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DocB, Bird Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 54
Experience:  I have practiced Avian Medicine for 7+ years .
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Hi! I have a 3 year old female african grey, stuffy nose, with

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Hi! I have a 3 year old female african grey, stuffy nose, with discharge on her beak. She is eating and drinking.Can someone recomend something? Baby tylenol? how much?
Thank you for your question. I am a licensed veterinarian and hope I can be of service. If my answer is helpful please click the Green ACCEPT.

I am sorry to hear that Kiki is not feeling well. African Grey's are often more prone to sinus infections and upper respiratory infections. This can be because of a variety of reasons such as incomplete diet, poor substrate in bird cage, environment, exposure to fungus/mold, bacterial infection, viral infection, and the list goes on. Plus when birds "get congested" the stuff is very thick and difficult for the bird to clear on its own. In the clinic we can flush the nose and loosen up the discharge and help the bird remove it. In many cases if the birds has been sick for awhile then we have to actually drain the sinuses by means of minor surgery.

Once a bird like an African Grey gets a stuffy nose as you describe and discharge it is IMPERITIVE that they be seen by an avian veterinarian. This is because it will be important to culture the stuff from the nose to see if it is bacterial and if so what antibiotic the bacteria will be sensitive to so that you can get rid of the infection. It is also important to see if there is also a fungal infection and to treat for this or to try and prevent this.

Doing what your doing by trying to create mist - warm humidifier is a good idea BUT DO NOT USE Vicks this can be irritating to the birds sensitive sinus system. The other issue is making sure any humidifier is clean - they are often breeding grounds for bacteria and fungus. It sounds like you are using a pot with water. This can be an issue if the pot is coated with Teflon or other chemicals - THESE ARE TOXIC TO BIRDS.

The best is to put them in the shower with you and let them get the steam that way.

Tylenol or aspirin can be used in birds. This is for pain but will not help with the congestion or possible infection. Tylenol can also cause liver issues. There should be clinics open today -Saturday and would recommend Kiki be seen. Aspirin can be given as follows 5mg of a children's aspirin per 1kg of body weight by mouth every 8-12 hours for a few days. So you need a gram scale to know your birds weight - your vet can give you this. This can be given . You can also give Pediaprofen (ibuprofen for kids) at 5 mg per 1 kg of body weight by mouth every 8-12 hours. As with any medication if the bird is not healthy and has any underlying organ issues like with the liver or kidney this can be dangerous.

To find an avian vet in your area you can go to the following website:

Please make sure to discuss with your vet Kiki's diet to make sure you have her on a balanced diet: 70-80% pellets from either Lafeber, Harrison's, Zupreem, or Roudybush with high quality table foods. Then 15% or so can be fruits seeds, nuts, etc.

I really like this avian vets website as her bird owner handouts go into good detail about caring for your bird diet and housing.

To summarize: Kiki needs to be seen by an avian veterinarian ASAP. What you are describing cannot be treated with aspirin or tylenol and needs to be evaluated by a vet to determine what medication to give which will be a prescription and NOT available over the counter.

Please let me know if you have further questions and I hope Kiki is feeling better soon.
DocB and 2 other Bird Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I currently live in an area far from a vet. Lots of snow. I can access penicilin from a pharmacy, but getting to a vet that specializes in aviary animals is a big problem.I need to medicate her myself. What type of penicillin if needed do I need?
I can understand how frustrating it is when there is a lot of snow. Are there any small animal vets close by. They could at least due a culture and start Kiki on antibiotics.

Amoxicillin and ampicillin are penicillin antibiotics that we will give to birds. The problem is the absorption orally is poor and it is not affective against many of the common gram-negative infections seen in birds. When we give penicillins we often use injectable forms. For a sinusitis, if that is what this is then one of the Fluorquinolones is more effective like Ciprofloxacin or Enrofloxacin. I might use Trimethoprim/sulfa. The use of two antibiotics might be necessary. Of course in the clinic, we would start the antibiotics while the culture was pending (can take 48-72 hours for results). Ideally the bird would be hospitalized for supportive care - subcutaneous or IV fluids, sinus flush to loosen the mucous and also apply some medications topically. Kiki will need to have her blood drawn as well and possibly X-rays if her lungs are not clear or to see how bat the congestion is in her sinuses.

I wish you luck and I wish I could give you a remedy over the internet that you could pick up at your local pharmacy.

There is no way I can tell you which antibiotic to use and the dose over the internet because they all require a prescription. I cannot advise you on the dose for penicillin because straight penicillin is not generally used in birds and I am not sure what type of penicillin some have anecdotal reports of them being toxic in birds.

You are going to need to see a veterinarian. I would call the closet avian vet to you and speak to them. They may know of a small animal vet closer to you.

In the meantime until you can get to a vet keep Kiki warm and do daily showers so that she can sit in the moist bathroom for 30 minutes. The key is humidity, hydration, warmth, and eating.