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Old 08-02-2015, 03:43 PM
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Exclamation Preening problems

hello all! so Ive had my turquoise gcc for a while now and hes really cute and playful but a total like brat lol, but i want to know if its natural if he doesnt let me preen him still. he likes to wrestle and play hard, but he is also very cuddly and like to play under the blankets and what not, but he just doesnt let me preen him ://.
i see pin feathers stilling out everywhere and he'll only let me get them very rarely and i know the process of pin feathers and all that they my not be ready and still have blood in them but i can clearly see that the tips already have the feathers coming out, he just gets so sensitive about it. I also see him trying to scratch himself like a dog would and also more like a macaw or a cockatoo would.
its kinda worrying me now because I know it feels very uncomfortable for them. is there any home remedy i can use or product i can get? Is it even natural that they do this?
when i took him to the vet to get his sexing and tests done the vet said that he did have a lot of pin feathers and i told him this but he said it wasnt anything to worry about then but i still do lol.
Anyone know what can help me? do i have to physicaly hold him down and do it? im pretty sure its not healthy and they can get infected or ingrown or something right?
the vet said he was also a little under weight but he said its probably from not eating breakfast i dont know if that could help

Also I go give him baths everyday!and especially right now i give him two because its so hot and dry in california right now

Last edited by kiwination; 08-02-2015 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 08-02-2015, 09:51 PM
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Re: Preening problems

Pumpkin has been molting for 4 months now and wont let me near his pin feather to help him. They are painful, so we have to understand. It is normal for them to not want you to touch them. Dont worry. Just keep offering him baths and i have found that Pumpkin likes to preen himself when i take him into a hot shower with me. The humidity seems to really help. It is very dry here in NM as well.
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Old 08-03-2015, 06:03 AM
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Re: Preening problems

I agree warm showers help. Sissy is also molting and won't let me touch her..but I try..lol
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:09 AM
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Re: Preening problems

My JoJo is the same way. Won't even allow head rubs!
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Old 08-03-2015, 08:29 AM
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Re: Preening problems

When you have one bird and they get pin feathers on their head, they cannot get those while preening... correct? So it is up to us to do it. If they will not let you near it, how do you do it? (I did read about the pin feathers are uncomfortable and can be painful when they are still red at the bottom from blood supply. Once the red goes away, they are ready to preen and shouldnt be painful)
I am only asking for future reference
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Old 08-03-2015, 10:35 AM
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Re: Preening problems

It is up to us to help a single bird, BUT only if they allow it. Never hold your bird down and mess with the pin feathers! This is painful and unnecessary. They will eventually go away on their own. Pumpkin is lucky that he has foot dexterity and can reach up and gently massage the pin on his head. For a bird like cockatiels or budgies who don't use their feet this way I'm sure they will utilize a perch or the cage bars or something to alleviate their discomfort if necessary. We need to help with providing showers and humidity but we can't force them to let us touch them. I just want to make this clear because they are obviously painful.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:45 PM
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Re: Preening problems

Yes I usually just take them on their terms. Sometimes Gilbert is totally up for the head scratching, and half closes his eyes and leans his head over, but then other times he gives me a snippy look, as if to say "get your hands off me now!" so I usually say I'm sorry and back off.
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Old 08-03-2015, 12:49 PM
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Re: Preening problems

Quote: Originally Posted by ruffledfeathers View Post
Yes I usually just take them on their terms. Sometimes Gilbert is totally up for the head scratching, and half closes his eyes and leans his head over, but then other times he gives me a snippy look, as if to say "get your hands off me now!" so I usually say I'm sorry and back off.
This is Kyo's reaction too. On her terms only may I help with pin feathers.
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Old 08-09-2015, 08:18 PM
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Re: Preening problems

In my experience, they will seek you out when they want to be preened. They will also let you know when they don't.

Skittles sometimes has moods where he doesn't want me to touch him at all. But, for the most part, Skittles LOVES head scratches and my hands usually gets super tired before he will let me stop. I usually have to switch hands and he will get nippy if I stop before he says so.

Whenever I put my hand near him (above his head) he will lower his head and raise his wing, meaning 'wingpit scratch, please!'.

Sometimes he'll be like, "hey, stop what you're doing. I have an itch and you're gonna scratch it or else." But sometimes his behavior is like, "I'm not in the mood, I have a headache. Get away" sort of response.
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Old 08-10-2015, 01:36 PM
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Re: Preening problems

Bingo on the armpit scratch!!.. Booger will hang upside down off the brim of my hat and spread his wings so I get his armpits... he closes his eyes and goes limp!. Another thing that makes him go under is gentle quick tugs of his tail. Again...eyes close and he goes limp. As far as preening is concerned..birds that dont want you to (at first) will accept it ..even insist on it with time. Meanwhile to help them loosen up on their own mist them with tap water from a clean spray bottle..I assume thats how you bathe him?? I use to have to handle all preening duties on my amazon until I got Booger... Now they take care of each other. and of course do a better job than I ever could. It takes a delicate touch even with the larger birds. I would not advise holding them down and preening them either. I learned from my Bluefront the right way to do it.(trust me he let me know if I did it wrong)... even going as far as to let my thumbnail and little fingernail grow a bit long to simulate a beak. All nail strokes had to be with the grain of the feather..gentle pinch. Once I learned the right way it was a daily thing he would initiate.

Last edited by Notdumasilook; 08-10-2015 at 01:48 PM.
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