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Hello. I have not been on this forum for a while, as I thought the issue might improve with the "big" molt, but it seems to have worsened.

My bird Curie (probably male, only coos before storms but has never laid an egg) has always had problems with the feathers on his wings. When I got him over a year ago, he had a little gray blood feather he kept picking at. I figured the handling/stress from the pet shop was a likely cause, and figured it would improve.

Fast forward a few months, and he had begun picking at his flight feathers a lot. The first time I noticed bleeding, I took him to a general vet (we have no avian vet here, so I called all the vets in the area to see which was more comfortable with birds), where they pulled out a few broken feathers on each wing, all the broken feathers they could find. I could tell it was really painful for him, and I hated watching it. When we got home, I realized he no longer trusted me as much as he used to.

Unfortunately, he kept on picking after that, and when I asked on here, someone suggested that once he has his first big molt, the feathers are likely to grow back fine. Suggestions were also made to get him a mate, which I could not do at the time because of my building's policies on pets. I started giving him Prime's Vitamin, Mineral and Amino Acid Supplement in his water at least once a week (the only thing I could find at my local pet shop), and began to look online for something to help him, but was always scared off by questionable ingredients and wildly varying testimonials. I waited for the big molt and hoped things would improve.

Now I think the molt has passed (hard to tell as he molts pretty often anyway) and he has maybe one flight feather left, most of them constantly being plucked out by the time they reach a third their normal length. He can no longer gain any altitude in flight, sometimes crashing into things as a result. After we moved to a bigger place (with a better pet policy, I might add), I put his cage in our livingroom/diningroom area, where sunlight can reach it and where we spend a lot of our time. I thought the combination of sunlight, space and company would help him to relax and maybe pick less, but since christmas he has begun to bleed again.

I am currently waiting onthe delivery of a vet-approved spray that is supposed to help with irritated/dry skin, some toys (I figured although doves aren't as interested in them as hookbills, it might help to try), and some supplies to make it easier for him to spend more time outside his cage, so I can hopefully distract him with my own company and because he generally seems more relaxed when outside the cage. If none of that works, I will likely try to get him a mate as a last resort. I already have a spare cage in which a hen could stay until they become accustomed to one another, and Curie's normal cage should be large enough to fit the pair as long as I let them out often enough. The pet shops in my town have begun offering more ringneck doves, but they rarely know the sex and do not allow DNA sexing unless you buy the bird regardless of the result. Given Curie is probably a male, I think it is important to get a female, so sexing is important. That's why a mate is a last resort, since I can't afford to get a male by accident and then have to chance it again on even more mates!

So my question to you is do you think this will be enough? Is there something else I could do to help Curie let his feathers grow in the meantime? Should I see my vet again about any of this, even though she is not an avian vet? Could there be an underlying issue aside from stress, boredom or loneliness?

I am ready to provide more information on his living conditions and pictures if it is deemed necessary. Sorry for the long post.

I want to do what is best for Curie, so any help would be greatly appreciated. :)
 

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Well I dont know a lot about doves but what do you feed, I think during the molt you should feed an 18% protien mix for good feather.

As far as finding a mate you should look for a breeder and let them know that you want a hen.

Some one with doves should come along that knows a lot more than I do to help you.

A picture is not necessary but we always like them.
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I have always fed him Hagen's Pigeon and Dove seed mix. Should I order another type online?

And I am uncertain of whether there are any breeders around here apart from whoever is supplying the pet shop with their doves now. Any tips for how to find one?
 
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