My Parakeet Doesn't Look Well

My Parakeet Doesn't Look Well

by Lisa
(Beverly, MA USA)

Picture of Parakeet

Picture of Parakeet

Reader Question on Parakeet Ruffled Feather and Heavy Breathing Followed By Suggestion From Our Vet

Dear Dr.,

I am writing about my parakeet. His name is Happy and his feathers look ruffled and he is breathing a bit heavy.

He looks a bit better now than this morning or last night. He is eating, but I have not seen him drink. He may be but I haven't seen him. His stool looks OK - same as always. I've attached photos.

Thank you in advance,

Suggestion From Our Veterinarian on Ruffled Feather and Heavy Breathing

Hi Lisa,

Ruffled feathers and heavy breathing are symptoms of many conditions in parakeets including infections (bacterial, fungal, or viral), nutritional disorders, metabolic diseases (e.g., diabetes), immune disorders, cancer, trauma, and more. I recommend that you get him in to see a veterinarian who specializes in avian medicine as soon as possible. If you don’t already have a “bird doctor,” use the Find a Vet function on the Association of Avian Veterinarians website to locate one nearby.

In the meantime, thoroughly sanitize everything in the bird’s cage and keep it impeccably clean. Provide fresh water every day. Replace his food with a new batch of his favorite type (pellets are generally better than seeds). Make sure the cage is in a draft-free location and warmed to around 83 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit.

Jennifer Coates, DVM

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