Help! I am taking care of a friends parakeets for the holidays. Two days ago the female started puffing up her feathers

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Customer: Help! I am taking care of a friends parakeets for the holidays. Two days ago the female started puffing up her feathers during the daytime. Now she is continually puffing her feathers, shudders intermittently and burying her head under one of her wings. There a no bird vets answering their phones. I have now covered part of the cage, put a heating pad on one side to help warm her up. Anything else I can do until tomorrow when I can get her to a vet?
Answered by Bird Brains in 9 mins 12 years ago
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Bird Brains
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8 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Bird Veterinary, Exotic Animal Medicine, Avian Medicine, Poultry Veterinary Medicine

Thank you for the emial in regards XXXXX XXXXX pet situation...I have a couple of questions that will help me in making sure I provide the best answer possible to you:

 

When are you putting the birds to bed for the night?

 

What color are the birds droppings?

 

How is the birds food and water intake?

 

How is the birds demeanor other than obviously being sick? is she still sociable and moving?

 

How exactly do you have the heating pad set up and at what strength (ie low med high) ?

 

Where are you located and what is the ambient temperature outside / in the house / and finally in the cage (approx is okay)?

 

Is this bird sharing a cage with other birds?

 

are there any stressful stimuli in the house...loud music, children other pets etc?

 

i know you are sitting the birds and some of this might come off as strange to be asking you...but birds are finicky animals and everything you tell me will help make sure my answer is the best you can recieve.

 

thank you in advance for your help...

Customer
1. Christmas eve I was gone all night, so the bird cage was partially covered. I do not methodically put a cover on their cage at a certain time.
2. Bird droppings are black and white.
3. Food and water are fresh and clear.
4. Both seem to chatter and chirp, sing with music.
5. After a recommendation form a google-search I just put the heating pad one the side of the cage-temp in on medium.
6. I live in New Mexico, the house temp is around 65 daytime, 60 at night.
7. The two birds share the relatively large cage ( 3 x3).
8. No loud music, other pets or little children.
Kathy

Thank you for getting back to me with all of those questions... based on your responses I suggest the following:

 

Firstly, the cage needs to be covered when its bedtime. Birds that do not get enough rest are stressed and prone to illness...covering the cage in the evening is a comfort thing. A routine is key to a birds comfort.

 

As the birds are singing and chirping I feel that a disruption in sleep pattern in probably the culprit here.

 

As far as the heating pad is concerned firstly place it on low under a towel so that it aids warmth but the heat in non-intrusive. Also observe if the bird is frequenting the warmer side versus the unheated side. If they prefer the warmth go ahead an place the pad over the entire bottom...once again on the lowest setting.

 

Make sure the bird is eating and consuming fluids normally. If the bird is not taking in liquids frequently it may be developing a cold...at that point you can pick up some children's unflavored pedialyte from the store (it has to be unflavored) mix it 1/2 with water by the tsp, with an eye dropper you can pick up from CVS / Walgreen's etc place a drop at the very tip of the beak...do not force the bird to drink it and if she refuses try again after 30 mins or so. It is important to place the fluid at the end of the beak as any higher and the bird can inhale it which is a bad thing.

 

This should take care of any issues you currently have and would alleviate the need of going to a vet until tomorrow...you may actually see improvement pretty quickly and avoid the vet all together.

 

Please click the green "accept" button...and feel free to reach me using the reply tab for any follow up and to let me know how she is doing. : )

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