Tuesday, September 22, 2009

what to do when your bird is ill

Sickness in budgies and other parrots

Parrots will mask/cover up their illness by instinct – this is self protection, as it doesn’t want to be seen by its flock as the weakest link… so when you notice your budgie/parrot is ill, it is usually in an advanced state of unwellness.

The things you might notice include:
Runny droppings over a few days
Fluffed up appearance
Lack of energy/sleeping more than usual
Eating less or not at all
Drooping wings
Drooping tail
Discharge from the nostrils

The best thing to do if you notice any of these signs is to immediately put the bird under a heat-lamp or give it some other source of heating. This alone can help significantly. The temperature to aim for is between 20-26 degrees celcius. You can make sure by keeping a thermometer under the lamp/ near the heat source. You can buy special heat lamps designed for ill animals from reptile and pet shops – if you can afford it… otherwise use an old tungsten bulb and make sure the cage is wrapped in cloth to insulate it… however DON’T EVER PUT THE BULB IN THE CAGE and make sure it is not too hot for them.

If your bird does not improve within 24 hours it would be wise to take it to a vet, preferably an avian vet, who can best determine exactly what’s wrong.

If your parrot has any of the following symptoms it is critical to get it to the vet ASAP:
Rasping or loud breathing
Prolapsed anus (vent)
Profuse bleeding
Broken legs or wings

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