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My name is ***** *****. We have a new cockatoo that has

Customer Question
My name is *****...

My name is ***** *****. We have a new young cockatoo that has suddenly become very lethargic.

Veterinarian's Assistant: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?

We have only had him a few days. He has been eating and drinking well. Tonight we came home and he was quiet but is now very subdued tired and all but floppy

Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: Bird Veterinary
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Answered in 4 hours by:
3/9/2016
Bird Veterinarian: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 2 years ago
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 35,542
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
Verified

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. We don't have many avian vets on this site. It's been a very stressful time for your young cockatoo and he's most susceptible to illness at this time.

It's important to note that once a cockatoo acts ill they're quite ill and in need of the attention of an avian-oriented vet (please see here: www.aav.org). This is a protective mechanism because sick birds are attacked by other birds in the wild. His symptoms of lethargy and weakness are important symptoms but they're not pathognomonic (specifically indicative) of any one particular disorder.

An avian-oriented vet might first treat symptomatically and supportively by providing supplemental fluids and electrolytes by needle and tube feeding a "recovery" food. Blood tests and cultures of your cockatoo's choana - the slit between his oral cavity and nose - and cloaca (vent) may be taken. Whole body X-rays can be quite helpful as well.

Until he can be attended to, please heat up his environment to 85F by means of a 100W bulb shined into his partially covered cage (not at night when he needs to rest) or by taping a heating pad set on its lowest setting to the sides of his cage. If he appears weakened remove his perches and put his food and water on the bottom of the cage along with him. Add a water soluble avian vitamin such as Oasis brand to his water at half of the recommended dose so as not to make his water distasteful. Add a calcium supplement such as Calcivet or Calciboost to his water. These supplements are available in pet/feed stores. Avoid over the counter antibiotics designed to be placed in his water. They won't be effective if only because an ill bird won't drink enough to medicate itself properly.

Nutritional imbalances are a common cause of illness in our pet birds. What has hisdiet consisted of, please? Seeds should compose less than 20% of his diet. Ideally, a balanced pelleted diet such as can be found here: www.harrisonsbirdfoods.com or here: www.lafeber.com/pet-birds 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.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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