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Old 10-18-2018, 11:05 AM
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Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

Hi all,

My 8 month old female GCC, Groovy, died suddenly while I was out of town for 2 nights and my mother was caring for her. On Monday, I cleaned all of her cages with and extremely low bleach solution before I left and she had been with me most of the day I had left (didn't leave the house until 6 p.m.). I had shampood the underside of my dog that day and she was on my shoulder while I did it.

I was gone at a two day class for my job when she took a turn for the worse. My mom noticed that she wouldn't open one of her eyes and it was crusty. She had some kind of residue on top of her head as well. She was puffed up all day long and acting weak. My mom never contacted me or a veterinarian. She said she saw her drinking water, but she refused to eat. I give her a small amount of seeds once a day that she normally goes crazy over and pellets the rest of the day. She wouldn't touch the seeds or her fruit. I had noticed the day before that her droppings were kind of watery but didn't know that that was a symptom of illness.

That night (Tuesday), my mom covered the cage for her to go to bed. My brother and father heard a sharp scream and found her laying motionless with her wings spread out on the bottom of the cage. She died in my dad's hands. I came home last night and saw her cage big cage uncovered with no food dishes or her and knew something was wrong before my mom even told me.

I've been extremely emotional since I was told last night. My poor sweet baby was suffering from something I probably caused and I had no idea. I wasn't there to respond the way I should have and missed her scared last moments. I have since learned about so many things that can make a bird suddenly ill and feel so stupid. I was trying so hard to get her to eat right and offer mental stimulation (3 cages and tons of new toys) and she didn't even make it to a year. Part of why I got her was that we had the same birthday and I won't be able to celebrate with her like I wanted. I have a jar of foot toys coming in the mail for her and it's too late to cancel the order. I can't go into the room with her cage and look at it with all her toys and things without breaking down. I tried to cover it last night but my mom put the sheet for it away. I wanted to have this bird for close to 30 years and feel absolutely awful.

I can't get a necropsy done and am beyond frustrated that I didn't see her symptoms first hand. If anyone has any sort of idea what could have happened, please don't hesitate to mention.
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:19 AM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I’m so so sorry for your loss. It is a parront’s worst nightmare, I myself have an 8 month old GCC so this hits close to home. I don’t really know much about what might’ve happened but I just wanted to offer my deepest condolences.
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:21 AM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I'm sorry for your lost. I hate to hear these stories but it is important to share your experience, and thank you for trying to learn all you can. As you abd your family now know if you see any symptoms you should be going to the CAV. How long did you have her? Did she ever visit a vet? It sounds like she was ill but I can't tell you with what. You are right to worry about household toxins as well. I don't use bleach at all, just dilute vinegar to clean with. Was it a medicated shampoo you used in the dog? I am so sorry you lost your GCC. I hope you stick around abd also read all the sticky topics we have here. As you have learned we have to be so diligent with these unique and fragile creatures
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:28 AM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

Quote: Originally Posted by Laurasea View Post
I'm sorry for your lost. I hate to hear these stories but it is important to share your experience, and thank you for trying to learn all you can. As you abd your family now know if you see any symptoms you should be going to the CAV. How long did you have her? Did she ever visit a vet? It sounds like she was ill but I can't tell you with what. You are right to worry about household toxins as well. I don't use bleach at all, just dilute vinegar to clean with. Was it a medicated shampoo you used in the dog? I am so sorry you lost your GCC. I hope you stick around abd also read all the sticky topics we have here. As you have learned we have to be so diligent with these unique and fragile creatures
Thank you for your response,

I had her since April. I was saving up to take her to the vet and planned on doing it soon. It was medicated shampoo that I used on the dog, but I can't imagine it was anything stronger than antibacterial soap.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:16 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I am so sorry for your loss. This also hits close to home for me, I have little birds too, and they are just over a year old so also young. Birds are incredibly fragile, and there are so many toxins that can be deadly. Not only that, but there are so many other illnesses that appear to be sudden and fatal. That is why one has to be hyper vigilant with regards to their behaviour, their droppings, their appetite, etc. They hide illness very easily, and sometimes by the time you notice it is too late.

The only way to know for sure is a necropsy unfortunately. I'm sure some of our knowledgeable members will have some insight, although it is so hard to tell - it could be the bleach, or the shampoo, or something entirely unrelated.

I hope that you don't blame yourself. A lot of the time as pet owners we do this when something goes wrong. I'm sure, although her life was short, it was a happy one with you. I send all my love to you during this difficult time.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:17 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

Livcamille,
I'm not saying that the medicated shampoo or bleach was the cause of your loss, or that the runny stool and eye issue and possibly vomit on her head lead to an answer....just so sad, and I know you hate that you were away. But it is important to stress that birds as descendants of dinosaurs are pretty unique , and weighing in at an average of 70 grams for a GCC you can easily reach a toxic overdose of something that is usually consideed safe. Also birds have air sacs and they are exquisitely sensitive to airborne chemicals. Most of us never use air freshener, candles, scented plug ins, are very careful what eaners are used in the house, besides Teflon cookware, other non stick can be toxic, as well as burning plastic. I'm not sure if the medicated shampoo had anything to do with it, but it easily could have, with residue on your hands .. I'm just mentioning this ad I would advise you not to risk things like that with any future Parrots you might get. Look through the stickies I am sure I remember a house safety one. Most members would advise you not to use dilute bleach either. I think your birdie could have been sick, but also the hazards are something to be very careful with.
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Old 10-18-2018, 12:55 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I'm so very sorry, my Green Cheek is just over 2 years old and I love him to pieces, we are very closely bonded and I can't imagine your pain right now.

