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My cockatiel keep picking on his toe! And then he

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My cockatiel keep picking...

My cockatiel keep picking on his toe! And then he regurgitates. What could be the cause of this?

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Hopefully it didn't make a mess. Did your bird eat anything unusual?

No, it’s been going on for over an year. We took him to a vet, and she said it was anxiety, but we are worried he may hve an infection

Veterinarian's Assistant: OK. The Expert will know what to do. Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about your bird?

He is usually active. Just a normal bird. But I noticed he has wattery feces

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Bird
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Answered in 4 hours by:
1/3/2018
Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 months ago
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 35,562
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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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.

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Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 months ago

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. Can you upload a photo(s) of his toe to our conversation? You can upload photos by using the paperclip or add file icon in the toolbar above your message box (if you can see those icons on your particular device) or you can use an external app such as dropbox.com/ Please check that the photo(s) is in focus prior to uploading it. You're correct to consider a bacterial infection in an area that had been traumatized for such a length of time.

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Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 months ago
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Customer
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Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 months ago

Ah! I see what you mean. His regurgitation and attempt to alleviate the discomfort in his oral cavity/oropharynx (back of his throat) with his toes should prompt the attention of an avian vet (www.aav.org) who will take a look into your bird’s mouth as part of a thorough physical examination and is likely to examine a swab of the oral cavity for abnormal numbers of either bacteria, yeast, or parasites. A good exam will also check for any growths or tumors. Nutritional imbalances are a common cause of illness in our pet birds. What has his diet consisted of, please? Seeds should compose less than 20% of his diet. A diet of mainly seed and nuts has excessive fat, carbohydrates, and phosphorus; marginal protein; adequate vitamin E, and are deficient in amino acids, calcium, available phosphorus, sodium, manganese, zinc, iron, vitamins A, D3 (necessary for efficient absorption of calcium), K, and B12, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, choline, and available niacin. 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.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I live in Brazil and it’s hard to find vets that take care of birds. Most of them are limited to cats and dogs. His diet consist mainly of seeds. We have two other cockatiels (his mom and his dad) and they don’t seem to have this problem. His mom has lost a lot of feathers that haven’t grown back and also has wattery feces, but doesn’t pick on her toes! Could it be an infection? What kind?
Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 months ago

I understand. Yes, bacterial infection should be considered secondary to vitamin A deficiency in a "seed junky". Hypovitaminosis A causes changes in the mucous membranes. For now, add a water soluble avian vitamin such as Oasis brand to their water at half of the recommended dose so as not to make their water distasteful. Add a calcium supplement such as Calcivet or Calciboost to their water. These supplements are available in pet/feed stores. Avoid over the counter antibiotics designed to be placed in their water. They won't be effective if only because an ill bird won't drink enough to medicate itself properly.

Mom sounds as if she's malnourished as well. See what you can do about getting them to eat better. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I’ll make these changes. Hope they get better. Thank you for your attention!
Bird Specialist: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 7 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.

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