Tag Archives: avian veterinarian

Should I quarantine and provide preventative medicines and cures for communicable diseases to my new birds before introducing them to the rest of my flock?

Yes you should quarantine new birds rather than just introducing them to your flock. Do not however treat with pet store antibiotics or other over the counter medications.

The new birds may or may not have anything that the resident flock may have. Just giving medication when there is no reason to do so creates problems. The new birds should be taken to an avian veterinarian who will take a sample for culturing and antibiotic sensitivity testing. The veterinary will also give a physical examination to the bird including weighing, listening to heart and respiratory system and other parameters. In some cases blood testing may be done. Continue reading

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Does it hurt my female to let her lay eggs?

A hen on a good diet can lay a clutch of eggs without causing metabolic deficiencies. The problem in many situations is that the hen lays more than two clutches per year. That can weigh heavily on her calcium supply and general metabolism.

If the hen is on a pelleted diet she shouldn’t have any problem laying 2 clutches per year. A hen on a seed-only type diet many get into calcium deficiency laying that second clutch. Hens that lay continuously on any diet get into calcium deficiencies, and in that case we step in with a medication (lupron) that shuts down sex hormones and stops the laying cycle so the hen can replenish herself. Continue reading

Why do my birds keep getting sick with the common cold or other minor infections?

First of all, birds do not have what humans call a “cold”. For birds, it can be a Chlamydial organism, a Mycoplasma organism, or bacterial infection (many types of bacteria can cause respiratory disease).

Wild finches get Chlamydia psittaci which clogs up their sinuses and upper respiratory tract, making it difficult if not impossible to eat. There has also been Mycoplasma infections which do much the same thing.

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Do I have to clean the feces inside my bird’s cage? If so, how?

Yes its necessary to keep the cage clean and remove feces/urates (white part of the dropping) preferably on a daily basis. Line the bottom of your cage with newspaper or paper towels. These can be rolled up and disposed of daily. Remove the grill in the bottom of your cage if it is present or just put the cage papers on top of it.

Perches can be washed and dried as needed. I use the back of a table knife to scrape droppings off of perches. You can use a dilute vinegar and water solution (1 tablespoon white vinegar to 1 cup water) for a cleaner to wipe down soiled cage bars. Water dish should be cleaned daily. Anywhere there are droppings you need to removed them preferably daily.

Answered by Cathy Johnson-Delaney, DVM, Dipl. ABVP-Avian Practice, Dipl. ABVP-Exotic Companion Mammals.

I just found an abandoned wild baby bird in our yard and gave it to my pet bird to foster. They seem to be doing great. Is this ok?

If the pet bird is feeding the baby wild bird, then leave it be at this time since you are unlikely to reunite the wild bird with its mother. There are some viruses and bacteria that wild birds may carry that could infect your bird.

At this time, I would let things continue since it seems to be working. However, if the baby wild bird becomes much larger than your (I am assuming finch) then it could become too much for your bird to do. Watch your bird closely for signs of fatigue and weight loss.

Answered by Cathy Johnson-Delaney, DVM, Dipl. ABVP-Avian Practice, Dipl. ABVP-Exotic Companion Mammals.

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