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Old 01-12-2017, 01:54 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Veterinarians /Medical Care of Amazons:
Yearly Blood Tests

This Segment is base around the need for a Yearly Blood Tests, which involves the continuous development of a strong, well-structured Medial File for your Amazon. This provides your Amazon’s Avian Veterinarian with knowledge of your Parrot, a foundation. It also provides you a medical document that you will be adding to over time. Enjoy!



Continued from the above Post.

Yearly Blood Tests

By: Steven (SailBoat), January 2017

Maybe, it is my past experiences with rescue and re-homed Amazons that has me a firm believer in extensive yearly examinations, which include an extensive, detailed blood work. Or maybe, it was those extra six years that our past, but still beloved Cleo was part of our life. Time purchased solely by spotting a small trend in her chemical tests. Our past members have come with no history, questionable past diets, lifestyles, and even more questionable health. All of which, have come to form my opinion. Regardless of what has reinforced my belief. The value of a detailed Medical File cannot be measured when you are rushing to your Avian Vet's office with a very sick Amazon at 4:00 am.

As an enhancement of the yearly Blood Testing is the five (5) quarter, based blood testing. Using this format allows the Professional and Owner to see the natural variations in the blood chemistry of your Amazons. By using a five (5) quarter testing over the next five years, the test cycle will takes into account each quarter of a year. Oven ten years, two tests are now available for each quarter. Each additional five-year test cycle allows for that much addition information per quarter over time.

There is no question that Faults Positives have occurred far too often in Avian Veterinarian Medicine. Our Doctors and Avian Vets are not Gods and the Science is still a bit short of solid, to say the least — the more we learn, the more we find, we do not know. We have come a very long way with our Health Sciences, but there are still major gaps in the knowledge base. The more they uncover, the more they find yet to be known and discovered.

For me, it’s not the Yearly Examination; it’s the Accumulation of History that I convent. That History is what allows our Avian Vet to target a Developing Health Problem, monitor an ongoing issue or quickly eliminate issues, when ‘NOT IF,’ but ‘WHEN,’ I will be rushing to our Avian Vet with a very sick Amazon.

I have assembled and provided to the Amazon Forum a framework to develop a history for one's Parrot. Some of you may use it with great success, others may viewed it with a broad cross-section of positions from consider use to 'it’s just too much work'. At the end of the day, each of us must place a value on the depth of the Historical Documentation we develop for our Parrots. The luckily may find it a waste of time, the unluckily may find it saving their Parrot’s life. It’s a choice each of us must make, May We Chose Wisely.


Anytime, your Avian Veterinarian provides Medication, have them show you with ‘Detail’ how to provide that Medication! Never assume you will figure it out when you get home!!! Always have them show you how!!!


Amazon's Have More Fun!


FYI: This large group of Posts, start on page 11 with: Signs of Illness in Parrots!

Last edited by SailBoat; 01-12-2017 at 02:22 PM. Reason: FYI
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Old 01-12-2017, 01:56 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Veterinarians /Medical Care of Amazons:
Quarterly Veterinarian Visits


This Segment provides support for the Quarterly Veterinarian Visits, which involves the continuous development of a strong, well-structured Medial File for your Amazon. This provides your Amazonís Avian Veterinarian with knowledge of your Parrot, a foundation. It also provides you a Medical Document that you will be adding to with time. Enjoy!
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Old 01-12-2017, 01:57 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Continued from the above Post.


Quarterly Veterinarian Visits

By: Steven (SailBoat), January 2017

Our Double Yellow-Headed Amazon visited his Avian Veterinarian quarterly for nail care and a routine examination. Historically, every year was the standard, in which our Amazon’s would get a detailed examination including a standard blood profile, plus an extended visit with either of the two Veterinarians. About eight years ago, we changed to once every fifth quarters, this results in the blood profile occurring, over time, during each quarter of a yearly cycle, thus gathering possible variations that may occur naturally.

I have always made it a point that both primary care Veterinarians work with our DYHA during any given year. My goal is two fold; first our Amazon gets two different sets of eyes examining him and second, both Doctors know our Amazon. This assures that when our Amazon has a medical crisis that requires immediate attention both Doctors know our Amazon.

Whether it is a quarterly visit or the fifth quarter physical examination, I always compile my list of observations and questions that arose since my last visit. This way, we quickly cover the basics of our Amazon's past medical issues (review of his Medical File) and what is currently happening. As part of a quarterly examination, different from the standard physical examination, I want a more detailed examination of his feet, beak and heart and air-sacks.

