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When Budgies Get Sick - Part 1
No matter how much we love them, or how well we take care of them, sometimes the inevitable happens: our budgie gets sick. This can be very disconcerting. What can you do for your little friend, and how serious is it? Do you need a vet? Is there anything you can do to help speed up the healing process? Or maybe you want some helpful tips on preventing illness in birds. No worries, you're on the right page.
- Difficult to spot
- Quick checklist
- Do you need a vet?
- What you can do
- Preventing illness
1. Difficult to spot
Generally speaking, when a budgie gets sick, you won't notice it. Most likely you will know of the term "survival of the fittest". This is a rule that states that in the wild only the strongest manage to survive. When a disease or disability strikes, nature's cruel side rears its head and you most likely fall prey to predators, or are unable to support your basic needs, thus starving to death. Considering the consequences of falling ill, it's easy to understand why most budgies avoid going near a bird with a sickness that could potentially be contagious, lethal or no.
Budgies live in flocks. They are supported by large numbers and this gives them protection from predators, access to mates for reproduction, and so on. When they get ill, they will do anything not to show they're sick. After all, if they're sick, they might get left behind by the others, or worse.
Only when a budgie is truly very ill, where it becomes impossible to hide it, will it exhibit any symptoms. Of course, living as a pet hasn't changed this innate instinct. Pet bird or no, any budgie will hide it when it's not feeling 100%.
2. Quick checklist
So how can you tell if your precious pet is feeling lousy? Luckily, there are some signs that could indicate illness. Follow through the checklist below and you will have a general idea of their health. However, there is one magic rule: better safe than sorry! If you're in doubt, go see a vet.
Quick Health Checklist:
- Is your budgie puffed up?
- Does your budgie seem generally lively, playful, curious?
- Does it eat & drink as usual? Not a lot more, not a lot less?
- Are the feathers healthy-looking and not plucked out?
- Look at the vent: are there any droppings sticking to it (indicating diarrhea)?
- Does the beak look shiny?
- Is the beak too long or short?
- Is the cere flaked or crusty? If your budgie is not a breeding female, this could be an indication of an infection, fungus, ...
- Are the paws & legs healthy and not flaked?
- Are the nails too long? This could indicate lack of activity.
- How is its balance? Healthy budgies shouldn't fall off perches.
In The Next Chapter...
Of course, just having a checklist, while useful when you're in a panic, isn't enough to keep your budgie healthy. Sometimes, you need to see a vet. The following chapter will deal with how to decide if you need a vet. You'll also learn some basic First Aid for birds and what you can do to make your budgie feel more comfortable, but most importantly, how to prevent your birds from getting sick.
So read on... in Part 2.
- Birds Online
- Signs of illness - Talk Budgies Forums
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- Budgerigars.co.uk — Everything you ever wanted to know about our feathered friends!
Found this on letstalkbirds.com and thought it might be useful here. In the wild if budgies let their guard down and show they are unwell they will become the victims of predators. Therefore it is natural for budgies to conceal their illness as long
- Budgie Care.Com
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Pet Information - Pet Place is the number one source for pet care information and pet health information with over 5,000 veterinarian approved articles.