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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello.

I have had pigeons since I was 12 (so well over 25yrs now). In my time I have seen and dealt with a lot of issues. I'm no stranger to having to hand rear... Squeak has me baffled though.

Squeak is about 2-3 weeks old now. I have been feeding him/her for about 2 weeks. The parents stopped feeding it. At first I thought the sibling was just too pushy, so I removed it at feed time. The parents came, didn't see the other squab and left poor Squeak hungry. I noted it was quiet. It tried to get food but not a sound came out. It was weak.

So I started doing some assist feeds. Within a day and a half it started squeaking as it should. I thought great, now it is doing what it should it may be in with a chance. No go, they refused food. So at this point I opted to take over the parental role full time and brought it inside.

I am in Australia, so we don't have Kaytee feed. I got a very hugh quality formula. All was going well, but after a few days the crop stopped emptying. I added ACV to the feed, tried apple sauce. Nothing has worked. This has been a battle for over a week now. I have had no choice but to feed with food still in the crop. 12 hours plus and it still was not going down. I thought maybe a crop bra, but the crop is not distended. I have never over fed. I am. Monitoring closely for sour crop, all is well so far.

We have done a vet visit. Poo checked, all is well. Although now the poo is watery and very bright yellow/green.

I have done apple sauce and that did have better results for emptying the crop, but not a good diet full time. So I changed to a cheaper formula. The poo went healthy again, but then changed back to the watery bright poo.

It also takes in air when feeding. It can clear the air on its own, but a lot of the time I have to do it during the feed via massage. Not preferred I know, but if I don't it gets next to no food and the formula gets wasted.

The poor bird has no fat to it at all. Growth is slow. Today I have started it on calcium and D3.

It is lively, kept warm. Food is warm when fed.

I am at a loss with this one. It only weighs 86grams!

Any ideas for adding fat? For why the crop is not emptying?

I will attach photos. Phot oonef the bigger squab is the sibling so you can see the growth difference.

Squeak's crop does look odd from underneath. I mentioned it to the vet but they fobbed me off. Unfortunately we moved and I am back to battling with vets who do not listen because they went to vet school and got a degree and I didn't. I am contemplating travelling the 2.5hrs to my old vet who always listened because they understand people know their animals better than they do. I have never been wrong in the past with any hunches or knowing something is wrong. They respected that.

Anyway, that little vent over.... Hoping someone can help.
 

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Did the vet checked for a yeast infection? Yeast causes slow crop in babies. For that you need Nystatin, but I don't think you can from a pharmacy in your country. Medistatin is powdered Nystatin for pigeons that you can order from suppliers, but this might take a while to reach you. In the meantime you can keep on with the applesauce. Always add a bit to his formula for easier digestion. The parents knew something was wrong and that's why they stopped feeding him.

Also check with a flashlight way back in his throat. If you see whitish growths, then he has a yeast infection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for that! My first suspicion was paratyphoid, I have experienced that in a bird this young previously and the parents stopped feeding. Sparrow went on to live a happy life, I still have her brother Cotton.

I knew the parents knew something I didn't, but upside is we can fix things they can't! I will have a look into the yeast side of things and see what I can do! Thank you!

Any ideas on helping Squeak gain weight faster? Or just hope it is a yeast infection and once that clears I guess he/she will come along in leaps and bounds? Squeak has so much fight and vigor! Can't give up! I will try anything I can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks! I just did some research and it is looking tough to get anything to treat it anywhere around here. I can't even find any natural solutions to tie me over. I did come across a treatment for Coccidia though. I can't believe I forgot about it, it wasn't actually all that long ago, but one of my guinea keets was just not growing. I ended up treating it for this and within a few days of completing the treatment it started to grow. He is still smaller then everyone else, but now he has just claimed top spot in the flock!

I can get this tomorrow, so am wondering thoughts on that? Is it worth a try? I know giving antibiotics willy nilly is not good in the long run, but I need to do something sooner rather than later. Squeak only has the lack of growth and diaherrea in the symptoms, but then again Tiny (the keet) only had a couple of symptoms, too (lethargy and lack of growth).
 

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I don't know if you can treat such a young baby for coccidiosis. Even for deworming one has to wait till they are at least 2 months old. How old was the other one you treated? Ginger is a natural product for treating coccisiosis. Maybe add a small pinch to his formula and see if the droppings improve.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The keet was only few weeks old. Maybe 1 month at most. I got a treatment from the vet, my good vet that is far away now. They contacted an avian specialist for dosage.

It was added to the water though. I'd have to mix it through the formula each feed.

There is a type in the pet shop, I was planning on reading the label.

Is that fresh ginger or powdered? I can't give it anything too firm as it seems unable to digest anything too thick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So This morning Squeak's crop was empty! First time in over a week! I had some baby probiotic in the fridge. So it was formula, ACV, apple sauce and probiotic. I think the combination has helped.

My 4 year old assisted in getting the air out by holding the feeding balloon up high so it stretched its neck while I massaged, a lot less stressful as it was fighting hard against me now. Considering how thin it is it has so much energy and strength, which is why it has lasted.
As a result, Squeak has turned in with a proper full crop and no air at all to dispell on his/her own. This is so encouraging.

I will do the ginger with the next feed.

I was planning on seeing if I could book in and try another vet (or make the 2.5hr drive to my old one) today. Think I will hold off now though and see how Squeak goes over the weekend.

Will keep you posted. Thanks for your help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Marina, Squeak and I owe you a big huge thanks! More feathers, digesting food like crazy and having 4 feeds a day. Less air being taken in with the feeds. Squeak now weighs 130g in just a few short days!

I bought an oatmeal apple sauce baby food mix, I am hoping to introduce that in another 3 or so days and see hoe the digestion goes. I feel a little trepidation offering anything else, but at some point Squeak needs to be introduced to small seeds. I had thought of hemp seeds, I know they help gain fat and I am thinking they also may be easy yo digest.

I respect your opinion so would really like to know your thoughts on how to proceed from here? My husband has no knowledge of birds, he was terrified of them before he met me... Well, years after he met me he got over it. He is surrounded by pet Guinea Fowl, Chickens, Pigeons and then wild birds too... He even caught an injured Butcher Bird the other day and brought it home in his hat! But yes, no real input from him as he has no idea what to do for our birds unless I give instructions 😂
 

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That's great! Rather stick to what you are feeding now. You can start adding small seeds to his formula for him to get used to it. They love hemp seeds. You can also grind up some safflower and shelled sunflowerseeds to add for weight gain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks. Squeak is still powering along, not fully covered in feathers yet and still could gain some more fat on the bones but size wise, almost as big as the sibling now! I just wish I could get the little bugger clean! I give a warm bath or a wipe down depending on how messy a feed was had, but for some reason the formula dries hard even though I was sure I got it all off! I keep trying to soak and soften, but man alive is that stuff hard to get off feathers and a squirming bird! 😂
 
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