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General Health Care Remember to use common sense and consult with an avian veterinarian.

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Old 02-22-2015, 10:13 PM
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Paranoid?

Hey everyone. I know I post very few and far between, but I could use some help and reassurance.

First of all, I would like to start by saying I have generalized anxiety and panic disorder. The reason I feel I should tell you all that is because I fear that I am panicking and stressing over nothing.

My husband and I are leaving tomorrow for Atlanta (from PA) for a week. I have a green cheek conure, Tiki, who we adopted about a month and a half ago. She was given a completely clean bill of health at the vet several days after I brought her home. I absolutely ADORE her and am head over heels for her in the short amount of time that she's been with us. That said, I am really stressing over our trip. We will only be gone for 5 days, and we have arranged for our in-laws to come by once a day to feed, water, and spend time with her.

In all of my worrying and stressing, I think I'm starting to imagine I'm seeing signs of illness. Or maybe I really am and my husband is just trying to calm me down because he thinks I'm imagining it but he doesn't really know anything about birds. I *think* I see a sign of illness, and then it just starts spiraling out of control until I don't know what's normal anymore. I start wondering... are her feathers poofy? Is she breathing heavy? Why is she moving her beak like that?

So here are the things I think I'm noticing.

1. One of her nares looks like there is something in it. I don't know how to describe this other than the one is just a gaping black hole, but the other one I can see flesh in. It's not running, there's no discharge, and she doesn't sneeze. It's just, I can SEE flesh inside. I've googled a lot of pictures and it looks like I can see it in some conures, others not. I looked back to pictures of when I first got her though, and I think I can see it in the pictures. And I took her to the vet when I first got her and she was given a clean bill of health.

2. She appears a little puffed up the last few days, even though her room is warm... borderline hot. She is acting completely normal, eating normally, but when she's just sitting on my hand, or my shoulder, or a perch, she poofs up a little. But looking back at photos of when I first got her, she's a bit goofy in those, too. Do conures normally maintain a little bit of poofy-ness? They shouldn't always be completely slicked-back feathers, right?

3. Should you be able to see their breathing? When she's sitting relaxed, a little poofy, I can see her breathing. Her tail doesn't bob, I just see her belly move. About 44 times per minute... which I read somewhere that for her size weight 40-70 per minute is normal.

4. She had her beak partially open for a few minutes in her cage the other day while she was just sitting. I could see her tongue moving. I mean, it was only open just a crack. And she hasn't done it since. But she's always moving her beak around... clicking and grinding so it's hard to tell.

I took a video of her sitting on a perch, appearing slightly puffed up, where you can see her breathing. I don't know how to upload a video. Does anyone have an iPhone I could send the video to to give me their opinion? I'm going to try to upload a few photos of the nostril and the puffiness.

I want to be rational and say I'm just blowing things out of proportion and being paranoid because of my trip. But what if I go away and she gets really sick?

Any opinions would be greatly appreciated.

And I know the easy solution would be "Take her to the vet when in doubt" but its about 5 degrees outside and I don't want to stress her out/freeze her by taking her to the vet for maybe slight puffiness and some flesh in her nostril that has probably always been there.

Sorry I'm such a worry wart.

Thank you.
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Old 02-22-2015, 10:24 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

Here are pictures (I hope)

This first one is of the nare I'm speaking of. It seems a little blurry, but you can sort of see the 'flesh' I'm talking about. This is the day I brought her home (before we even saw the vet).


This one is also of the nare (pardon the blueberry and the fact that it's sideways I'm not as computer skilled as I used to be)


These are all of her "general poofiness" I'm talking about. Does this look about normal? Again.. sorry about the sideways ones.




Thank you for any words of wisdom!
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Old 02-22-2015, 10:29 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

She looks fine in the pics. Is she sleeping more than normal? Is she eating fine?

FWIW, birds will pant out their mouth when they are hot.
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Old 02-22-2015, 10:46 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

Thank you for your reply! She is eating totally fine... she's a bit of a pig actually. I wondered if she was panting because she was hot... but then why would her feathers have been a little poofy? Unless that is normal for them to always be slightly puffed.
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Old 02-22-2015, 11:00 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

Hi Lauren

Sorry your stressing out - I totally understand how leaving your bird is a stressful thing - it's almost worse than a baby

It sounds on the surface to be pretty normal as birds often puff up when resting and yes, if you watch them closely, you can count their respirations. As long as it is not heaving and no open beak panting, tail bobbing.
Re the nares: Sometimes I would see something like what you mentioned on my cockatiel but it was not associated with illness.

Perhaps you could send the video and pictures to your vet 2morro and see what the vet says about it. Naturally you dont want to take your birdie out when it is cold out if you not sure but thinking you may be over-stressing but if necessary the car can be warmed up 1st and a blanket or large towel over the carrier works well to keep the chill off when going from the car to into the vet's office. Green Cheeks are usually pretty hardy little birds.

Will say a prayer you will do the right thing in this instance!
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Old 02-23-2015, 10:57 AM
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Re: Paranoid?

There is a tiny membrane within the nares..sometimes it's visible, sometimes it's harder to see. Nothing to worry about. You're just freaking out a little bit from worrying about her. We've all been there I'm sure
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Old 02-23-2015, 11:58 AM
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Re: Paranoid?

Parrotnoid? ....hehe

I hope your trip goes well and your baby stays healthy and safe while your gone.
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:36 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

Thank you all. I really think I am just being 'parrotnoid' (hahaha). My in-laws have been visiting her and they've said she's happy as a clam! Heading home tomorrow... can't wait. I miss her so much!
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Old 02-26-2015, 02:43 PM
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Re: Paranoid?

I definitely know how it feels. been there! Over the years, I've begun to relax a bit. Not as experienced as some other parronts on here, but experienced enough to notice my own progression.

When I had my first bird, I was so scared! Birds really are fragile, and I think that "parrotnoia" in the beginning is healthy as it fuels further research and learning about parrots.

Parrotnoia should be a coined term for nervous early bird parronts. It comes up whether its a first bird or a new bird. Totally natural. Anyway:

Things that used to make me freak out, don't anymore. Occasionally, there WILL be mishaps. (Milo decided the other day that he was going to stealthily snatch a bite of Hersheys straight from my mouth, for example...that was a first!)

I remained calm, grabbed him and wiped the ill-gotten Hersheys from his mouth, then kept an eye on him for the next hour to make sure it went through his system alright. It did. There would be no use in stressing out and I feel proud that I was a bit more calm and confident with that. Still working on it, though.
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Last edited by AshMGon; 02-26-2015 at 02:45 PM. Reason: add
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