Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Indiana, USA
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Elisa recently broke her toe and subsequently lost it. I took her to an emergency avian vet for initial treatment, because, naturally, she did it on a Saturday and when my own avian vet was out of town. They amputated the part of the toe that they could tell was affected, but later more of the toe died and was picked off or sluffed off. The entire process took several weeks. The toe and entire foot was infected and swollen for some time.
I learned from both avian vets and from people on the linnie forum that bird toes are different from human toes. They do not have the ciruclation human digits have. Even in humans, digits have notoriously bad circulation, but in birds this is even less. In humans, one needs to be concerned that gang green will set in when the wound doesn't heal quickly, but in birds, the toes generally just die and fall off. This is the way birds are made, and it is for their own protection. If there has been significant enough damage, and I am not saying there has been, but if the damage has been significant, the toe will die and sluff off. It will be difficult to watch, but it should not be life-threatening unless the damage was all the way up into the thigh of the bird, and there is no reason to believe that is the case here.
Elisa's toe just kept dying off little by little for several weeks, and my avian vet thinks that is because she probably got the entire foot caught in something at first. It could have just been that the toenail itself was caught and the trauma from that and then subsequent infection caused most of the toe to die.
Not all toe bites result in the loss of the toe, so please don't think I am predicting that. I am not. I have seen many toes bitten at the bird store that were not lost. They often put liquid bandage on to stop bleeding. It works really well. That is manufactured for humans, but works well for birds. I have also heard of people using a tiny drop of super glue, but that would be more frightening for me than liquid bandage would be, but if it saved a bird's life, well worth it.
I don't have any liquid bandage here, but I should get some. It would be better for me to be prepared for a bleeding emergency.
Last edited by nanay; 07-30-2011 at 04:21 AM.