On June 10, 2020, a juvenile Canada goose presented to the clinic after being abandoned by the rest of its flock. Upon first examination, we noted he was lethargic, had a few superficial scabs on his head and neck, and was mildly dehydrated.
After cleaning his wounds with a dilute disinfecting solution, we began him on a course of pain medications and antibiotics. We also administered subcutaneous fluids to correct his dehydration. We also collected a blood sample to run diagnostics and better evaluate his condition. One of our concerns for wild birds presenting with severe lethargy is lead poisoning, however this test came back negative. Next, we determined his PCV/TP values. PCV, or packed cell volume, tells us the percentage of red blood cells to total blood volume, which is helpful in determining if the patient is anemic. Most birds have a PCV of about 40 – 60%, and this goose was mildly anemic at 35%. The TP, or total protein, tells us the amount of proteins in the blood serum and can range from 3.5-5.5 mg%. Our patient had a TP of 4.6 mg% which was in the normal range. Continue reading