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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 24348
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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Last week I picked up my families Conures from my son. She

Customer Question

Last week I picked up my families Conures from my son. She wasn't getting the care she deserves. shes about 14 yr old. I've been feeding her some fruit(she had this diet before he took her) and Conurer mix food. Her butt looks like a piece of water mellon. Its red. Otherwise she seems fine. She just ate. What should i do?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. You appear to be describing a cloacal prolapse.Cloacal prolapse can occur in any bird species (as well as in reptiles and amphibians) and is evidenced by moist or dried tissue protruding from the vent - the "red piece of watermelon". It is frequently associated with egg-laying, and may occur before, during or after the process. A calcium deficiency is usually at the root of the problem…the muscles, weakened by the lack of calcium, cannot contract as forcibly as is necessary, and the resultant straining pushes the cloaca outward. Weakness in other muscles such as the cloacal sphincter adds to the problem. Less commonly, a prolapse may be caused by an infection in the oviduct or cloaca.A prolapsed cloaca is a matter for an avian-oriented vet (please see here: www.aav.org) but there are a few things you can do at home.. Most important is prevention – assure that your birds, especially breeding hens, are in good health and are receiving optimal amounts of calcium and other minerals and vitamins. Primary seed eaters are often deficient in calcium, vitamin D3, B12, A, and K. Make sure that an avian vitamin such as over the counter Oasis brand is added to her water at half the labeled dose in order to not make her water distasteful. Calciboost or Calcivet is a calcium solution that can be added to her water as well. People food in the form of hard boiled egg yolk, dairy products, vegetables - the top of fresh greens, in particular - and fruits should always be offered . Pelleted diets such as can be found here: harrisonsbirdfoods.com/ and lafeber.com/pet-birds/ are nicely balanced.Upon noting a prolapse, you can try lubricating the tissue with a water-soluble product, such as KY Jelly. She should be kept warmed in an 80F environment which can be attained by shining a 100W bulb into her partially covered cage (not at night when she needs to sleep)or by taping a heating pad set on its lowest setting around her cage. The veterinarian may place a suture in the vent while the cloaca heals. Antibiotics will usually be given, as an extruded cloaca is susceptible to infection. If all else fails, or if too much time has elapsed and the tissue is beyond repair, surgery may be necessary. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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