Coco saw the vet today - Talk Parrots Forums

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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-12-2013, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
 
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Coco saw the vet today

Coco saw the vet today, and what a wild ride! I ended up driving 1.5 hrs to an avian specialist and she was able to read his old leg band. He was born in '89! The ol boy is 24 years old!

She was really surprised, because she used to raise Princess Parrots and knew all about the large Aussie parakeets, and she said they rarely make it past 20 let alone at least 24.

The good news is, that she didn't feel it was necessary to run any blood tests, as she listened to his breathing and looked at his poop and she said he looks really good. She said she'd feel comfortable putting him in the same room with other birds, but to be safe and quarantine anyway, of course.

The bad news is, he's probably near the end of his lifespan. He might have a few years, or maybe only a few months. But the worst part is that his lack of attention to foot care has left him with bumblefoot and arthritis. He's lost the use of a toe on each foot entirely, and all the toes are stiff and weak. She was able to fix his nails, and I set up his cage to be suited for an arthritic bird (luckily I have had experience with a very arthritic Amazon parrot). We hope that with encouraged activity and attention to his feet's health, that he might regain some use of his feet, but who knows.

It's pretty guaranteed that his feet's ill health is from his life in a cage with poor perches and not his age, as he is getting better at flying every time he tries.

So he might only have a few months, or maybe he'll have a few years. I'll hope for the latter because he deserves it. If he dies with me, all I can hope for is that he dies comfortable and knowing he's loved.

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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 04:37 AM



 
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I recently adopted a dusky lory who was arthritic and had both liver and kidney disease. He was about 20 years old and once he was moved to me he didn't make it more than a week. He'd been hospitalised at the vet the week before travel for breathing issues but it turned out his liver was so big it was pushing on his lungs

I still think, regardless of how the bird looks, a psittacosis test at the minimum should be done. I'm surprised to the vet didn't recommend it. I have dealt with a psittacosis out break 2 times and have lost many birds because of it. The first time around you'd never of known the bird was carrying it and I didn't test her and put her in my aviary with the rest. They all dropped dead about 2 weeks later. Ironically she's still going, fine and dandy after treatment. After that though the second time I actually bought it through the house. Quarantine can only be done properly if the birds are in a separate building with completely different air space and the birds have a complete blood profile. There's not much point doing it otherwise. Anything can be shed and cling to your clothes. I lost some that way too. It's horrible and I try to force everybody into testing so they don't make the same mistake I did. I know I'm pushy, but it broke my heart and I couldn't bare to know it was going to happen to more people. Working at my avian vets we'd see it all the time too. Don't think there was a day that went by where we didn't have one in!

Such a shame he's arthritic. I read something recently on unusual treatments for it so I will send you a PM with it in when I find it

It's great you've taken him on knowing his issues and age. Not many people do it. Loads of people asked why I took on Dusty and I said it didn't matter to me as long as I could make him happy


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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 12:03 PM Thread Starter
 
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I still think, regardless of how the bird looks, a psittacosis test at the minimum should be done. I'm surprised to the vet didn't recommend it. I have dealt with a psittacosis out break 2 times and have lost many birds because of it. The first time around you'd never of known the bird was carrying it and I didn't test her and put her in my aviary with the rest. They all dropped dead about 2 weeks later. Ironically she's still going, fine and dandy after treatment. After that though the second time I actually bought it through the house. Quarantine can only be done properly if the birds are in a separate building with completely different air space and the birds have a complete blood profile. There's not much point doing it otherwise. Anything can be shed and cling to your clothes. I lost some that way too. It's horrible and I try to force everybody into testing so they don't make the same mistake I did. I know I'm pushy, but it broke my heart and I couldn't bare to know it was going to happen to more people.
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I totally agree. And I plan to have the test done anyway. As it is, there is no way for me to quarantine properly (i.e. different air supply), so as you said, little point in it. I have even heard of cases where a bird with psittacosis was more of a carrier and never got sick from it, but infected other birds.

It sounds kind of bad, but if I had anything other than budgies, I'd never have even taken him without a way to quarantine in another building. *sigh* Now I'll be all worried about it. I think psittacosis is less common here, but the test isn't too much money.

If he drops dead in a week, then I'll know there wasn't much hope anyway, but if he's still kicking, I'd like to do the full array of blood work just for peace of mind. I love all my birds, but seeing the state of this guy, I just hope it's worth the risk. If my budgies die, I'll be heartbroken for sure. Of course, if I'd known he was so old, I would have probably said no because the stress of moving him is probably worse than where he was, though I would have told the lady to go get his feet treated immediately.

