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Five Signs of a Sick Bird

June 15 2015

Do you own a pet bird? It may not always be easy to tell if your feathered friend isn’t feeling well. Here, a Cherry Hill, NJ veterinarian tells you about five key indicators of a bird in ill health.

Ruffled Feathers

It’s not uncommon for birds to ruffle their feathers, but if a bird keeps the feathers ruffled for an extended period of time, something might be amiss. Generally, a bird who has kept their feathers ruffled for more than 24 hours should be examined by a veterinarian. Respiratory distress and other serious issues could be to blame, so don’t hesitate to take your bird to the vet’s office.

Cere Problems

A bird’s cere is located just above their beak; it’s the two small holes that serve as the animal’s nostrils. If you see runny discharge, inflammation, discoloration, or anything else around this area that looks abnormal, it warrants a call to the veterinarian’s office. Infections or viruses could be to blame for the cere changes.

Clouded Eyes

A bird’s eyes should be clean and clear when they’re healthy, so cloudy eyes are a sure sign that your bird isn’t in perfect health. Take note of any redness, inflammation, or discharge around the eyes, and take your bird to the vet’s office as soon as possible. Keep an eye on your bird’s behavior as well—if you think he or she is scratching at the eyes more than usual, ask your veterinarian for a professional opinion.

Decreased Appetite

Have you noticed more food than usual remaining in your bird’s bowl after mealtimes? A healthy bird should eat regularly, so a decrease in appetite could mean a variety of problems are present. Infections, disease, intestinal blockages, injury, and much more could be to blame, so you’ll want a veterinarian to examine your bird as soon as possible.

Waste Changes

Your bird’s droppings are another good indicator of their overall health. Take note of any severe change in the color and consistency of your bird’s waste; droppings that appear overly firm or runny could indicate intestinal problems, while yellow, brown, or black stool could be a sign of internal bleeding or other serious issues.

If you see any sign that your bird might not be feeling like his or her normal self, it’s best to get a veterinarian’s opinion. Keep your Cherry Hill, NJ veterinarian’s number on hand at all times!

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