His Feet:
As part of this Thread, I have voiced my concern regarding the effects of Amazons’ perching for extended periods of time on the square frames of cages and play-stands. When I wrote the article of “Getting to the Foot of the Problem,” I was observing my Amazon perching on different surfaces. When he perched on the square frames, I saw a clearly different loading pattern on his feet. That was followed by the formation of pink areas on the two pads just forward of the center pad. This is very different than the more common loading problems seen on the rear pads normal as part of extended dowel preaching. If this continues, I may add branch style perches over the top of those square frames that he commonly perches on. By connecting observations with a regular Avian Medical Care, I can make changes quickly and early. My Amazon's feet have come a long way in the past three years and I am not willing to backslide.

At a recent bird fair I was very happy to see that the new cage designs have incorporated wider square frames in those areas that parrots natural perch when out on the cage.

His Beak:
From the very first time I saw our DYH Amazon, now three years ago, I was concerned about the size of this beak. I knew that he had moved to a good basic diet about four months prior to his coming to us and that for the first time in his then fifteen years of life, toys had been added to his World. Once he came into our care, our DYHA received two detailed physical examinations in his first 90 days. With a medical benchmark established, we were in a position to better monitor his chemicals. During each quarterly examination, his beak is examined for fungous and bacteria infestation - none found! With a total of eleven (11) blood profiles showing his chemicals with in normal parameters (in each season of a year), the observations continue. The goal for 2017 is to continue the elimination of plastic parts from his toys and second, shifting his wood toys to thinner and softer wood pieces.

With rescued and re-homed parrots, I am a firm believer in making slow gradual changes to their environments, unless a clear safety or medical issue demands an immediate change, I choose the gradual method to assure that unneeded stress is not added to the equation.

Blood Testing:
Maybe, it is my past experiences with rescue and re-homed Amazons that has me a firm believer in extensive yearly (or fifth quarter) examinations, which does include detailed blood work. Or maybe, it was those extra six years that our past, but still beloved Cleo was part of our life. Time purchased solely by spotting a small trend in her chemical tests. Our past members have come with no history, questionable past diets and questionable health, and all have come to form my opinion. Regardless of what has reinforced my belief, the value of a detailed Medical File cannot be measured when you are rushing to your Avian Vet's office with a very sick Parrot.

For me, it’s not simply the yearly (or fifth quarter) physical examination; it’s the ongoing accumulation of History that I convent. That History is what allows our Avian Vet to target a developing health problem, monitor an ongoing issue or quickly eliminate issues, when “NOT IF”, but when I will be rushing to our Avian Vet with a very sick Amazon.

Having built a strong relationship with our Avian Veterinarians leads to insights that the Show-Up-Only-If-Sick Group could never have time for.It’s amazing what you can learn from your Avian Veterinarian when they are not fully absorbed in saving your Parrot's life!

Advantage of the Quarterly Vet Visit is the ability to quickly see changes in our Amazon that would not have been seen until the yearly (or fifth Quarter) examination. This visit can reinforce the need for a full blood screen and/or gram stain testing at that time and change to a third or every Quarter testing based on those finding. Understanding that our Amazons are more likely to be or become ill due to their pass.

Anytime, your Avian Veterinarian provides Medication, have them show you with ‘Detail’ how to provide that Medication! Never assume you will figure it out when you get home!!! Always have them show you how!!!


Amazons’ Have More Fun!


FYI: This large group of Posts, start on page 11 with: Signs of Illness in Parrots!

Last edited by SailBoat; 01-13-2017 at 08:19 AM. Reason: FYI
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  #124 (permalink)  
Old 01-12-2017, 01:58 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Veterinarians /Medical Care of Amazons:
Preparation for a Sick-bird Veterinarian Visit


This Segmentís goal is to Preparation for a Sick-bird Veterinarian Visit, which involves all the raw emotions and fears of being a Parent can have. And, as rushing to your Avian Professional, knowing that your Parrot has a detailed Medical File is going to be of great help! After all, the continuous development of a strong, well-structured Medial File for your Amazon will provide a solid foundation to base this much feared, visit upon. Since you know that it will provide your Amazonís Avian Veterinarian with knowledge of your Parrot, a foundation. Ponder!
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  #125 (permalink)  
Old 01-12-2017, 01:59 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Continued from the above Post.


Preparation for a Sick-bird Veterinarian Visit

By: Steven (SailBoat), January 2017


If your Parrot presents with any change, out of its normal healthy state, get to your Avian Veterinarian immediately!