The other worry about psittacosis isn't even about the other birds but the fact that technically people can get it too, which... though unlikely, is an unpleasant prospect.

Thank you for the support and feedback though. I would like to hope he'll be around long enough to feel better and be happy when it is his time, but I know that these guys are high stress already, and in his condition, the end might be close for him.

Question though, hypothetically, if a bird tests positive for any contagious diseases, will the vet give you extra medicine to treat any other birds that may or may not have contracted it? --- nvm just called the vet, they said each bird would have to be brought in, but they might be able to bundle the price.

Man, it must have been so terrible with those outbreaks for you. I can't even imagine. I mean, I go into work and see animals who have died all the time, or the constant trickle of dead fish, then when I worked in the lab and the marine specimens I was taking care of would die for some crazy impossible reason (like electrocution or a t-storm knocked the power out and the pumps needed restarting, etc), but never were they MY babies. Lots of tears are shed all the time for them, just worrying if they're happy and whatnot. And I've already cried over Coco preparing myself for his death or what-have-you. Sometimes I think it's better to be ignorant rather than paranoid. It seems paranoia has this self-fullfilling-prophecy about it, or causing oneself angst when it's out of one's control, while remaining ignorant of possible downfalls leaves one less burdened by guilt and wracked with stress and worry, and when something bad comes, you can shake it of faster rather than wallowing in "should haves" and "could haves." When it comes to pets and passions, it really opens up questions about life.

I'm getting philosophical on a parrot site. >.<

Last edited by techta; 08-13-2013 at 12:40 PM.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 12:42 PM



 
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Would it shock you then if I told you budgies were probably the biggest carrier of psittacosis going? It is so common and as they're so common they can spread it like wildfire that happened to me. I had birds carrying it with not a single symptom, next thing I know I'm rushing to the vets with a stack of birds who need putting down and some died before I could get them there

Yes I am always very, very wary of getting any health issue and when my birds became ill with it I lost my mind for a little while I was so scared. My avian vet said it is unlikely it would affect you much unless you were very, very young or pretty old. Some people do get it regardless though, including the other avian vet working there!

Yes they will tell you to treat your entire flock if he has anything contagious. My flock is enormous so doing that twice over was NOT cheap it does make more sense
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
 
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Would it shock you then if I told you budgies were probably the biggest carrier of psittacosis going? It is so common and as they're so common they can spread it like wildfire that happened to me. I had birds carrying it with not a single symptom, next thing I know I'm rushing to the vets with a stack of birds who need putting down and some died before I could get them there.
No it doesn't surprise me, especially since they are bred so often in mass quantities. Yeah, it's definitely something to worry about. It's something I don't like about my job at the pet store, since we don't close our budgies behind glass, I'm usually covered in dust and feathers and such and I hate bringing that home.

haha, now I'm all worried cuz the birds are so quiet and poofy and sleeping all day today. It's most likely because they just got moved into my new apartment after spending the last month at my parents house where it's very busy and noisy, and now it's quiet and all new to them. I'm like "OH GOD THEY'RE DYING." But I always think that and then nothing ever happens. Watch this be the one time, after all the contaminants and illnesses they've inadvertently contacted, they get sick.

HOW DO YOU LIVE WITH SUCH STRESS? XD This is why I am not Pre-Vet. I am Wildlife and Fisheries, but I just want to open a restaurant on the coast and have my one special buddy parrot go everywhere with me.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 01:45 PM



 
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I won't be working at a vets again. I recently lost the placement due to them needing more room for veterinary students so I no longer work there. I will continue taking my birds to them and even my other animals I'm going back into education to start Animal Management (again) next month and hopefully after that I will then have a full time job working with animals, preferably birds. I took 10 steps forward and 8 back! I've had a year out of everything but I absolutely cannot wait to get my life back on track again

When I go into a pet store with birds I tend to strip off and shower when I get home, safest thing I can do. I became so paranoid about anything happening I'm the same. I ran hundreds of 's worth of tests for Darwin, my black capped lory, when he plucked a few feathers from one of his legs. After all of the testing it turned out he was hormonal... sigh

Edit: Also, up until now almost nobody on here had red/crimson winged parakeets and now we suddenly have 2 members asking about them
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 01:49 PM
 
