Pediatric Diseases of Pet Birds

Pediatric Diseases of Pet Birds

Pediatric diseases are very common and very related to issues with husbandry and nutrition. The health of a bird would depend on factors like the health of the parents, genetics, the incubation process, nutrition (type of food, temperature, and consistency), environment (humidity, warmth, and cleanliness), and susceptibility to infectious diseases.

Some common pediatric diseases your pet parrot can have include:

aspiration pneumonia

bacterial disease

yeast infection

viral disease (polyomavirus, avian bornavirus, circovirus)

foreign body

crop stasis, crop burn, esophageal and pharyngeal trauma

hepatic lipidosis

failure to thrive

beak deformities

constricted toe syndrome/toe malposition


choanal atresia

Chicks (pet parrots) are either parent-raised (small parrots like budgerigars and lovebirds) or hand-raised (big parrots). Both techniques have benefits and flaws. Most aviculturists think that hand-raised parrots make better pets and that incubator hatching and hand-raising curtail the incidence of some infectious diseases. Disadvantages of hand-raising a parrot can include stunting and an increase in husbandry-related diseases like crop stasis or aspiration pneumonia. Many veterinarians believe that hand-raising leads to behavioral issues because chicks will not learn species-specific behavior from parent birds 

Carrying out a physical examination of your parrot can generally be performed with the least restraint, and the pet parrot should be kept warm during this physical examination. Ensure that the crop should be palpated at the outset of the assessment. 

Birds with food in their crop should be taken care of carefully to curtail the danger of regurgitation or aspiration. Mentation and body weight should also be noted. 

Before they fledge, chicks have little musculature over their keel bone; thus, the muscle and subcutaneous fat over their hips, elbows, and toes should be assessed. It should be inferred whether the ears and eyes are open, or when they opened if known.

Your pet's skin, feather quality, and the distribution of its feathers should be examined. Healthy little parrots will always have yellowish-pink skin, and feathers first appear on the head, wing, and tail. Unusual feather growth or delayed or abnormal opening of eyes can be a sign of stunting. Stress bars (lucent areas across the vane of the feathers) illustrate a period of stress when that quantity of the feather was forming. These periods are common during weaning, so a few stress bars are not unusual. A large number of pressure bars may reflect an underlying illness or condition.

Let's discuss three bird illnesses

  • Crop Stasis

This is the inability of the crop to empty in a normal time frame. It is a common condition in hand-fed chicks. It can occur due to poor husbandry and nutritional practices or primary disease. Environmental temperatures that are too cold or inadequate humidity can cause crop stasis, as can feeding formula that is too cold or thick. 

  • Esophageal and pharyngeal trauma

This occurs when an improper hand-feeding technique, either with the syringe tip or a rigid feeding tube is done. This would result in tissue trauma, cellulitis, and the distribution of food into subcutaneous tissues.

Pets that have this may be depressed, anorexic, cold, and dehydrated, with a poor feeding response. Swelling may be noticeable in the neck area. 

  • Mandibular prognathism 

A very common illness, this disease generally takes place in several birds from the same clutch but can mostly be seen in cockatoos. If appropriately observed, the hand feeder would be able to correct Mandibular prognathism in your pet bird.

by pulling the beak upward and out for several minutes, several times a day.

 This Condition may require a prosthetic that pulls the upper beak out and over the lower beak. It can be cumbersome and painful, and the prosthetic often needs to be reapplied. 

Your birds must have Vitamins And Supplements, Health Blocks, healthcare for birds to keep them strong and help prevent illnesses.

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