If you have been blessed with not having to endure the panic of rushing a sick-bird to your Avian Veterinarian, preparation for such an event may seem overly dramatic. Having lived with several Amazon’s with a weaken Immune System, I can assure you, it is not! Time is either your friend or it’s your enemy. Preparation buys time!

In one of my past article regarding Avian Disease, I established that Avian Diseases are a constant threat to our Amazons and the importance of a healthy Parrot to fend-off those threats. In another article “Developing a Well-bird Historical Document,” I presented a framework for developing a Historical Document for your Parrot. In both Articles, a strong emphasis was placed on the importance of yearly Avian Veterinarian visits and the need for a detailed Medical File. The goal of those Articles was to support the development of a detailed Medical File for your Amazon, all to allow maximum focus on diagnosing and treatment of your Sick-Bird.

Like your Doctor, the Avian Veterinarian has seen hundreds possibly thousands of clients, since your last visit. With only a yearly visit, the Avian Veterinarian will be reliant on your Parrot’s Medical File. Your active participation in the development of, and knowledge of, your Parrot’s Medical File will greatly aid in the diagnosing and treatment of your Sick-Bird. Since, your Parrot cannot verbally communicate with its Avian Veterinarian, the more aware and observant you are, the more helpful the information you will provide. Your Avian Veterinarian will look for changes from your Parrot’s Medical File and the Historical Document (which you had previously (hopefully) provided), especially with a Sick-Bird. As part of each visit, your Avian Veterinarian will update your Parrot’s Medical File and specifically upon ‘you’ noticing a change in its health.


As part of a Sick-Bird examination, your Avian Veterinarian will question you regarding the following.

Specific Medical Review:

Reviewing with you, those items that are commonly covered as part of each Well-Bird /Sick-Bird examination, examples being a specific medical problem, prior illness, injury, or surgery.

Presenting Medical or Emotional Problem:

How long has the problem been apparent? General details regarding the problem, examples: Any changes in appetite or activity levels? Has there been any specific change in behavior? The Avian Veterinarian may also ask you what you think the cause of the problem is and why.

Presenting Medical Symptom(s):

Specific details regarding the medical problem, examples: Have you noticed your Parrot sneezing, voice change, panting or labored breathing, breathing clicks, tail pumping, regurgitation, diarrhea, feather picking, lumps or bumps on the skin, appetite loss, change in water /food intake, bleeding? Etc…

Presenting Emotional Symptom(s):

Specific details regarding an emotional problem, examples: Have you noticed your Parrot plucking feathers, excessive preening, change in the nature of the Parrot, become withdrawn, change in vocalizations, or any other behavioral change(s)? Etc….

Environment Changes:

General details regarding possible contributing factors, examples: Has there been a recent change in the Parrot’s life? Has there been any loss or addition of family members, either human or animal? Has there been a recent move of home or cage location? Has there been any remodeling or workers in the home? A recent vacation or change in daily pattern? Parrots are creatures of habit and any change can be stressful. This can lead to disease as well as behavioral problems.

Home Treatment (if any):
What has been used and for how long? What was the response? If any medications have been used, bring them along, and show them to the Avian Veterinarian.


Having already developed a detailed Medical File and a written Historical Document will save time and provide a Comparative Benchmark for the examination of your Sick-Bird. Once again, time is either your friend or it’s your enemy. Preparation buys time!


I strongly believe in the Five Quarter detailed medical examination with standard quarterly visits targeting nail trimming and health monitoring. The use of a Five Quarter detailed medical examination causes this specific examination to move throughout the year. This allows Chemical (blood) Testing to see the affect of Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. Talk to your Avian Vet regarding this approach, you may just get a high-five.


It is important to have a ‘Well-Read’ Avian Medical Resource and an Emergency Medical Kit in your home. In the past, the Bird Club that I belong too had offered and long ago created an excellent laminated Medical ‘Flash-Card’ set and an Emergency Medical Kit; both covering and supported the most common emergency medical issues. The Club’s Library has “Parrots in Health and Illness,” an older, but still very relevant resource. My household has and uses the “Compete Pet Bird Owner’s Handbook” (New Edition), which is an excellent resource.


Having built a strong relationship with our Avian Certified Veterinarian(s) leads to insights that the Show-Up-Only-If-Sick Group could never have time for.It’s amazing what you can learn from your Avian Veterinarian when they are not fully absorbed in saving your Parrot's life!

Anytime, your Avian Veterinarian provides Medication, have them show you with ‘Detail’ how to provide that Medication! Never assume you will figure it out when you get home!!! Always have them show you how!!!

