Signs of Illness in Birds

Did you know that the USDA’s Bird Health Awareness Week starts November 6th? Our feathered friends make absolutely adorable little pets. Polly is very delicate, however, and can sometimes get sick very quickly. It’s very important for you to be able to recognize potential signs of illness in your cute little buddy, and to contact your vet immediately if you notice anything wrong. Here, a Tipp City, OH vet lists some signs of illness in birds.

Lack of Appetite

Reduced appetite is almost always a red flag in our animal companions. Birds don’t eat very much, so it can be hard to tell if your pet’s appetite is normal. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Changes in Waste

When you clean Polly’s cage, keep an eye out for unusual colors, odors, or textures in her waste. If your pet’s waste has a black, orange, or bloody color, contact your vet immediately: you may have a very sick bird on your hands!

Unkempt Feathers

Polly’s feathers should be soft and clean. If your winged buddy’s feathers look matted, dirty, or unkempt, or if she is plucking her feathers, contact your vet immediately.

Red Cere

A red, swollen, or inflamed cere can also be symptomatic of illness in birds.

Respiratory Issues

Birds should breathe quietly and smoothly. If Polly is gasping or wheezing, she may be sick.

Unusual Vocalizations

When we say unusual vocalizations, we mean those that aren’t normal for your pet. If Polly loves to belt out ear-splitting renditions of her favorite song, then you may have one happy, healthy bird on your hands. However, if your feathered pal is usually quite talkative, but suddenly falls silent, she could be ill.

Runny Eyes

Red and/or runny eyes can also be indicative of illness in our feathered buddies. Polly’s eyes should be clear and bright.

Strange Behavior

Our winged friends don’t always act quite like themselves when they aren’t feeling well. If Polly is sick, she may bob her head or tail, run back and forth on the bottom of her cage, or sit in a stiff, unusual position. Spend lots of time with your colorful little pet. The better you get to know your bird, the easier it will be for you to spot abnormal behavior!

Do you have questions about bird care? Contact us, your Tipp City, OH animal clinic! We’re happy to help.

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