As already mentioned, there is no way to know for certain what happened without a Necropsy.

However, it's important that you know some things for future reference; I'm sure it's difficult to even think about getting another parrot right now, but hopefully you do eventually try again. Just in case, you do need to know a few things...

First of all, you cannot ever use anything around a bird such as a "medicated shampoo", as birds are extremely sensitive to any and all fumes/scents/odors/smokes, and a "medicated dog shampoo" usually contains anti-parasitics, anti-fungals, anti-bacterials, as well as different ingredients with scents. So you must always keep your bird far away from anything like this...Same with the Bleach, if you don't rinse the cage furiously until there is no sign of any odor/scent from the Bleach remaining at all, this can be very lethal..No household cleaners at all, only hot water mixed with White Vinegar, or any of the unscented, all-natural cleaners that are plant-enzyme based. That's it. No all-purpose cleaners, bathroom cleaners, kitchen cleaners, carpet cleaners/sprays/powders, etc. No candles, no plug-in scents, no oil burners, no incense, etc.

Also, if your family uses pots and pans that have a black-colored non-stick coating on them (usually the pots and pans with black non-stick coatings are the deadly ones), or that you know are coated with Teflon, they must be immediately thrown away and never used inside the house with a bird, even if the bird is in a different room and behind a closed door. You can only used ceramic non-stick, cast-iron, stainless, or real copper pots and pans; the fumes emitted from Teflon and other non-stick coatings once they heat-up kill birds instantly upon breathing them in, and there is nothing you can do to save them.

***All of that being said, it sounds to me like your bird was actually suffering from some type of infection/illness, based on the conjunctivitis in the eyes and the vomit. All species of birds possess a natural, innate survival instinct to hide any and all outward signs of illness or pain for as long as they possibly can, in order to protect themselves and their flocks from predators; if they appear outwardly sick or injured, this makes them and the rest of their flock members easy targets to predators. This makes it very difficult for us as their owners to identify when they are sick.

The problem is that by the time we as people see outward signs of our birds being sick, such as eye conjunctivitis, vomiting, coughing, wheezing, lethargy, sleeping more than normally, loss of appetite or no appetite, sitting on the bottom of their cage, being fluffed-up, etc., they have typically been sick for weeks, if not for months already, and by the time they show any of these outward signs or symptoms they are really very sick and it's often too late to save them. So it's extremely imperative that you get your bird to either a Certified Avian Vet or an Avian Specialist Vet at the very first sign/symptom of illness or pain, you cannot wait at all.

Please do not blame yourself, it really does sound like your bird was suffering from some type of upper respiratory or sinus infection, and had probably been sick for quite some time, and you would have not had any way of knowing this.
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Old 10-18-2018, 03:29 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I am so sorry your little one died.

Birds always fall ill at the most inconvenient of times (almost if they do this on purpose)- and getting them to the CAV as soon as possible is still no guarantee that everything will be fine.


There is no telling if your bird was already a little bit ill and it just flared, or if something else happened... so do not play the blame-game.
You did great in retracing your steps so you can avoid more pittfalls in the future - and that is all you can do, so ...

go to work (cleaning and mending)

Just clean everything with this F10 stuff everyone keeps talking about, or something else that desinfects any possible pathogenes to kingdom-come, rinse well, dry
and yes DO cry a lot while doing this, I think we all would, given the situation.
Cages, toys anything that can de desinfected -> clean and dry, anything that cannot be treated that way: chuck it
(yes more crying is actually recommended, being brokenhearted is bad enough without letting it build up, you are not a bad person!)

After that decide to either put everything in storage or keep them where they were untill your next bird finds you. (there are so many birds out there looking for a parrotperson, if you are open to one - they will show up! I can guarantee that.)

"sterkte"
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Old 10-18-2018, 03:33 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

I join everybody in offering my deepest sympathy. It doesn't take log for them to steal our hearts, does it????

Yes, PLEASE stick around. If and when you get another, you'll be all the more confident.

If you're looking for a vet referral... here are some links.
Most of us swear by our avian vets in the event of health concerns. I don't know where you are, but here are some links. I only have USA info...
Certified Avian Vets
https://abvp.com/animal-owners/find-an-abvp-specialist/
If none are near you...
Avian Veterinarians
http://www.aav.org/search/custom.asp?id=1803
In my opinion, any of the vets listed here should be better than a regular vet.

Also... That Teflon warning is so accurate! Most of us don't risk having it around.

Hang in there. At least your darling left this life while loved and treasured and safe.

I'm glad you're here.
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Old 10-18-2018, 05:08 PM
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Re: Pineapple GCC Suddenly Died

Welcome to the forum, I’m just so sorry that you’ve joined under these circumstances but it’s good that you are here among people who truly understand how you feel. I also joined up having lost my own baby boy GCC only a few weeks ago. He had been with me for four and a half years and was pretty much the love of my life (sorry hubby!) He too had an illness he may have had for some time and I was unable to be with him at the end because he died at the vet hospital which has left me feeling just that much worse about it.

More than any other type of pet, birds really require every household member to be involved in their well-being. You’ve already read others advising of the dangers lurking in all sorts of unexpected places. Any one or several of these may have contributed without you knowing it. Or not, it’s so hard to know for sure. Since you didn’t have her for long she may even have come to you with an underlying medical problem that she would have kept well hidden from you.

The best you can do now is allow yourself plenty of time and space to grieve the loss of your sweet baby. Try not to blame yourself although I know that’s very difficult! The love that you and Groovy have for each other is still alive and always will be.
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Last edited by LaManuka; 10-18-2018 at 06:01 PM.
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