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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all, I just found this feral pigeon in my driveway, he/she is very lightweight, has cold feet, and cannot fly. The bird is distressed at my presence and I don't know what to do, I last had a pigeon taken to the local wildlife center from my city but they just euthanized the poor bird (October 2014) I do not want to send this one to his death, I want to help him/her. She is not eating but did drink water. What can I do, what could be wrong? I appreciate your help, pigeon's life may be at stake.
 

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The bird could be dehydrated, so best not to feed him till he is warmed and rehydrated. You can put a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar in a cup of tepid water and give him that to drink. Wait a few hours and let him drink before trying to feed him anything. Do you have any bird seed?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your reply Jay3! Yes, I put pigeon in a box and placed some bird seed in. I tried having the bird eat from my hand but ot just turned away. Unfortunately, I don't think this birdie likes being inside, but he/she can't fly, there's feral cats amd raccoons around so its best for bird to stay in. I do not want to cause it any additional distress, but I want it to eat.
 

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Can you post a pic of the bird? He may be injured or sick. If he doesn't start eating, you may need to hand feed him. You can do this fairly easily with frozen peas which have been defrosted and warm under warm water. How many peas would depend on his age or size. If he should suddenly be able to fly then he will get out of the box. Can you cover it with a grill or something that won't make it dark in the box?


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.

Thank you for helping the poor little thing BTW.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
I tried feeding him but he is very stubborn that he expels the corn/seeds from his beak, I put a sprinkle of sugar into the water as advised, and he did drink some. I will try to get him to an avian vet tomorrow, hope he/she eats and survives! He is distressed upon my presence so I guess I will let him sleep as to preserve the strength he does have.

I named him Aqua, since he/she loves water :)

thanks for helping us!

http://imgur.com/V1XbR2W
 

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There is a great avian veterinary hospital in Oakley, Medical Center for Birds. We drive four hours there from where we live in Atascadero to see Drs Speer and Olsen there when our birds are ill. Also I don't know how close you are to Palomacy but they rescue wild pigeons. Long term if you want help rehabbing the bird there is also a wildlife rescue near you. Wildcare in San Rafael is supposed to be very good. As you mentioned some places just euthanize pigeons so please never surrender the bird to anyone who may do that. Our first pigeon, Phoebe, was a feral who would have been euthanized. We had her for eight years and she was a truly wonderful creature. Hope you decide to adopt Aqua permanently though as your pet.
http://www.mercurynews.com/pets-animals/ci_22270937/wildlife-rehab-and-rescue-groups
 

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What I said was a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar to rehydrate in a cup of tepid water. Not sprinkling sugar into the water.
If you fed the defrosted peas, you push them way to the back of the throat. If he is still spitting them out, then you aren't pushing them back far enough.
Not possible to post a picture? Can you look way down his throat with a flashlight and see if there is anything down there, like yellowish patches.
If you cannot get him to a vet today, then he needs to be fed or he will just get weaker. Also, you need to leave a small crock of water with him to drink when he wants to. And a dish of seed.
This guy may just need some help right now, and may be fine to be released back to his natural life afterwards. If that be the case, then releasing him would be best. It's what he knows.
 

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I did post directions to feeding the peas.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
My precious Aqua passed away overnight. Browsing around, the recommended link, it is likely Aqua had Canker, however her feces were yellow and watery suggesting kidney/liver damage, unfortunately, there are no overnight animal hospitals so in this case, having the critical care medicine and ability to test tube Aqua were the best possible solutions but maybe she was too far gone and even the medicines would have caused her damage. Jay3, I did post her picture: http://imgur.com/V1XbR2W


I will miss my precious Aqua, such a cute bird with such defined character, not to mention charm. Meet you in the other side Aqua. We shall meet again! RIP. thanks for the help.
 

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Thanks, I hadn't seen the pic. Yellow urates are common with canker. If the bird was down for a while, God knows when he last ate. Could have been anything. Sorry he died.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks CWebster, I am sad for being unable to save Aqua's life. I contacted Palomacy thru Facebook and they suggested me 3 area vets, but none of them were opened late at night, wish I had the critical care formula medication and had tube feed her, I will try to get some knowledge from the local wildlife rehab to see how I could nurse an injured bird/animal. I just could not open Aqua's beak like they do in the youtube videos. Nevertheless, I still look forward to the day I reunite with my precious Aqua, such lovely and charming bird, I will never forget. Thanks so much for helping us!
 

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Now that you have grown to love pigeons you might want to rescue another one. There are many wonderful pigeons looking for homes.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I would love to have pigeons/doves as Pets! but I need to gain the nursing skills necessary, it is very heartbreaking being unable to save them when they most need help. It would be ideal to have them in an aviary, the Palomacy website highlights many tips on pigeon keeping and there are several youtube videos as well :D I'm in the process of moving out later this year to next year and hopefully the next landlord doesn't mind pigeons as pets. I really don't see the harm having them pampered so there should be no issues. :)

I can't wait, having them around! It would be a dream come true, I will do my best to make it a reality!
 
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