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DrRalston, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 2207
Experience:  Over twelve years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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I have a goose that has been attacked by his fellow geese.Because

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I have a goose that has been attacked by his fellow geese.Because of this he has lost the
use of his legs.He does not appear to be injured.But when we found him ,he was on his back and couldn't right himself without help.He now can't stand and falls over.When we pick him up,both his legs work furiously.Will he recover?
Hello, I'm Dr Ralston, thanks for your question.

Unfortunately, it sounds like he may have damaged either the leg itself or the nerve that supplies it. What we need to know for sure is that the leg does not have a fracture or a dislocation in the hip. This can happen after collision and the bird is unlikely to use it at all because of pain.

An xray is really needed to tell for sure. An exam can be done in the office as well to determine where the pain may be.

If the pain is caused instead by the collision/fight it is still possible that function will return to the leg, and this will usually happen in 3-5 days with resting of the leg as well as proper food and nutrition during this time.

The best way to determine if there is nerve damage is to pinch the webbing of the foot, and find something with a rough edge like a rock and poke the toes, webbing and foot parts. If your goose pulls away, or responds to the pain, the nerve is likely not damaged or is damaged mildly. The degree of strength they use to pull the limb away will help you determine that.

If there is no strength in the leg at all, and he does not fight you when you are pulling on the limb, or trying to get a response, then it is possible that the nerve has been damaged completely. You can still see if there is response in 3-5 days (up to one week) with rest. I would recommend caging or confining to a small area if possible with food and water available. But, if there is no strength and no response at all to start off with, it is unlikely that the leg will recover and euthanasia may be the best option in that case.

If the bird will not eat or drink during this time, it is also a very bad prognosis.

Without knowing more about if it is fractured though I can not really tell you how the progression of healing will go. Some fractures can also heal with a splint and lots of rest. A pelvic fracture though is unlikely to heal and the bird is unlikely to be able to walk on it again.
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