and corn in her cage as well today - but she doesn't touch them.
thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,453 Posts
Medpet 4 in 1 is no good to treat disease, it's just a general antibiotic. I've tried Ronsec once, but it did not cure canker in the dove I was treating. Meditrich did however. You can add the acv, probiotics and vitamins all together in the drinking water. Bright green poop is a sign of starvation. Does she drink a lot of water? Another sign that she might have canker.

Now she won't eat the peas by herself, you will have to forcefeed her.

Put her on your lap facing to the right (if you are righthanded). Cover her body and head with your lefthand, gently open her mouth with the lefthand fingers and put the pea in her mouth over the tongue with your righthand. If she spits it out, you're not putting it in deep enough. It's quite easy once you get the hang of it. Peas are recommended cause they are easy to feed and to digest. 40 to 50 peas 3 times daily.

I would really order the Meditrich, it's a good med to have around in case for future use. You must have spend a fortune on this bird already, another couple of bucks might just save it's life.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,453 Posts
And while you wait for the Meditrich, continue with the acv etc fresh every day in the drinking water. Also put her outside in a little cage, they always perks up when outside in the sun.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thanks

Her poop is more like an light olive green (or kharki range) now with a lot of fluid and little white - it has changed so much over the past 4 weeks but has mostly been some shade of green and variety of green tinge to the urates and fluid . I read on various sites that green urates is an indication of liver disease? the vet said initially it could be liver or blood breakdown - and so they checked the blood smear and found the malaria. They didn't ever check for liver disease. Pity.

Yes she is drinking more water but seems it is mostly when I give her water to drink and not drinking herself much from what I can see.

She does get outside in the sun with the others during the day - I think it also helps to keep her warm as she has lost a lot of muscle mass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
As was mentioned the bird needs the Metronidazole. 4 in 1's don't work. You can't always see canker in their throat. A few days of canker med don't work either.
How can you watch the bird starve and not feed her the peas. Here is how to do that.

If you need to feed peas to a pigeon, hold the bird on your lap and against your body. This gives you more control. Reach from behind his head with one hand and grasp his beak on either side. Now use your free hand to open the beak, and put a pea in, then push it to the back of his throat and over his tongue. Let him close his beak and swallow. Then do another. It gets easier with practice, and the bird also gets more used to it, and won't fight as much. If you can't handle the bird, then use the sleeve cut off a t-shirt, slip it over his head and onto his body, with his head sticking out. This will stop him from being able to fight you so much. Just don't make it tight around his crop area. It helps if you have him facing your right side if you are right handed.

Wouldn't hurt to treat for Cocci either. Cocci Med, you can give once, then again 10 days later.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,453 Posts
Are you keeping her warm at night as well? Try to get a heatpad for reptiles from a petshop, it works well. Just put layers of fabric on top cause it can get fairly hot over time and make sure there's space for her to move away if too hot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Yes we keep her warm with an infra red light at night and for as long as it takes for her to start being active in the morning. She has space to move close to or further from the light as she needs.

A question re the Meditrich:
The info says: Metronidazole is not water soluable and causes severe regurgitation if dosed in its pure form - the unique "Medpet cellulose coating" of the Metronidazole tablet overcomes both these problems.

Most of the Medpet products say 1 tablet for a 400 - 500g bird. Flecky was 220g last week and probably less now. So then it seems she would need half a tablet BUT then cutting the tablet in half breaks this outer coating. Is that ok or is that a no-no??

Does it have to be fed on a full crop?? The Ronsec says that on the bottle and I don't yet have the Meditrich bottle to see if it says the same. I will get it today by l lunch time I hope..

I get the impression that the Ronsec (which I have) is a stronger med as it says for hyper-resistant Trich, so why then is the Metronidazole recommended?

re the peas - have just been reluctant as a previous bird we hand fed peas to when it was sick and not eating ended up regurging a few after a while and it wasn't a nice experience. But will try this morning. She ate brown rice again last night.

She seems to be doing a thing where she stretches her neck up a bit as if she is trying/struggling to swallow - its not when she is trying to eating. Sometimes after drinking water but even when she is resting under the light at night I saw her doing it last night. Hope the peas don't get stuck.

thanks for all the advice - really appreciate it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I did start giving her Nystacid again for the past 3 days re thrush when her poop starting smelling sour. We were given that initially from the vet but stopped when they changed the meds and gave anti-fungal to put into the water.

