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August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 7608
Experience:  Cert. Avian Specialist; Int. Assoc.Animal Behavior Consult; Pet Ind. Joint Advisory Council; author
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My daughters lovebird is wheezing. What can she do

Customer Question

My daughters lovebird is wheezing. What can she do
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird
Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.

When did this start and what do you mean by 'wheezing'? Is the bird still perched or at the bottom of the cage? Please help me understand more of what you're seeing and hearing

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Perched. Off and on since Thursday. Had liver biopsy in hospital. Was in for 2 weeks and released yesterday. The vet noticed it. Was better by Friday however tonight got worse. A little better now. They are testing for Fungul infection. Will not have results till Monday. The bird is with my daughter in Washington. I live in Ca. I was looking to see if there was any treatment that could help Petrie breath easier.
Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.

I own a macaw rescue here in N. California and these are the number one most 'allergen sensitive' bird among psittacines. The question is what can your daughter do to help her companion breathe easier. Thank you for not asking for a diagnosis. Your daughter is already doing all the right things there. Veterinary intervention is the only way to know for sure what the long term treatment is.

For right now I can give you what I do for the macaws that become congested: If your bird is perching, cover the cage on all sides and top, leaving only the front uncovered. Place a regular vaporizer without anything in it on the floor in front of the cage. The warm, misted air and enclosed area can often be soothing. Be care to not aim the vaporizer right into the cage or even put it on the same level - you don't want to impair the breathing or overheat the bird

If the bird starts to lose the ability to perch or seems more distressed, you might want to make a brooder box

For a makeshift brooder, use a small box lined with soft clothes like tee shirts.

Use a thick, clean sock and fill it ¾ with plain, raw white rice. Knot the end and microwave it for about 1 ½ minutes. Shake it afterwards to distribute the heat and be sure it's not too hot. Tuck this in just under the cloths.
A heating pad under one half of the box is also helpful, set on low. This is one of the few times I’d ever use both heat sources if necessary to maintain incubation temp (90-105 degrees).
If ever using an electric source for heating anything in anyway, please be vigilant and constantly double checking carefully.
Gently drape a light cover over this box to further help hold heat in and keep light low.
Seeing her vet on an urgent care basis may also be necessary -- the vet will have options we cannot duplicate at home.

Let me know how it goes ok? My computer is terribly sluggish right now so I'm signing off for the night. I'll be back tomorrow a.m. ok?

Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.

Rainy and cold here in N Cal - how about you? How is the lovey doing so far today?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your advice. The lovebird was not doing well this morning so my daughter took him in to see the veterinarian. Petrie is home now and resting. Veterinarian said to put a light near the cage to keep him warm. Waiting for fungal lab report and will confer with bird specialist tomorrow.
Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.

Make sure he can move away from the light if he so chooses. Watch for any open-beak breathing which may indicate he's getting too warm.

Your daughter is to be highly commended. Obviously you have taught her the utmost respect for life, no matter how small

Keep me in the loop if you would