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coco

aw that is so sad and so sweet.. I hope for you and coco that he has a few years left, he is a very beautiful bird.. hang in there.... say a prayer for him.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 03:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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I ran hundreds of 's worth of tests for Darwin, my black capped lory, when he plucked a few feathers from one of his legs. After all of the testing it turned out he was hormonal... sigh

Edit: Also, up until now almost nobody on here had red/crimson winged parakeets and now we suddenly have 2 members asking about them
Yeah, I have a max of $300 in my pocket on any given day, and I have a bunch of money tied up on a convention (like a smaller version of ComicCon) in less than a month, so I'm totally broke at the moment haha. So if someone gets sick it's like "well... I hope we get it on the first go." A big reason I'm not investing in my Forever Friend, until I have stable income.

YOu sure the other person wasn't me? I sent a PM to you about one. If not, I'd love to talk to them!
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 03:39 PM



 
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Nope, two different people! One is hand raising them we have similar expos here that I go to but I don't cosplay. But the stuff they sell is SO expensive, I never come back with anything!
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hand raising huh? In the US??? Probably not, they are unheard of here.

Oh I'm cosplaying for sure. I dont know if you've ever heard/seen the show Supernatural, but I'm doing Crowley for two days and maybe Dean, but that's gonna be last minute if so, and I'm cosplaying a different character from the book Good Omens also called Crowley, but unrelated haha.
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 05:01 PM



 
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Only cosplay I can actually pull off is Itachi from Naruto

No I believe they're not from the US. They're uncommon here in the UK too. Mostly Barraband's and Princess of Wales


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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
 
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Coco was super active tonight. He was calling when I came home and started calling loudly when I came in. His previous owner said he does that when he's hungry, and sure enough when I rustled the food bag, he came out of his cage on his own and few down! He even explored for a little bit and then stepped on up on my hand for a sunflower seed! I wasn't going to force him into anything this soon, but he just did it on his own. And he just went back to his cage. All that probably wore him out haha XD Old man!
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-14-2013, 03:17 AM



 
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Well that's good! Was he not hand raised or hand tame?


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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-14-2013, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
 
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Well that's good! Was he not hand raised or hand tame?


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He was not hand tamed for the 8 years she had him, but what his life was like for the other 16 years we'll never know. I was only told he doesn't like other birds much, but he took a fancy to a lovebird years ago until it passed away.

He doesn't play with toys or do anything but sleep and eat, so I really don't know what his life was like before, but it sounds like he was very under-stimulated, and he seems to enjoy the "training sessions," a LOT.

I don't give him his love-and-obsession-sunflower-seeds anymore unless he and I are interacting, I want him to explore a new perch, or I'm leaving for the day, or something, 'cuz he'll do just about anything for those sunflower seeds. I give him lots of pellets and veggies (and he eats some) for breakfast, but he saves up for those seeds, so when I get home, he's already expecting me to sit on the floor with sunflower seeds. It's amazing how fast they catch on!

Today we did only step-up's and he got the hang of what I wanted him to do after about 10 tries. But I don't want to stress him; again I didn't even get him out, I just opened the door and got out the sunflower seeds and he came out and flew to the training perch and waited there. So I guess if he feels comfortable enough to do that, I'm good with it. He doesn't last long though. After about 10-15 minutes he's tired, so by the end I was able to get both feet to step up and carefully put him in his cage and give him the rest of his dinner, which he gobbled up. Now he retreated to the boing and is sleeping again.

I don't think he's done anything mentally stimulating in a long time XD.

The best part of this is, my female budgie who isn't a talker but a sound FX mimicker, has already learned his calls after like... 4 days. So now she's just sitting on her cage singing away mixing budgie calls and red-wing calls. XD
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-15-2013, 03:07 AM


 
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Daisy was this the link?
http://greenandhealthy.info/arthritishumans.html

Kate I cannot say this works, but feel it did with Henry my Cockatiel.
It does need adapting.
What I did was mix in hot water and picked up in syringe and gave Henry three drops for a few days. He has shown no signs of arthritic wing joints for over a year now.
What I felt was it was worth trying.

I do hope you do have him with you for a long long time.
Thank you for taking him in.


A tribute to my lost ones. RIP.
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-15-2013, 05:02 AM



 
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No no it was something I have written down but I will post it when I'm back home

For a bird who isn't very tame he sure is confident!


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