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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today I went to my feed store to get some Baden Super Flyer but came home
with a severely pecked young bird. This is the 8th injured bird I've taken home from my feed store in the past 2 years. Fanciers and racers over breed and give their unwanted birds to the feed store. Unfortunately after 50 years in business the owners still don't know how to take care of birds. Last year after taking a pigeon home I started to clean his wounds but soon realized I was washing blood off a bare scull. That bird died. Since then I've just let back of the head and neck wounds heal by themselves. I've had good luck so far with this method of providing a clean environment. Because of the proximity of the wound to the brain I am afraid to use any type of chemical treatment. The young one I took today is quite healthy but the wounds on the back of the head and neck are deep and large. This feed store supplies a couple of semi's of food per month to the birds in my area. I've tried to train the owners and staff about pigeons but they keep over crowing cages and putting young birds in small cages with mated pairs. If anyone has treated scalped birds please advise. I've heard some type of artificial skin might be
good.
 

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Good for you for making the rescue. I share your frustration. I always put neosoporin cream on scalped birds. After a time, the skin does grow over the head and new feathers will grow. I would have thought this impossible but it does happen.
 

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If you can get a prescription from someone in your area, then get a hold of some Sivadene creme. It's basically what the avian vets recommend for this type of injury and the wound will heal very nicely. I've used it on bullet wounds, head injuries, predator injuries et cetera and always w/good results.

I was googling and found this interesting link about Silvadene on head wounds in addition to much other information:

http://www.doc-cafes.com/Procuring_...Health_Care_Supplies_for_Veterinary_Use_26881

Anyway, if you can swing the Sivadene, great, if not, neosporin creme is over
the counter. Thanks for giving a damn about the treatment of the pigeons at your
feed and grain store.

fp
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
At the National Rehabillitators Conference the vet that gave the workshop on wound management said not to put Neosporin in open wounds that have not scabbed off. This morning the young one is starting to scab. Thanks for the tips!
 

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They sell silvadene in the drug stores now, without prescription, at least here in Fl. It is amazing how fast any wound heals with it.
I had a severy sclaped grackle, it was so severe you could see the skull. I wiped the wound with warm water and applied silvadene twice a day for a long time. Months later some scar tissue grew over the skull. I had asked my vet if could have some skin transplant done but he assured me that it will heal and the bone won't be exposed forever.

Reti
 

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The appalling conditions at that feed store brought tears to my eyes! How sad that the owners there aren't listening to your advice, superflyer. Thank you for taking care of this pigeon (and the others) and I hope his scalp heals. It sounds like silvadene is a good option for him if you can find it where you're at.
 

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In real bad cases, you might want to go ahead and put the bird on a systemic antibiotic just in case any infection went into the bloodstream.

Pidgey
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The young bird scabbed off nicely with no sign of infection : )
She is very smart and friendly. She is eating peanuts from my hand.
The store is at fault first and foremost but so are the racers and fanciers
that over bread and dump unwanted birds at the store.
 

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The young bird scabbed off nicely with no sign of infection : )
She is very smart and friendly. She is eating peanuts from my hand.
The store is at fault first and foremost but so are the racers and fanciers
that over bread and dump unwanted birds at the store.
No, the store is at fault. At least the the birds were taken to the store and not set free or killed by the fanciers and racers :eek: And then they are lucky enough to have YOU checking on them!
I'm glad your little one is doing better. I've had a couple really bad one's (scalpings) in the past and they healed up very nicely. Their adults now and you'd never know it, all feathers grew in. And their the friendliest birds in my loft:)
 

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I think they are both at fault, the people that dump unwanted birds there and the feed store. But thank god for you checking in on them. Good job. It is heartbreaking to see them pick on one bird. I don't understand it. I hope she makes a full recovery and you keep her. min
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Usually a young bird is scalped when in a crowded small cage
or when in a confined space with a mated pair. I've noticed that my birds try to chase their young off when a new clutch of eggs comes along. I think
scalping happens when a bird cant get away and the scalpers keep
trying to make him disappear.
 

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oh that's awful, if it was me i would let someone know like the humane society, or other local animal welfare organization.
i would rinse with nolvasan also twice a day or i have also used tegaderm for injuries like this, it's a pain work with but if you make sure the wound is very clean then apply it works great and u can actually watch it heal underneath, and it eventually will come off on it's own
but you need to pluck the feathers toward the wound so it's only sticking to the skin surrounding the wound not any feathers
get a bunch of pieces cut to the right size, then open them and put them on the edge of something.
works great if you can get it on them before it sticks to itself, can be frustrating, why you need a bunch of pieces
 

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...I've just let back of the head and neck wounds heal by themselves. I've had good luck so far with this method of providing a clean environment. Because of the proximity of the wound to the brain I am afraid to use any type of chemical treatment.
Today I was helping muck out one of my neighbor's coops, and while the birds were in their fly-pen/aviary one of them got scalped. I noticed that the birds were jostling each other and while I was scraping could hear occasional wing-popping among them, but didn't suspect a problem until we set out their food & water afterward. Then I noticed that one of the birds hadn't gone in to eat. He turned around, and I saw he'd been scalped.

