Bird Veterinary

Have Bird Questions? Ask a Bird Specialist.

Ask a Veterinarian,
Get an Answer ASAP!

My african grey has stopped talking and is breathing heavy…

Customer Question
my african grey has stopped...
my african grey has stopped talking and is breathing heavy please help
Submitted: 3 years ago.Category: Bird Veterinary
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Bird Veterinary Question
Customer reply replied 3 years ago
also I bought her a new cage yesterday?
Answered in 48 minutes by:
5/22/2015
Bird Veterinarian: Dr. B., Bird Veterinarian replied 3 years ago
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Bird Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 22,824
Experience: As a veterinary surgeon, I have spent a lot of time with bird cases and I'm happy to help you.
Verified
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.
I must say I am quite concerned about your lass, especially if she is showing signs of breathing issues. This laboured breathing suggests that she may not be able to exchange oxygen as well as she normally has been able to do. So, as her breathing is abnormal, it is prudent to have her seen as soon as possible. Because if she is struggling to breath, then this is a *red flag of urgency* and she may need her vet to put her on oxygen to stabilize while addressing what is causing her respiratory disease.
The problem I am sure you will appreciate with birds to that they do a very good job of covering up when they are sick. This is because as a prey species, attention to your illness will make you a target for predation. So, if we are even seeing her like this then we need to pay attention and address this aggressively before it can become an even more serious issue. Too often we are the last to know when our birds are sick. And too often we only see signs of struggling when their condition is just too advanced for them to hide any longer. Therefore, bird instinct puts us human owners at a disadvantage for catching things early, and makes addressing the signs we are seeing now even more important. And while the cage may not be related (it does depend on what its made of, what its been in contact with), it is possible that the stress of a new cage has pushed her over the edge such that this respiratory issue has reached a critical point.
Now I am sure you can appreciate just like people, birds can show respiratory signs like this for a variety reasons. Specifically, a respiratory infection in this species can be caused by bacteria, fungus, parasitic, nutritional, and viral agents.
You will not be able to rule out most of these at home (a good physical examination +/- fecal or blood testing are the best measures to do so), but I do just briefly want to mention one differentials that does require you to assess your management of your lass. Specifically, we can see respiratory disease secondarily to nutritional issues. Birds are prone to vitamin A deficiency when they diet is unbalanced or if they are selectively grazing and filling up in the wrong foods (ie. sunflower seeds). If she is on an imbalanced or all seed/millet diet, then you might consider supplementing her diet with vitamin A or try to tempt her to eat some veggies or fruit. You can try leafy dark greens and vegetables (i.e. kale, squash, celery, carrots, corn), as well as fruits (i.e., bananas, grapes, apples, grapes, pears, etc). They can also have seeding grass, and dandelion (flowers, roots and leaves). The reason Vitamin A is so important is because birds with vitamin A deficiency issues can show respiratory signs and can often have sneezing, wheezing, nasal discharge, crusted or plugged nostrils, lethargy, depression, diarrhea, tail-bobbing, respiratory distress, thinness, poor feather color, swollen eyes, ocular discharge, anorexia, gagging, halitosis and a "slimy mouth". Therefore, while we need to rule out infectious agents as the root of the signs you are seeing, we must also consider a nutritional differential and/or component to your bird’s illness.
So, diet is something to keep in mind. But further to this, and critically important if she has started to have labored breathing is to get her vet involved to rule out those other differentials and initiate appropriate treatment urgently. You want your vet to examine your bird, have a listen of her chest and determine if there is a respiratory infection (and if so, to what extent). Depending on the vet’s exam findings, they will be able to advise you on which causative agent might be present, and guide you on diagnostics and treatment steps to get her well.
Overall, her heavy breathing is a serious concern here that we don't want to leave to linger. If she is struggling to breathe, then we do have to consider having her seen by her vet as soon as possible to get her help and address this respiratory disease. This will give you the best chance of helping address this and getting her back to breathing comfortably.
While you are sorting out veterinary care for her , if she looks chilled and fluffed up, then do make sure you are keeping her warm. You can cover three sides of the cage to keep heat in or consider moving her to a little hospital cage (one level with a soft substrate floor). You can use a heat lamp, or a heating pad under half her pen (do not put it in the cage) but do monitor closely. Alternatively, you can make a safe warmer for the bird from a clean sock filled 2/3rd full with uncooked white rice. Tie it closed and microwave (approx 1-1.5 min). Make sure to shake it before adding it to the cage, to allow the heat to distribute. Make sure its not too hot (as we don’t want to burn the bird. If it cools, you can re-warm as required). Whichever technique you use, do monitor the temperature closely, since we don’t want to overheat her (and we cannot be confident she would move her self if she grew too warm).
If you don't have a vet for her, you can check where you can find one at near you at:
AAV (http://www.aav.org/search/),
Avian web (http://www.beautyofbirds.com/recommendedvets.htm),
Lafeber database (http://lafeber.com/pet-birds/find-an-avian-vet/) or Birdsnway (http://www.birdsnways.com/birds/vets.htm).
Please take care,
Dr. B.
Ask Your Own Bird Veterinary Question
Was this answer helpful?
Ask Dr. B. Your Own Question
Dr. B.
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Bird Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 22,824
22,824 Satisfied Customers
Experience: As a veterinary surgeon, I have spent a lot of time with bird cases and I'm happy to help you.

