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Tourniquets, accidental or on purpose and what happens when you remove them (spraddle leg fixers beware)

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

I've let this one sit on the burner for a while so as not to hurt the feelings of the keeper in this situation. 

 

We've all heard that when you have a serious wound, you should wrap it in some sort of a tourniquet to stem the flow of blood. What information often doesn't come with that, is that tourniquets cause extreme levels of blood pressure on the active side of the barrier. When you place a tourniquet on someone, you should always have it removed at the hospital, less the limb you are trying to save be destroyed by the level of blood pressure built up at the tourniquet. Properly done the, physician will relieve the blood pressure then remove the tourniquet. 

 

Now we in our yards and aviaries don't really have the means to relieve blood pressure properly, so for us it's best to avoid using a tourniquet at all. However some medical help that people will occasionally offer to their birds can have the side effect of causing a tourniquet on a limb. In particular, spraddle leg fixes and curled toe fixes can cause their own tourniquet unintentionally. The picture below is from a customer of mine who tried to fix spraddle legs in a coturnix chick and things didn't go as planned. This particular keeper chose to use the band aid method of binding the hips of the chick and the band aid accidentally completed itself around the birds leg. By the morning it looked bad, and keeper, not knowing what would happen, removed the tourniquet. The bird passed shortly after, I'm guessing from shock. 

 

The moral of this story is if your bird intentionally or unintentionally get placed or caught in a tourniquet, they will need to be taken to a vet if you hope to save the limb/bird. Hopefully this will also give people fixing spraddle legs a bit more caution as I'm sure this happens much more often than I hear about. 

 

post #2 of 2
Personally, I don't think band aids should be used for spraddled legs. But, that will probably cause a certain amount of conjecture on here.

I use zip ties and small rubberbands. Just as effective and easier to change. Done this way, it is very simple to monitor any leg injury or swelling.
Edited by enola - 9/26/15 at 9:33am
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