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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30306
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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Cockateil has bloody stools & is looking sick. Sydney age

Customer Question

Cockateil has bloody stools & is looking sick.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the bird's name and age?
Customer: Sydney age about 12 years
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Sydney?
Customer: Not chirping, fluffed up, listless.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Bird Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

Can you tell me, please, if Sydney is a male or female?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Male. The bloody stools happened since noon. He was fine this morning. Now he just perked up & was eating & chirping.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

Thank you. Please note that although he appears to be improving once a cockatiel acts ill he's already quite ill and in need of the attention of an avian-oriented vet (please see here: This is a protective mechanism because sick birds are attacked by other birds in the wild and within the flock. Sydney's symptoms of frank blood in his droppings, being fluffed (attempting to conserve heat), listlessness and being quiet are important symptoms but they're not pathognomonic (specifically indicative) of any one particular disorder.

Important considerations are cloacal (vent) diseases such as internal papilloma disease, cloacoliths (stones), cloacitis (inflammation due to infection), cloacal neoplasia (cancer becomes an important consideration at Sydney's age), and severe enteritis (inflammation in the intestinal tract due to infection or neoplasia).

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 Sydney'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 (29.4C) 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.

Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you. We appreciate your help.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 10 months ago.

You're quite welcome. 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.