I do have Coximed - should I half the tablet re her now being half the bodyweight of a healthy pigeon?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
Yes we keep her warm with an infra red light at night and for as long as it takes for her to start being active in the morning. She has space to move close to or further from the light as she needs.

A question re the Meditrich:
The info says: Metronidazole is not water soluable and causes severe regurgitation if dosed in its pure form - the unique "Medpet cellulose coating" of the Metronidazole tablet overcomes both these problems.

It doesn't cause severe regurgitation. They say that to make their coated product seem more needed. It can sometimes cause vomiting, but not always. They will vomit more often if given on n empty crop, so it is better to feed first to get something into the crop first. Also if there is still vomiting, we use a few drops of Pepto Bismul here about 30 minutes before and that works well. But as long as you feed first, it isn't usually needed.

Most of the Medpet products say 1 tablet for a 400 - 500g bird. Flecky was 220g last week and probably less now. So then it seems she would need half a tablet BUT then cutting the tablet in half breaks this outer coating. Is that ok or is that a no-no??

The dosage of Metro for an adult pigeon is normally 50 mg once daily for 7 to 10 days, so I would start with the one tablet, then cut them in half for an average adult. and 25 to 30 mg. once daily for a squeaker. AT your birds weight, I would start with 1/2 tablet, then shave a bit off 1/2 tablet to make it 30 to 40 mg.

Does it have to be fed on a full crop?? The Ronsec says that on the bottle and I don't yet have the Meditrich bottle to see if it says the same. I will get it today by l lunch time I hope..

I get the impression that the Ronsec (which I have) is a stronger med as it says for hyper-resistant Trich, so why then is the Metronidazole recommended?

You can't believe everything they put on the med bottles. Some say that they cure canker in one dose, and that doesn't happen. Some say 3 days, and that isn't long enough either. Metronidazole is usually very effective, on occasion if the canker is very stubborn, it may take 2 different meds. That is when I would add the Ronsec. But usually Metro is enough.

re the peas - have just been reluctant as a previous bird we hand fed peas to when it was sick and not eating ended up regurging a few after a while and it wasn't a nice experience. But will try this morning. She ate brown rice again last night.

If a bird vomited up the warmed peas, then it probably would have vomited up anything else you fed it. It probably vomited because of being sick, or the med. The peas are normally easy to digest.


She seems to be doing a thing where she stretches her neck up a bit as if she is trying/struggling to swallow - its not when she is trying to eating. Sometimes after drinking water but even when she is resting under the light at night I saw her doing it last night. Hope the peas don't get stuck.

That is because she can feel it in her throat. That is common with canker. Just because you can't see the canker doesn't mean it isn't there. It could be deeper in her throat. Sometimes if you look way down the throat with a flashlight, you can see it. Sometimes not. Unless there is a blockage in the crop from the canker, then peas should be no problem.

thanks for all the advice - really appreciate it.
...............................
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,453 Posts
The tablets are easy to cut with a sharp knife. You can cut one into smaller pieces and give her the right amount piece by piece deep down into her mouth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
I did start giving her Nystacid again for the past 3 days re thrush when her poop starting smelling sour. We were given that initially from the vet but stopped when they changed the meds and gave anti-fungal to put into the water.

I do have Coximed - should I half the tablet re her now being half the bodyweight of a healthy pigeon?
I would just give the whole tablet. If you under-dose, it can help the cocci to build up a resistance to the drug. You're only giving it one time, and then once in ten days. Shouldn't hurt her. I wouldn't give it while giving the Metro. I usually give one Coximed, then the next day, treat for the 10 days with Metro, then give the other cocci.
But because it really seems to be canker, I would this time just treat for canker and wait on the Coximed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
369 Posts
How old is this bird?
Does this bird have unlimited access to grit or pickstones?
And I wasn't clear on what the x-ray showed, was there a dark spot in the crop?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,795 Posts
Thank you Jr Brown. I either missed or forgot about the xray that was mentioned. So went back and looked. The spot in the crop could have been as simple as grit, or could have been something that would cause a blockage. Sometimes they eat some pretty surprising things, and it blocks off the crop so things don't pass through.
Maybe another xray to see what's going on with that. If there is something in there that is blocking, then formula would be better than the peas. The skins can get caught if it is being blocked off. Even baby food peas or cereal, or something without the skins. What did the vet think about the spot in the crop? Can you feel anything in there if you gently palpate the crop? Be careful though, as if it does have something in there, it could be something sharp. Don't want to cause her crop any damage.
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top