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

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Old 04-24-2017, 02:50 PM
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Unhappy Good and Bad News from the Vet

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Well, I took Noah, Alice, and Ria to the vet today. I wanted Noah to have his beak and nails filed since they're razor sharp (he was a good boy and only put his beak on me a little during the filing), Alice needed to have her tummy checked because she's been having issues again, and Ria needed to have her eye checked because it's become more swollen as a result of sinusitis. Anyways, Dr. Morris said Ria looks a lot better, is chubbier than last time, and to keep giving her medicine (he said to try mixing her medicine with syrup since she's getting tired of the ice cream).

However, Alice is a different story. It turns out she has something wrong with her heart. He said her heartbeat was in hummingbird range, and that he'd never heard a budgie with such a fast heartbeat. He also said she's really skinny (I noticed that when I had to catch her). He examined her lower abdomen by her vent for several minutes, and said she definitely has a mass there, and that it felt like a shell-less egg. He wanted to x-ray her, but was worried about how stressed she was. Luckily(?) Alice goes into a sort of catatonic or dissociative state when stressed, so he was able to x-ray her. He thought she was really sick because she was just laying limp on her little back after he handled her, but I told him that it was normal for her to do that, so he went ahead with the x-ray.

The x-ray didn't really show anything because she didn't have enough fat to separate the organs or whatever. He took some fluid from the mass using a syringe, and a bunch of blood came out as if he'd hit an artery. He said not only did she have the avian equivalent of hypertonic cardiomyopathy, but she appeared to have sarcoma in her abdomen. He said she's dying, and that I could either have her euthanized right then, or I could bring her home and monitor her.

He said her heart problem is likely a result of being malnourished when she lived with the animal hoarder when she was just little, and that nothing can be done. The only thing that could've helped is if she'd been fed properly when she was a baby. He said that she seemed anemic due to the tumour, which would only make her heart rate worse.

I decided to bring her home and give her everything she enjoys. I'm also going to feed her a bunch of spinach to help with her iron and help her hang on a bit longer. If she becomes pale, he said to bring her in to be euthanized. He also told me not to be surprised if she suddenly dies. He said he'd perform an autopsy for me when she passes. She probably won't make it to her third birthday in October.

In all, the appointment only cost $50.
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Old 04-24-2017, 03:05 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Ohhhhh, so sorry....thoughts and hearts with you.
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Old 04-24-2017, 03:46 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Oh sweet Alice. Please give her skritches or whatever she likes best from Bumble and me. May her last days be her best days.


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Old 04-24-2017, 03:55 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

You're another one of my dear heroes here.
Yep, love that little darling and please take comfort from the fact that she will pass away LOVED and TREASURED, which is, I think, the greatest blessing our companion animals can have.
Thank you for sharing.
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:03 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Oh, I'm saddened to read this. You are a good soul to give Alice the best life she can have in the time she has left. Did the vet offer any pain medication?
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:03 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Warm feather hugs and prays for both of you!
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Old 04-24-2017, 05:00 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Thanks everyone. Everyone was happy to be back home, and Alice perked right up when I brought her back in the aviary. She's been sleeping a lot and it seems like she is experiencing some pain, but she's at least a bit happy still. By the time the vet went to extract some fluid from the mass, she started coming out of her stupor and was rolling around and nipping my dad and him . That's what I like to see from my birds .

As for pain meds, he didn't prescribe any. With her in as delicate of a state as she is, I wouldn't want to stress her little heart. Also, Metacam seems to be the standard painkiller for birds, and that would really mess up her heart. Thanks for asking, though. I don't want to sound like I'm dismissing you or anything. Here's my Instagram account I just set up with pictures and videos of my birds:

https://www.instagram.com/teddscau/

She isn't exactly trusting of humans so she probably wouldn't like it if I tried to give her a hug or anything , but I will definitely give her as much millet, mash, birdie bread, veggies, and things to shred as she wants. I'm going to keep her alive for as long as I can, but once she's too weak or is just in too much pain to enjoy life, I'll take her in to be euthanized.

Even if she doesn't get to live as long or as healthy of a life as she deserves, at least I was able to save her from that terrible life she had and gave her a home where she could feel safe, make friends, and behave like a real budgie. I mean, how many budgies in captivity can say they're part of a flock and live in an aviary? It's just so upsetting, especially since she's so young. She's the youngest individual in our house, even younger than Noah by a few months.
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Old 04-24-2017, 05:36 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

I'm very sorry you're going through this, it's amazing how attached we get to them, and it's even more amazing how anyone could ever treat them badly or not provide for them. I'm glad you're keeping her comfortable and happy, just spoil her rotten!

"Dance like nobody's watching..."
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Old 04-24-2017, 06:38 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

Quote: Originally Posted by EllenD View Post
I'm very sorry you're going through this, it's amazing how attached we get to them, and it's even more amazing how anyone could ever treat them badly or not provide for them. I'm glad you're keeping her comfortable and happy, just spoil her rotten!

"Dance like nobody's watching..."
Yeah, that monster was actually going to release her into the wild in the middle of the winter, luckily the person who rescued her convinced the hoarder to hand Alice over. Man, humans are idiots.

Anyways, she's definitely going to be getting as many carbs as she can eat, since budgies are carb junkies. I hope she'll live long enough for the grass to grow seeds so I can give them to her. They definitely enjoy their fresh grass seed. Hmm, someone should start a bird seed brand that offers fresh grass seed from over 10 species of grass. I mean, you can buy grass seed for your lawn, but that stuff definitely isn't safe for eating (pesicides and whatnot). I mean, stores sell raspberries, and those things are almost impossible to harvest without damaging them! Not to mention the thorns. And the hornets. Anyways, if you can sell raspberries, you sure as heck can sell fresh, organic grass seed for granivores. Got kind of off topic there...

Oh, and some jerk bit Alice's foot before I took her to the vet. Her poor little foot has blood stains on it from some dork chomping down on it. Now, one might be inclined to blame Noah, but 9/10 budgies find feet clinging to the bars of a cage irresistible. If it is Noah, this'll be his second foot biting incident this month, and I'll have to quarantine him for a while if he misbehaves again. It's not his fault, though, since it is breeding season and his beak has been extremely sharp lately. He just had his beak filed and I've set the lights to turn off sooner, so things should be fine now. Everybody's been pretty rowdy the past month or so because they're hormonal, but things are settling down a little. He's lived in the aviary with everyone for almost a year now, so it's probably just a fluke that he's biting toes.
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Old 04-24-2017, 06:57 PM
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Re: Good and Bad News from the Vet

I don't want to discourage anyone from getting a rescue, as these animals are truly deserving of a loving home. Nobody adopts a rescue because they are well socialized, have great genetics, or are fully trained. You get a rescue to help end the cycle of abuse and neglect in the pet industry, and to give them a loving home to live out the rest of their days. For the majority of animals in captivity, the wild can never be their home again, so we have to give them the best lives possible in captivity.
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