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Old 12-05-2012, 08:50 AM
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Talking New Bird Rescue!

An old friend of mine has started up a new bird rescue in my hometown! I'll be volunteering there from now on. I'm so psyched! I always wanted to help do something like this, and as luck may have it, the opportunity has opened up locally!

I don't want to give away my location so readily, so I don't want to give out a ton of information, but does anyone who volunteers/runs a bird rescue have any input about this venture? Any advice that you wish you would have known from the beginning that could perhaps help us out? Any snags that you didn't expect, yet you got through?

So far, we have a bunch of conures and an African Grey who are residents at the rescue (it literally just opened up this week!). The AG is REALLY freaked out, and thrashes around his cage at the slightest foreign sound/movement. I hope to get him to settle a bit and get used to people....

Anyway, any advice/help that you have would be great!
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:04 AM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

The first thing that comes to mind when taking in birds from various and sometimes unknown backgrounds is the importance of quarantining new arrivals appropriately. I have heard some pretty bad horror stories of rescues with good intentions unwittingly spreading avian diseases around to healthy birds. Even if a bird appears healthy it could be a carrier of many contagious diseases and sometimes all it takes is the stress of moving to a new place to lower their immune system enough that the start infecting others
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:20 AM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

Very good point! I'll be visiting the rescue this evening so I can get a better idea of the set up of the place, but I'll definitely bring that up!
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:55 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

Very cool! Your location says Midwest, you can pm me if you want with more info. I've been wanting to donate some things to my local rescue but theyre communication is awful. I am in Nebraska
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:21 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

I have just started volunteering at a new rescue too in Baltimore so glad this one is close to me and that I can help!
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:17 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

If you are just running this rescue from an ordinary home, quarantine gets hard (actually effective quarantine is impossible) when you are accepting in many birds all at once. You can't quarantine them all off from one another unless you have a state of the art facility and a lot of time! But there are things you can do to minimise risk. Have a room for animals who have passed quarantine and do them first on the care rotation and do animals in quarantine last. But honestly to halt the spread of disease you would need to shower and change clothes after entering the quarantine room every single time.
I would suggest researching common diseases in your area/country and looking at what you can do to eliminate or restrict possible transference.

Rescue is a very expensive venture. Initially all the vet bills come out of your own pocket. I have seen many rescues attempt to run by taking in animals and not being able to afford appropriate veterinary care they wait until they have a deposit taken for an animal before they have it vetted. This isn't a rescue, this is a reseller But many rescues run in this way. Ideally you will be taking all new animals straight in for a veterinary check up before bringing them into the facility.

Also, remember to have a full behavioural assessment on each animal which goes up for adoption. Make sure all their quirks are noted. The last thing you want is to rehome one of these birds in need to someone that was unaware of their behavioural issues and is not set up to cope with that particular behaviour ... its happened to me before, I adopted a dog from a very poorly set up rescue who did not do a full behavioural assessment (and didn't have her vetted or desexed until the DAY I picked her up, I had to pick her up from the vets!!!!). The dog had a weak bladder wall which caused it to urinate when excited, when submissive, when playing, when sleeping. It was a large dog so it was a large amount of urine... and we are renting a brand new house. She would urinate (beyond her control) in the house several times a day. No matter how I mopped the house still smelled of urine. I was extremely distressed, I LOVED this dog so I let fly at them (they KNEW she had issues and didnt tell me!!!!!!!!)... it turned into a HUGE very emotional drama. This is why I am reluctant to ever buy from a rescue again. If a dog has been in care for a while they will often lie about them to move them on.
Make sure you dont end up being one of those rescues, I would hate to have someone go through what I did

Also... good luck thank you for working with birds in need!!
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Old 12-07-2012, 02:47 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

Quote: Originally Posted by triordan View Post
I have just started volunteering at a new rescue too in Baltimore so glad this one is close to me and that I can help!
Awesome! We're both lucky ducks. Haha.
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Old 12-07-2012, 03:39 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

Quote: Originally Posted by Thingamagigs View Post
If you are just running this rescue from an ordinary home, quarantine gets hard (actually effective quarantine is impossible) ...
All very good advice. The house has rather ample room, but yes, PURE quarantine is rather difficult in most places. Currently, we have a pair of GCC in quarantine in their own room; all of the other rescues were already quarantined at an earlier date and they've come a LONG way (many had their feathers all chewed off, and now they have full plumage!). There're around 4 rooms upstairs, a couple of places on the main level, and a couple rooms in the basement (which the "owner" of the rescue uses for her breeders; she breeds a couple of conures and IRN's).

That's rotten, about your dog adoption situation! We had a similar problem with an English Sheepdog that we got. He peed EVERYWHERE for the same reasons. I was young, and don't remember who we gave him to, but I remember it being a true mess.

We aren't going to be so strict that adopting a bird is impossible, but they aren't going out to just anybody; many have to be worked with for a while because they are either a.) afraid of hands, b.) nutritionally deficient, or c.) just not quite "tame"... We already had a lady texting/phoning/emailing NON stop about one of the pineapple conures that's here, and then we found out she has ads up all over on Craigslist, selling birds.... So we aren't selling to her!

This Sunday, we're having a reputable vet from IL coming to stay at the rescue for a day and have a bird clinic. Grooming, check ups, and the like. He's going to check out our new conures I mentioned above, but the rest have all had check ups I believe....

Thank you for all of your input! We'll do our very best!
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Old 12-07-2012, 03:40 PM
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Re: New Bird Rescue!

Quote: Originally Posted by grey782163 View Post
The rescue I work with is set up very efficiently. The intake coordinator and the volunteer picking up the bird get as much info as possible from the surrendering owners (likes, dislikes, medical history, preferences, behavioral issues, etc). The volunteer then has the surrender form filled out by the owners and the bird is off to the vet. After vetting, the bird is placed in a foster home. Fosters are prohibited from allowing foster birds and personally owned birds to interact physically (they can't be in the same room). Very thorough, efficient, and effective. When a transport is required, the teamwork involved and the level of communication is amazing. Good luck, I sincerely hope it succeeds
That's awesome! Sounds like you guys have it down pat! Thank you, and I hope the rescue you work with continues to do good work!
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