|Photo from drsfostersmith.com|
What if you don't want to spend your hard-earned money on buying an avian first aid kit that is offered online? Why not make your own? It is not that difficult. Some items you may already have in your home to add to a basic kit.
First of all put together a list (perhaps on an index card) of emergency contacts and keep it with your kit. Your list or card could include your vet's emergency number, a complete medical history of each of your birds including their ages, and the number of a local poison control hotline (in case your bird ingests something harmful), Another thing to consider is adding the phone number of a friend who is also a pet bird owner or someone you trust.
Secondly, you will need something to house your kit items. If you decide to make your own, you can use anything from a 1 gal. ziploc freezer bag to a small tool box, a document case, a small tackle box or an art supply storage organizer. It's up to you. Whatever you have around that would hold the contents you purchase.
Here are things that I recommend you add to your kit, most of which you can find locally. The links are to examples I found online, but other brands will do:
- 1 - bottle Styptic Powder (for toenail & blood feather bleeding only)
- 1 - pair scissors (to trim feathers or cut bandage tape--I use the Fiskars double thumb scissors 5 in. length, stainless steel. They also work for cutting threads or small strings that become wrapped around a toe. A pair of small medical scissors would work as well.)
- 1 - pair hemostat 5" locking forcephttp://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41ybE0TOLwL._SY450_.jpgs (to remove broken blood feathers)--I found a pair for $1 at a local flea market.
- 8 - cotton swabs (to apply apply ointment or creams prescribed by your vet)--Q-Tip purse pack of 30 or generic brand works well if you don't have any on hand)
- 1 - bottle eye & skin flushing solution, 1-8 oz. (to flush eyes or wounds)
- 1 - roll 1/2" x 2 1/2 yd. adhesive tape (to secure bandages)
- 1 - pair latex gloves (for personal protection)
- 1 - 1" x 6 yd. sterile gauze bandage to (wrap wound areas)
- 2 - iodine antiseptic swabs (PVP) (for sterilization)
- 2 - antiseptic towelettes (to clean wound or hands)
- 2 - pks. 2" x 2" gauze pads (to apply to wound area)
- 1 - anti-bacterial hand wipe (for personal cleanup)
This is by no means an extensive first aid kit to cover all emergencies, but will get you started for minor emergencies until you are able to take your bird to your vet for emergency care. Other items to keep on hand for emergencies are a travel carrier for transportation to a vet. I found a small animal carrier at a garage sale for $2. I cleaned and sterilized it, and it works great. The next is a towel to restrain or secure your sick or injured bird.
Keep your emergency kit near your bird room so that you can get to it immediately.