We have separated him from the others, and he's now in a breeding cage, (in the next section of the coop; the others are currently unoccupied; the breeder cocks & hens each have their own sections when they're not being bred) with a private supply of food, water, and grit, a chunk of brick to perch on, and a nest bowl lined with a paper towel.

The feathers are missing from most of his head, but the skin looks only brushburned, and his eyes are not injured (thank god). He doesn't appear to be sick or ill otherwise (lean but not "light" and carries himself well, and is attentive, but not wild or panicky. He is about 10 years old - wearing a '99 band. When I checked on him just before I left, he was lounging on one wing, then stood up and looked interested/wary, but didn't growl or go "whuw" at me.

I won't get to see him again until Thursday (the neighbor is in hospital and I've been helping one of his friends, who doesn't seem to know much about pigeons, look after the birds. He comes every other day, and we give them enough food and water for 2 days at a time (not the best, I know, but so far God has been gracious and we haven't had problems). The coops are kept locked and I'm not in charge of the key, so my access to them is limited).

Since this isn't my pigeon, I'm somewhat limited in what I can do for him, but I'd like to help him as much as I can. So far the other suggestions I've made, thanks to what I've learned by reading here, have been well received, so I'm reasonably confident that whatever he needs can be done.

I've read upthread about using Nolvasan and/or Silvadene, but don't know what they are. Can they be had from pharmacy or pet place? Do they require Rx? My cats' vet doesn't see birds, but might be willing to write me a scrip if I ask.

Thanks in advance for advice!

robin
 

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i usually order nolvasan (chlorhexidine) online , your vet may be willing to give or sell you some. it comes undiluted so i usually put it in a little squeeze squirt bottle, you dilute till it the color of robins eggs.
silvadene i'm not sure
 

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There is 2 types of Nolvasan (chlorhexidine), "surgical scrub" and "disinfectant".
You can use either on open wounds. "scrub" is best for just cleaning the wound - its used for prepping surgeries. "disinfectant" is best for flushing out because it doesn't "foam" like "scrub". Both are 2 tablespoons per gallon of water.
Never get it in the eyes.
Most vets use it, so I would ask your vet if you can buy a "pill vial" full. All you need is 2 tbsp.
"Scrub" is used only on the animal or bird. "Disinfectant" can be used on the animal or bird and also for cleaning cages, floors, etc.
 

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is'nt the scrub kinda thick and gel like where the other is liquid...which that is the one I use.
Yes. I use the scrub for open wounds (on everybody - birds, dogs, cats and me!) I just mix it, keep in a large Tupperware (covered) with gauze stuffed in it - ready to use. It lasts indefinitely.
 

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following up

Today I was helping muck out one of my neighbor's coops, and while the birds were in their fly-pen/aviary one of them got scalped. I noticed that the birds were jostling each other and while I was scraping could hear occasional wing-popping among them, but didn't suspect a problem until we set out their food & water afterward. Then I noticed that one of the birds hadn't gone in to eat. He turned around, and I saw he'd been scalped.
...
The scalped cockbird is back among his fellows, after a week of R&R in private accommodations, and doesn't look any worse than the ones who are bald from molting. :)
The breeding cages we're using as 'sick-bay' have openings where food & grit containers are fastened, and he managed to weasel a container loose, got out through the hole, and had been flying around the room when we opened the door today :rolleyes: so we put him back in with the others.
I kept an eye on the 'frat boys' in that coop while I was there, and he wasn't getting bullied, so I guess it's all good, for a while at least.
 

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my avian vet gives clavulox at 10mg/100g twice daily with food for seven days in the case of serious injury (eg hawk attack) as a systemic antibiotic. She tends to use a fresh saline solution to clean wounds. After my first hawk attack I got the vet to prescribe some extra clavulox for me to keep on hand in case of emergency. Not sure if it is called the same thing in your part of the world sorry but I suppose you could google it, and you guys may even be able to buy it without prescription. It comes as a small tablet of 50mg (designed for cats so the cat vet probably has it) so you have to break it into the right-ish dose and powder it and dissolve it in a small amount of water and then syringe it into your bird. I suspect you guys may be able to get something easier to dose, antibiotics are extremely tightly controlled in NZ. If this is of any help to anyone, best of luck.
I had a wee little squab the other day whose dad accidentally gashed the skin over his crop wide open, the crop was pushing right out, and I managed to suture it myself with a needle and thread and used these antibiotics and he's fine and dandy and growing perfectly. If you can sew, you can suture. Before anyone criticises me for not getting a vet to do it, it was after hours and the wound was too large and unstable to move the baby far or to leave it be. Lucky for me he had no pin feathers yet so it was quite easy to clean and sew up although very nerve wracking! He's named Tailor now on account of all his stitches! In my experience pigeons are extremely tough and brave and respond very well to basic (or even not so basic!) first aid. They seem to have fantastic immune systems too, most scalpings i have seen need little more than a clean-up and time to heal. I bring injured birds inside and put them in a wire-topped cat cage and they heal up in no time flat.
 
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