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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 23777
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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One toe of my african grey is paralysed, Can i send you a

Customer Question

Hello!! one toe of my african grey is paralysed
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with your bird?
Customer: Can i send you a photo please?
JA: Where does your bird seem to hurt?
Customer: He is not in pain. This must have happened sometime ago but i have noticed it yesterday
JA: OK. No obvious pain. What is the bird's name and age?
Customer: Cocorico and age about 22 years old
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Cocorico?
Customer: If it is now a trauma.. then i start thinking if it has to with calcium lack but otherwise Cocorico is very healthy
Submitted: 19 days ago.
Category: Bird
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

Yes, I would very much like to see a photo, please. You can upload it by using the paperclip icon in the toolbar above your message box (if you can see that icon) or you can use an external app such as

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
Hello Dr Salkin,
Here is one photo.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

All of the digits appear to be functional in that photo. Which toe are you concerned about? The farthest right in the photo?

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
some more photos...
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
A see you the photo the right toe. She does not move the toe at all.. it is stuck upwards.. and when i touch it she does not react.
Customer: replied 19 days ago.
by the way i am based in Greece near Marathon village and my name is Panos
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

Thank you! There's no evidence of a fracture; instead, these digits are "sprung" - sprained, strained, and perhaps subluxated (minorly dislocated). The tincture of time should take care of it. We don't splint these nor is there a need for surgery. The metabolic rate of these birds is so rapid that healing can take place within as little as 3 weeks. If she's not sensing you touching it, nerve damage to that digit is likely. The nerve was likely to be stretched and torn at the same time that the tendons attaching the toe to the foot were stretched and torn. Nerves take longer to heal but can heal.

Make sure that her diet is well-balanced so she has the building blocks for tissue repair. Seeds should compose less than 20% of her diet. A diet of mainly seed and nuts has excessive fat, carbohydrates, and phosphorus; marginal protein; adequate vitamin E, and are deficient in amino acids, calcium, available phosphorus, sodium, manganese, zinc, iron, vitamins A, D3 (necessary for efficient absorption of calcium), K, and B12, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, choline, and available niacin. Ideally, a balanced pelleted diet such as can be found here: or here: should be fed as well as hard boiled egg yolk, pancakes and cornbread, the tops of fresh greens, dairy products such as yogurt and cheese, fresh fruits such as apples, pears, melon, kiwi, and berries, vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, beets, asparagus, cabbage, sweet potato, and squash, and even tiny pieces of meat.

Chairete, Panos!

Customer: replied 19 days ago.
You gave great of hope with this answer!!! I was really frustrated. Thank you!
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

You're quite welcome. If you find that she's getting that toe caught in things, you can tape the toe to the adjoining one which will act as a temporary splint. The only problem with doing so is that Cocorico isn't likely to leave that splint alone and so it might last a day if you're lucky! I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 16 days ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?


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