The photos and below information are courtesy of Mandy and Paul - Breeder of Finches, Canaries and Other Exotic Birds - Singing Wings Aviary - www.singing-wings-aviary.com
There will be times when you will need to trim your bird's nail.
This task becomes fairly easy with time. The hardest part is learing how to hold the bird correctly while trimming the nails.
If the bird is fairly tame you can hold it as illustrated below otherwise you have to hold it's head between your index and middle finger so it can not attempt to bite you. This holding method is pictured above.
If you feel that you are not experienced enough to trim your bird's nail you can always take them to a local vet or breeder.
Perhaps, they could demonstrate or do it for you. Do not neglect your bird's nails simply because, "You Do Not Know How".
If you look at most small bird's nails you can see they are transparent. It's a little harder if the nails are dark.
You do not want to cut close to the quick (the red area that supplies blood to the nail).
Trim the nail below the quick with small, sharp nail cutters.
If you happen to cut into the quick the bird's nail will start bleeding. Do not ignore this.
It may seem like no big deal but the bird can actually bleed to death.
Some people choose to use a styptic pencil or blood stopper powder but the blood clot can be knocked off by the bird.
The best remedy to stop the bleeding is to cauterize it. This basicaly means charring the nail.
You can do this by holding the tip of the nail that is bleeding over a lighter flame for 1 second or you can light a match blow it out and quickly place the hot match to the tip of the nail. If the nail is not charred correctly you may have to try again.
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