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Ask August Abbott, CAS Your Own Question
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 7607
Experience:  Cert. Avian Specialist; Int. Assoc.Animal Behavior Consult; Pet Ind. Joint Advisory Council; author
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My cocktail is jurking her hesd to the right and whimpering

Customer Question

My cocktail is jurking her hesd to the right and whimpering
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with the bird?
Customer: She has no strength
JA: Where does the bird seem to hurt?
Customer: Not hurt as far as I can tell
JA: OK. No obvious pain. What is the bird's name and age?
Customer: She is a friends bird that called md to help but iv never seen nothing like this baby is her name and she is between 3 and 6 yrs old
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about And?
Customer: She said she started doing this about 8 hours ago
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Bird
Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.
What sort of diet has she been on? Largely a seed eater?
Expert:  August Abbott, CAS replied 1 year ago.
OK, it appears you are not online at the moment so I'll just go ahead with a bunch of things that you can do right now and talk about when you see your vet FIRST: Get him safe, comfortable and try to insure he makes it until able to get to doctor This is an at home 'hospital room' for a bird 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 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. --- When a bird seems to be having seizures, falling off perches, showing symptoms of spasms, difficulty or inability to grasp or control their feet, it is frequently the result of hypocalcemia. Of course there are other conditions this could also be, but one of the more frequently seen is hypocalcemia. If your companion has convinced you to feed a predominantly seed diet over the years and most especially if getting sunflower seeds out of you, the chances are even greater that this is the problem. Your vet (if not an avian vet) may not be aware that blood calcium levels are deceptive. They will often fall within the normal range (8.0 - 13.0 mg/dl), so an ionized calcium level needs to be done. Treatment will vary, but usually include calcium supplementation of some form and full spectrum lighting exposure (Vitamin D is necessary to properly use the calcium intake in both our birds and in us). You can offer your bird some natural mozzarella cheese, a regular spoon of cottage cheese, yogurt or even a Tums (I'd limit it to 1/2 tab every other day) and try to use nothing but all natural products/foods. Calcium supplementation is helpful, but only if this is the problem to begin with. That's why a hands on vet exam is necessary in each and every case. Other causations might be liver/kidney problems or tumors - and caught early they are far more successfully treated, as is the hypocalcemia. More information about symptoms and causes here: http://www.avianweb.com/seizures.html http://www.theparrotsocietyuk.org/index.php/Hypocalcaemia/55 ***************************Also to be considered and ruled out are: central nervous system diseases such as a brain tumor or infection, head trauma, hyperthermia, liver disease, metabolic disturbances (hyperglycemia) and toxicity from lead, zinc, aflatoxins and certain insecticides. Let me forewarn you here: If he seems to be recovering and getting well, do NOT trust it. You'll see symptoms again when he becomes too weak to 'mask' (pretends to be fine), but the underlying cause will be much worse and you'll have wasted valuable time in seeking treatment. Birds haven't evolved from dinosaurs by being easy prey. Masking (faking health) has helped bring them some 65 million years (likely more) past watching their brother dinosaurs go extinct Let me know how you make out ok?