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Dr. Pat
Dr. Pat, Bird Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 3596
Experience:  25+ years working primarily or exclusively with birds
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My bird flew into the toilet and he doesn't look good. Is

Customer Question

My bird flew into the toilet and he doesn't look good. Is there anything I can do now for him.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Pat replied 1 year ago.
When did this happen? Was it clean water? How long was he in there? What exactly is he doing? What kind of bird? Even if it was clean water with no chemicals or other in it, a near-drowning in freshwater is a very serios and life-threatening problem. You need to take him in immediately to a vet with bird expereience and experience with near-drowning cases. At the very least he needs ICU with warmth, oxygen, sc fluids and tube feeding. He very likely needs more than that. If there were cleaning or toilet-hangers in there, chances of chemical pneumonia is very high and he needs specific treatment. Take any products in with you to the vet. If there was waste of any sort, he may have been exposed to pathogens and will need appropraite cleaning and antibiotic treatments. Your job is to keep the bird warm, safe, quiet, and confined; and to provide adequate hydration and calories.Move the bird to a box or carrier with soft towels in the bottom, no perch, and food and water in low bowls that can be reached easily. Put the whole thing on a heating pad on low or medium. Check it frequently, no overheating allowed! Keep the unit partially covered, warm and quiet. White paper towels or white cloth towels will show the true color of the droppings. Small animal/reptile boxes are great for this purpose.The bird, bowls and unit must be kept very clean. Here are some helpful links:https://www.pinterest.com/awepono/emergency-care/ Do not try to force food or water. Pedialyte or electrolyte replacer can help but many birds do not like them; when in doubt, plain warm water is best. They can hydrate from oral fluids almost as quickly as IV if the GI is functioning properly. You can offer warm cooked rice, pancakes, cornbread, grapes, melon, greens in addition to normal food.Pet/feed store medications and home remedies are harmful, ineffective, immuno-suppressive, and make them much worse and may interfere with the veterinarian's diagnosis and treatment. Do not use them. Homeopathy and natureopathic techniques do not work in avians and can actually be very dangerous.I know it is expensive, but you may not have many home options, because the first thing you need a vet for is to find out what is going on. Treatment is only as good as the diagnosis. If you call around, you may find a vet to work within your means.I really must stress that you need a bird-experienced person, and not just a vet who advertises that they care for birds. You need to take your bird to see an avian-experienced veterinarian ASAP for complete examination, diagnosis and appropriate treatment. Check https://aav.site-ym.com/?page=basiccare click on "find a vet"
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for responding. At this time he looks much better. We took him outside to dry in the sun and helped his feathers along with a small towel. He looked so helpless I was really scared because he was hardly moving. He's an Indian Ringneck, young, just learned to fly. The toilet was clean. I don't think he was in there longer than five minutes but I'm not exactly sure. He really looks so much better thank God. He's already flying again and is squacking away, he's produced two dropping since the incident. It looks like he'll be fine. Thank you again for responding.
Expert:  Dr. Pat replied 1 year ago.
You are very lucky. I am glad he is feeling a little better. Many birds die this way, so it is great that you were able to rescue him. Good incentive to keep the lid down. I actually trained several of my own birds to "swim"--I taught them to float in a bucket filled to the rim. Hopefully to diminish any panic and frantic attempts to escape. But still, better to shut the bathroom door AND close the lid. Training the people in the house is much harder.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Agreed. We were all pretty upset. My daughter who found him thought he was dead. We are so lucky he's ok. Lessons learned. Thank you again for responding, it is much appreciated.
How do I train him to swim? Just have him sit in water and watch over him as he does?
Expert:  Dr. Pat replied 1 year ago.
I supported them with my cupped hand until they were comfortable, only a few sessions. Then slowly each time let them float free. Just like a kid. they put their wings out on the surface and just calmly floated. I was there the whole time and praising them. It probably would not work with a bird that was really panicky to begin with.

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