Dr. B. is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found "JustAnswer" on my Google search -- you are now in my "Favorites" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete!

Bev & GeorgeBoca Raton, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!!

AlexLos Angeles, CA

Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult.

GPHesperia, CA

I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion.

JustinKernersville, NC

Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around.

EstherWoodstock, NY

Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know.

RobinElkton, Maryland

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Dr. Pat

Dr. Pat

Bird Veterinarian

3,596 satisfied customers

25+ years working primarily or exclusively with birds

Dr. Bob

Dr. Bob

Veterinarian

2,853 satisfied customers

35 years in general practice, including avian.

Dr. MD Stafford

Dr. MD Stafford

Veterinarian

233 satisfied customers

20 years in private practice, contract veterinarian Dickerson Park Zoo and attending veterinarian Missouri State University

Fiona Steel

Fiona Steel

Veterinarian

224 satisfied customers

BVMS MRCVS

Dr. Bruce

Dr. Bruce

Veterinarian

220 satisfied customers

15 years of experience as a small animal veterinarian

allpetsdr

allpetsdr

Veterinarian

142 satisfied customers

I have been practicing for 10 years. I work with exotic pets, dogs, cats, small ruminants, camelids and pigs.

Dr_Kitty

Dr_Kitty

Bird Veterinarian

122 satisfied customers

Mostly experience with chickens and ducks.

