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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Bird Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19778
Experience:  2 plus years as a bird vet
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A friend of a friend found this injured pigeon on the ground

Customer Question

A friend of a friend found this injured pigeon on the ground about 4 days ago and kept it in a box for 2 days. The bird was given to me since I have birds and know a little bit but this little guy - he has a multiple fracture on his left leg and probably a wing injury. I already paid $60 and took him to a vet who gave me an estimate for close to $600 it would take to fix him. It looks to me like he was hit by a car. He wants to live though, is friendly. drinking lots of water and eating. His eyes are bright and he came up to the front of the cage this morning. What do I do? Everyone says to put him down but he wants to live. He's a lovely bird as well. Should I offer him baby bird formula as it's packed with vitamins and minerals. The leg is useless and just hanging there. What do I do????
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.


When it comes to wild animals, my recommendation is to either fix them and release them or euthanize. I don't think you're giving him a good quality of life just living in a cage or box. It's different with captive raised birds. When they are wild birds with injuries, you really either have to repair and release or do the humane thing and euthanize.

The leg can probably just be amputated. The wing needs x-rays to determine if there are fractures. If there are wing fractures, they can be pinned and then the pins removed in a few weeks when things are back to normal. At that time, he can be released.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This pigeon has survived 2 days with people that didn't have a clue as to what to do with an injured bird and 3 days with me - I know just a little bit from caring for my birds for about 20 years. Her eyes are bright, she's alert, moving, drinking water and eating - there's no doubt she wants to live. What would you say about offering her some baby bird feed formula (Exact)? What about antibiotics to prevent infection? Administer probiotic after antibiotics? Her left leg is just hanging so you're probably right about the amputation; meanwhile should I bind it to her body along with her hurt wing (using vet-tape)? She's trying to stand on 1 leg and does pretty well at it too - this is a definite improvement.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Depending on the leg problem, I will definitely release her or care for her the rest of her life if she can't get around, if she comes back or can't fly.
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.

I would just pick up a pelleted bird food that is complete and balanced to feed this pigeon. That would be better than a fledgling formula.

I don't think I would start antibiotics at this point. I don't usually do that until the actual infection is taken care of. Otherwise, we may be breeding resistant bacteria.