Sources:
The Complete Pet Bird Owner’s Handbook (New Edition), Gary A. Gallerstein D.V.M www.exoticpetvet.net and www.avianweb.com


Amazon’s Have More Fun!


FYI: This large group of Posts, start on page 11 with: Signs of Illness in Parrots!

Last edited by SailBoat; 01-12-2017 at 02:21 PM. Reason: FYI:
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  #126 (permalink)  
Old 02-10-2017, 09:58 AM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

What are/are the any rule about moving/rolling cage around as needed?

Outside, quite room/bedroom when necessary.

She seems to to enjoy it, is this an unhealthy practice?





Quote: Originally Posted by SailBoat View Post
Continued from above Post!


Cage Set-Up 101
By: Steven (SailBoat), December 2016

One of the first things that should be evaluated with a Parrot displaying behavioral problems is their cage. Where it is located, its size, its shape, and how it is set up. Many behavior problems can be attributed to improper surrounding. The Amazonís cage should be a safe haven for him with plenty of things to draw his interests and keep him busy.

Type of Cage
A good cage should be easy to keep clean, easy to access (which includes a door large enough for human access,) and it should not be round. The bar spacing should be appropriate for the Parrotís head not to pass though. Whether or not you have a flat top, play top or a dome top is up to you. However, flat tops provide more options in the long run. One of the best gifts you can give yourself and your parrot is a top of the line, properly sized, large cage. When you skimp on a cage you just end up replacing it again and again. Do your research and get a cage that will last the lifetime of your parrot. Most cages come with a package of standard dishes and perches. Just because it came with the cage does not mean they should not be upgrade and added to, fitting the needs of your Parrot.

Cage Placement
The cage should be placed in an area where you are sure your Parrot will be able to view his surroundings safely without feeling threatened. You do not want to place a Parrot directly in front of a window or in the center of a room. Our first response is to assume that they would enjoy the outdoor view or being right in the middle of a room so they can see everything. The truth is that this type of placement may be fine while your Parrot is young. But once your Parrot becomes sexually mature and aware that it is a prey animal, this type of placement can cause extreme stress. Knowing this, a Parrot should be placed against a solid wall, if this is not possible then the back half of the cage should be covered at all times. This will give him the sense of security that is needed.

Parrots do not live out in the open in the wild. They build nests inside of trees or in dense forest areas. So they may live and raise their young safely. Therefore we should work to mimic this type of environment by placing their cage in a more indiscreet area of our home. One where they can take pleasure in their surroundings and not feel threatened. In addition, consider your Parrots sleep requirements. Does the placement of the cage allow for the proper amounts of undisturbed quiet darkness? If not, do you have a sleeping cage in another room? Sleep deprivation is a common problem for many Parrots. So if your Parrot is not receiving at least ten (10) to twelve (12) hours of rest, each night, you will need to re-evaluate his cage placement.

Quick guide to cage placement

Do not place directly in front of a window
Do not place in center of a room
Do not place right on the edge of a doorway
Do not place next to the TV that is watched late into the night
Do not place in the kitchen because of toxic fumes and its activity level
Do not place in an unfinished basement
Do not place in a utility room
Do not place in the garage
Do not place in your bedroom

Do place in a corner of the family room with a sleeping cage in another room
Do place in a frequently used home office or sitting room
Do have a bird room if you have multiple birds
Do place in an alcove or visible dining room
Do place against a wall
Do place so they have a view of the entire room without making them a focal point.

Your Parrot wants to observe his environment, which allows him to learn and trust his surroundings.

Perches
There should be at least three (3) different diameter perches in the cage, sized for the comfort of your Parrot, commonly larger than those supplied with cage. The perches should also differ in textures with at least one of the perches being a rope or Booda perch. The rope perch should be the one that is placed at the highest point for sleeping. Place this perch in a U shape in an upper back corner of the cage. This is especially important if you have a feather picker. It gives a sense of safety to the Parrot, plus if they turn to pick, the rope is right there and they will commonly opt to shred it. Do not use stone or concrete perches unless they are at the lowest level of the cage and there are at least two or three wood /rope perches available at higher levels in the cage. Wider natural tree branches are always healthier for your Parrotís claw pads then machined dowels.

After placing the rope sleeping perch, the other perches should be wood, or a minimum of two woods and one of a different texture of choice (see above). There does not have to be perches in front of every food dish. Humans tend to make life just a little too easy for these busy birds. Unless your Parrot has a physical disability or is limited due to age make them work a little.

