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Old 12-12-2012, 07:56 PM
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Obese BF Zon!

Hi, I just recently took in a BF Zon (name is Del) as a foster and the poor girl is severely overweight! She came in at almost 1000 grams and got down to 800 grams in her first foster home. Backstory: an elderly woman was give the parrot when it was a year old. For the next 9 years Del was fed an all seed diet of wild bird food and kept in a too-small cage. Now she can hardly balance herself and her feet are a mess. Difficult for her to grip. Any ideas for safe weight loss for this poor thing?
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:18 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Best thing really is just getting her on a healthy diet and getting her active. If she has things to do, the weigh will come off easy, but Zon's are notorious porkers! It might take some time, but the weight will come off.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:35 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Hey snookie, welcome to the forum. Yeah that's a lot of extra weight. I'd have the AV check her for enlarged liver. Could possibly require being anesthetized for an Xray. A risk in unhealthy birds but if there's an issue , now is the time to fix it. Zons change diets well and variety is the best diet. Does she have natural perches? that are big enough? How long did it take to lose 200 grams? How old is she? Is she now in a forever home? Is she cage bound now? Lots of older threads in this section, check them out. Feel free to contact me anytime. give us a little more history ! Oh and pictures/videos, we love pic and stories about birds.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:39 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

I did that when 11 years ago I adopted a then 9-year-old BF Amazon that was really a mess due to poor diet (she was fed pigeon food, pizza, twinkles and french fries), had NEVER had a toy, and was kept in a cage so small she could barely turn around (think parakeet travel cage). Her first stop was to the vet (high cholesterol and elevated liver enzymes, but no diseases). It took two years for her to look normal (feathers the right color, no stress bars, blue on her head, feathers under her wings instead of grey fluff). It also took her two years to learn to eat pellets and veggies (although she immediately would take legumes, sprouted seeds, and most fruits). I let her feathers grow, which helped a lot with her condition. It was close to four years before she could fly with any skill. Before that, I just let her flap on my hand with a thumb over her toes (she doesn't bite when I do this but some parrots might). Her first toys were made from balsa wood. As she built her confidence, we moved up to other more challenging toys. Once she was eating well, I hid her food all over her large cage, in cups she had to tear into, both high and low, in puzzle toys, in boxes. I also put her out in the outdoor aviary on the covered back porch on every nice day. Now, at 20, she doesn't look like the same bird. She is queen here, full of confidence and vitality. Her feathers glow and she flies where ever she wishes. I wish you luck with your new bird. She sounds like a great one to help. Can't wait to follow her progress.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:34 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Thanks everyone...(Snookie...ha!). I'll add some pics because she is a hot mess. Currently I am just fostering her although they rescue would be happy for me to adopt her at no charge. I know she had bloodwork done and she does not have FLD and the bloodwork looked normal. I was told she weighed close to 1000 grams when she came to her first foster. That foster had her on Higgins Safflower Gold for three months when I got her. I weighed her right away and got 797 grams. So she lost a lot of weight in the first few months. I have so idea if that is too much or what.

I've had her for a week and she's getting a big cage tomorrow and I will set it up nicely with rope perches (her feet are in some bad shape with fatty tumors and a missing toe), toys, food bowls, etc. She is unbalanced and has to hook her beak to the side of the cage when she naps so she doesn't fall off!

She seems like a nice bird but when I try to touch her she growls in a whiny voice sort of. She doesn't understand how to step up and I don't want to push that too much right now with her having so much weight.

I guess I'm worried about how to convert her to a good pellet based diet without stressing her out. She is ignoring the Harrison's and Zupreem and I've decreased her Higgins to 2 Tablespoons a day along with fresh veggies/fruit. I think that might be too severe. She will forage around her cage for Nutriberries which is good exercise.

Oowl, she doesn't have that pretty vibrant blue on her head---colors are dull. Thanks for your stories and support.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:44 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

And what do you all think of Lafeber Pellet Berries? Pellet-Berries | Lafeber Cares – Pet Bird Food This might be the ticket since she is totally ignoring the Harrison's and Zupreem.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:56 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

my bf amazon i rehomed wouldnt touch Harrisons or convert to Harrisons and veggies until i used Bird Builder in the water for 2 weeks.
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:18 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Henpecked, she stays in her cage with the door open...doesn't seem to want to come out and flops all over the place and screeches when I try to get her out. But the last foster said she did come out of her cage. She's only been here a week. I use rope perches supported by a wooden perch b/c of her weight. When she was brought in her feet had to be aspirated and green pus came out---her leg band had to be cut off as well. Her feet look a lot better now. Let's see, she's 10 years old and she speaks with a British accent (haven't heard it yet) b/c the elderly lady who had her was from the UK.

Thanks again for helping!
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:19 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Poor thing

Diet is very important, it will most likely be slow going but it will be worth it. My galah was in bad shape when I got her but seeing her learn to play, become healthier, and the bond we have is all amazing to look back on. Rosie was severely underweight when I got her rather then obese. Also teaching this blue front to Fly once it's a little healthier will be a great benefit to getting him in shape again
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:40 PM
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Re: Obese BF Zon!

Aww, the poor dear.
The best of luck to you on this noble and amazing task.
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