Saturday, September 10, 2011

A sweet Songbird needed compassion and received it!

A little sweetie of a songbird left us today. I feel somewhere between sad and glad.  Sad it had to be 'put down' graciously with the help of our local TORONTO WILDLIFE CENTRE and glad that we helped it when it needed some.

Yesterday when I went to walk Pepper - a little tiny roundish "ball" was sitting on the sidewalk in front of our building.  A set of sisters were standing nearby looking at it and I stopped {with Pepper off to one side}...and in the next second, a man stopped too. So there we all were and the little ball was a tiny, wee yellow breasted bird - clearly a baby too. It was sitting there surrounded by us giants, and was quiet.

For a minute, none of us knew what to do. Finally, the man picked it up by its wing (not reccommended!) and put it in the small hedge near the sidewalk - where it would be safer. Then we all sort of went on. I made a mental note to check on it.

Hours later that day, I came home with my daughter, we went towards the bush - I was hoping it had managed to fly off but we could hear it loudly calling and it was sitting still near the same spot. It tried to move its wings but it seemed helpless. I know we have racoons that come by nearly every night - and I have seen what they do to small birds!  So I told my daughter, we have to take it in and over to somewhere.

I went upstairs, and having rescued many animals in my day - I chose a shoe box and made air holes, lined it with some paper towel and grabbed a soft washcloth and small potholder and scurried back down. In a few minutes, it was safe up in our apartment. I could see that its one eye was damaged - it looked as though the eyelid had shut over it, and one leg seemed bad. But it calmed down when we put the box in a safe, dark spot in our storage room.

Of course - by now, it was past 6 pm and a Friday. WHERE TO GO - WHAT TO DO?

By checking online, we found the TORONTO WILDLIFE CENTRE and read that it might be a bird that accidentally hit a window.

WE CALLED THEIR HOTLINE - 416-631-0662 and as they say, a hotline member called back about 40 mins later. 

After a few questions about its appearance - in their effort to identify the bird and its age {if they are not equipped to deal with the animal in question, they re-direct you to another resource} and a quick consultation - the hotline member asked for us to bring the bird in right away in the morning!  It might have a head trauma (considering the eye!) and in the meantime, she gave us instructions on its care - not to give it FOOD & WATER - DON'T ASSUME IT'S SAFE TO DO! The bird can actually be hurt by swallowing/intake of water under its hurt condition!!!

After a short period in the dark - the bird fell asleep!  We were tickled pink! And I took that to be a good sign!!!!  All through the night, we checked on it and it was perched upright on one of the potholders that I had since put in the box, and it was breathing and asleep.

Here it is perched safely in its home -made from a shoe box 
and tucked away on a shelf in our quite storage room - safe, dry, dark and quiet - a must
to enable it to calm down.  Apparently if it has a concussion, blood can build up and
put pressure on its brain. By having a quiet spot to rest - the pressure will
ease up.  So much involved with a bird's anatomy that it requires a real expert!
Do try to get them to one. 

Build a temporary home from a shoe box - air holes in the lid - we put about 30 of them about the diameter of a pencil. Plus our shoe box had 2 small openings on the side. 
A soft place to sit on the bottom - and possibly if its for longer, to be able to change if  soiled.
NO FOOD or DRINK till you have had expert advice - if the bird is sick, it could make 
things worse.  

Isn't it adorable - wish we had asked if it was a boy or girl!
We called it Henry because we thought it could be a Henrietta that way too.

Sweetness !


We don't have a car. And that sucks kinda at times like this. And our friend had to go to work next morning - and it was a fair distance from where we live to Downsview. But checking with my assisted transport service {for wheelchair users Wheel Trans} - I discovered that the centre was near YORKDALE MALL - and I was able to book a ride there and home. Once at the mall, my daughter took a taxi with the bird and delivered it promptly for 9 am. I was asked to call and tell them when we were on our way to assure them that we were indeed coming.

DIAGNOSIS - the bird, sadly, was in rough shape - and the injury to its eye had advanced. Had we found the bird when it first was injured, they might of been able to do more but it was a baby, and normally, a baby that has been lost from its home - can survive because they can hop around and get by until they can fly.

But they need both eyes to gauge things - and so our sweetie we came to know, had to be put to sleep.

We weren't happy, and it felt sort of like that sunken feeling you get when something goes the wrong way.

The staff at the centre had also told me initially - that they OFFER SERVICE that is intended to SAVE THE ANIMALS versus other clinics who do not have the resources to keep animals, and have to resort to euthanizing them.  THEREFORE THEY REALLY NEED THE DONATIONS TO HELP PROVIDE THE CENTRE!!
They were compassionate and had been so helpful - and we appreciated that very much.

While my daughter was there, another man had brought in a very injured seagull - he had it in a large box. I can imagine how many animals meet with disaster and need our help.

We feel that we gave a sweet little thing a restful night - it would of sat outside probably exhausted from being on guard, crying out loud. At least it slept well and had its last night in a safe spot.

Of course, I made a card because I - well, just do!  I might be able to donate some to the centre who can give them to donors or their volunteers as a note of appreciation.

Card Front

Thank You Greeting with room for Organization's Message
and Multiples of Card

My 'bird' checking out my collection!

A Holiday Version - note the detail on envelope!

Jolly Bingo Bits Stamp Set - soooo much fun! Combinations are endless :)

Tiny detail of glitter on edge and gem stone embellishment (blue).


 [picture of the cute baby GOLDFINCH is from the blog called: THE BLOGGED SINK - very funny and has nice poems! ]

ADDED NOTE -  a friend SUE told me of her experience with the same organization!  Her injured bird was a DOVE and it made through ok thanks to the TWC, and here is the other nice thing - they called her weeks later to ask her if she'd like to come and be present when they released the bird !!!  HOW NICE IS THAT!!

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