Cage Set Up
A minimum of three different perches with the primary wood perch running horizontally across the middle of the cage in addition to the rope sleeping perch that should be in a U shape in an upper back corner. The third should be place just inside of the door so that when the door is opened the perch is brought out of the cage. By doing this you do not have to reach into the cage for ĎStep Upí commands that may be refused. When you want your Parrot to come out you have him come down to this perch first, open the door once he is on it and request the ĎStep Upí. This is a must if your bird has aggression issues. Please remember that undersized perch diameter and dowel perches will damage the pads on your Parrotís claws (feet).

Now it is time to add lots toys. You should have at least three (3) working toys in the cage at all times. Working toys are toys that make them work for their treats or favored foods. The other toys should be things that are easily shredded such as soft wood, paper, and leather, preferably all of the above. Good toys have many different shapes and textures for the bird to explore and destroy. Your Parrot should have a minimum of ten (10) toys in his cage at all time. You should not be able to see the parrot easily when he is in his cage. This is his home and he should feel camouflaged as he would if he was in the wild.

Place one of the working toys in front of the U shape perch, with the other working toy towards the front of the opposite corner. Place one of the other toys directly on the side of the U perch so that perch is surrounded by hanging toys. This allows your Parrot a hiding place to feel secure. Now take paper towels, shredders, newspaper, leather, or brown paper bags and fold them up and weave them into the cage bars making a little square section on the side and to the back of the U perch. In addition, add a flat toy that can lay against the outside of the cage as a shield behind the sleeping perch. Again this gives a sense of security to the Parrot. Plus if you have a feather picker it gives them another option to chew instead of their feathers.

Please remember that Parrots have been taken from the wild and it is up to us to learn to understand and provide for their needs. Set their cage up in a way that is fun for them and keeps life interesting.
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  #127 (permalink)  
Old 02-10-2017, 10:59 AM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Great question!!!

There are two sides to this question and they have more to do with how your Parrot deals with these trips to different locations in your home. Some Parrots love it and others hate it. So, if your Parrot is happy with traveling around, Travel On!

Take care, the wheels on most cages are a known weak link! So, assure that you lift the wheels over near anything on the floor.

Keep in mind that most Parrots will want a place that they can hide behind while in their Cage. Use the placement of hanging toys that allow your Parrot to hide within /behind will giving them comfort while sleeping during the day.

Last edited by SailBoat; 02-10-2017 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 02-10-2017, 11:07 AM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Stephen, I hope I didn't miss this in your writings already, but...
Dr. Lindstrom recommended weighing the Rb once a week or MORE, as opposed to the monthly schedule... what do you think about that?
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Old 02-10-2017, 11:32 AM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

The Weight of a Parrot is one of the few tools that Owners have to monitor the health of their Parrots!

Understanding that most Parrots are only weighted when they show-up at their Vet's office sick. Any time weight is taken more often provides ever greater insight. Most well meaning owners that are taking their Parrots in on a yearly bases are miles ahead of the 'Show Up When Sick' group!

When the Parrot's Owner takes a monthly weight reading, they have twelve times the data than the yearly visit that takes into account the effects of the Seasons of the year. When that weight is than taken Weekly. The observation becomes more like a spot light to pick-up smaller variation. Now, when one enters the daily taking of your Parrots Weight, we now have a pen light view of very small variations in the Well Being of our Parrots.

Remember that Parrots are great a hiding illness and monitoring their weight provides a daily view of their well-being!

NOTE: The process of obtaining your Parrots Weights can also 'Drive You Nuts!' You Must obtain your Parrot's Weight during the same general time everyday. Any variation in 'general' time will shift the weight of your Parrot.
Goal: Parrot Weight is only taking in the Morning! And, only after your Parrot has taken its Morning Movement! And, before your Parrot has its first meal! I.E.: Your Parrot is Empty!

Monitor your Parrots Weight by writing it down: Date, Time & Weight! This will allow you to see trends and effects of the Seasons, Diet, Hormonal Season, etc...

Once per Month: Very healthy younger Parrot
Once per Week: Older Parrots
Once Daily: Older Parrots and any Parrot what has or had any medical problems

Last edited by SailBoat; 02-10-2017 at 12:49 PM.
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Old 02-10-2017, 12:38 PM
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Re: I Love Amazons - An On-Going Journey!

Oh, wow... didn't even think about weighing at same time, preferably morning when he is at his emptiest.
Okay, Mr. Boat. I have put a calendar in the Rb's room. We'll shoot for... um... Mondays and Fridays. First I will have to desensitize him to the new perch-weigher-thingie. Unlike Dr. Lindstrom, I'm not adept at placing a bird on a scale against his will. Thanks.
Onwards!
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