< Previous | Next >

Related Bird Veterinary Questions
He flew into the fan and got a chunk of feathers torn out.
he flew into the fan and got a chunk of feathers torn out. he just pooped and it looks like he has some blood in it … read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
I am worried a my bird pebbles. I don't know if it is male
hello and good evening. I am worried a my bird pebbles. I don't know if it is male or female. That being said he is not acting normal. he is usually very active and noisy. recently he is has been quit… read more
Yankmedic911
Yankmedic911
Wildlife Veterinarian
Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and
13 satisfied customers
My ducks look like they are getting sick. Changes in
My ducks look like they are getting sick. Changes in feathers and look odd around their eyes. I am worried please help. What can I do?… read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
He is loosing his feathers on hislower stomach. We have
He is loosing his feathers on hislower stomach . We have sprayed for mite … read more
S. August Abbott
S. August Abbott
Etiquette consultant
Doctoral Degree
260 satisfied customers
I have a week + old Turkey and his hock is swollen joint out
I have a week + old Turkey and his hock is swollen joint out of place. I placed it back and wrapped with coban. But now his foot is also swollen. … read more
Yankmedic911
Yankmedic911
Wildlife Veterinarian
Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and
13 satisfied customers
He fell in the toilet. It was clean and is a low water
He fell in the toilet. It was clean and is a low water toilet but he was very cold when I found him. He is warming up mow but there is no emergency avian vet near us … read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
We got a baby indian ringneck a few days ago, and it is
Hi there, we got a baby indian ringneck a few days ago, and it is making a whistling noise as it breaths in and out. it doesnt necessrily look distressed but now that I'm worried, I'm overthinking eve… read more
S. August Abbott
S. August Abbott
Etiquette consultant
Doctoral Degree
260 satisfied customers
I have a 3 year old hen who is having difficulty walking
I have a 3 year old hen who is having difficulty walking holds her tail down and is a lot of work to walk , she is unable to get on her perch but is laying isn't egg bound we checked- is eating normal… read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
I was reading about cockatiels and had a question. If a
hello, I was reading about cockatiels and had a question. If a cockatiel is wheezing, is wheezing just a cold? Or can wheezing ne more like heart, liver, etc?… read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
Disturbed a mother quail nesting, will she return to nest?
Disturbed a mother quail nesting, will she return to nest? If not what can I do? I feel so bad, did not know they were there. … read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
I found him dead this morning in his nest. I don't know, but
I don't know, but we noticed him usually stays on the floor or in his nest and he didn't groom or take a bath that frequently as he used to be. … read more
Dr. B.
Dr. B.
Bird Veterinarian
22,824 satisfied customers
Quaker parrot-age/sex unknown sitting on bottom of cage
Quaker parrot-age/sex unknown sitting on bottom of cage panting type breathing. Seems to be strong to move if it wants too, Has not ate or drank anything so far today. … read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
I have two parakeets and a cacatoo and my cacatoo seems to
Hello i have two parakeets and a cacatoo and my cacatoo seems to itch alot and its tail feathers seem to be broken or falling off and bleeding from the bottom … read more
Yankmedic911
Yankmedic911
Wildlife Veterinarian
Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and
13 satisfied customers
My african grey has diarrihia for las 2 days. Has diarriaha.
my african grey has diarrihia for las 2 days JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is wrong with your bird? Customer: has diarriaha JA: Where does your bird seem to hurt? Customer: dosen't seem to be in… read more
Yankmedic911
Yankmedic911
Wildlife Veterinarian
Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and
13 satisfied customers
Robin with one broken leg how to help. One broken leg. One
Young robin with one broken leg how to help JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is wrong with the bird? Customer: one broken leg JA: Where does the bird seem to hurt? Customer: one broken leg still at… read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
Swallan belly. Her name is beautiful she is 2 years old.
swallan belly JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is the bird's name and age? Customer: her name is beautiful she is 2 years old JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Be… read more
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin
Veterinarian
DVM
3 satisfied customers
My Indian Ringneck Parrot around 2 years old was attacked by
My Indian Ringneck Parrot around 2 years old was attacked by my 120 lb lab. She is eating and jumping around. Occasionally squeaking but not talking as usual. Says around 100 words. Is she brain damag… read more
Dr. Leah Hill
Dr. Leah Hill
Veterinarian
Doctor of Veterinary medicine
305 satisfied customers
4 to 5 year old cockatiel female shares a cage with male.
4 to 5 year old cockatiel female shares a cage with male. She has been staying at the bottom of the cage the past 2 days. She is eating pecking at th food on bottom of cage… read more
Dr. Jo
Dr. Jo
Veterinarian
BA
2 satisfied customers
Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Disclaimer: Information in questions, answers, and other posts on this site ("Posts") comes from individual users, not JustAnswer; JustAnswer is not responsible for Posts. Posts are for general information, are not intended to substitute for informed professional advice (medical, legal, veterinary, financial, etc.), or to establish a professional-client relationship. The site and services are provided "as is" with no warranty or representations by JustAnswer regarding the qualifications of Experts. To see what credentials have been verified by a third-party service, please click on the "Verified" symbol in some Experts' profiles. JustAnswer is not intended or designed for EMERGENCY questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals.

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x