Call your veterinarian immediately for any of these conditions:
- Bleeding that can’t be stopped is a real bird health medical emergency. Too much blood loss may lead to the death of the bird. Apply direct pressure to the area if possible and immediately take the bird to an avian veterinarian. Minor bleeding can be controlled with styptic powder or cornstarch, but don’t pack it into any wounds, feather follicles or mucus membranes because it could damage the bird’s tissue and lead to many other problems.
- Blood in vomit or poop is never normal and is a sure sign of a bird health issue. Take the bird to the vet immediately. Burns seems to be a common accident, especially with free-flighted birds. Try to cool the burned area with cool water and take the bird to the veterinarian. Don’t apply any ointments or butter to any burned areas. These can cause heat retention and cause damage to tissues.
- Balancing issues. Staggering, walking in circles, lying on the bottom of the cage, usually indicate serious weakness, shock, or possible neurological issues. Tremor and rigidity may indicate your bird is having a seizure. Birds with this condition need to be put into a warm, dark, and quiet area and quickly taken to an avian veterinarian.
- Ingestion of poisons. If possible, take a sample of the poison with you to the avian veterinarian right away. Bring the labels from any chemicals that the bird might have gotten ahold of. The vet might wash out the bird’s crop and administer activated charcoal to absorb the poisons.
- Ingestion of foreign objects. Early care will allow for easier extraction of the object while it is still located in the crop. If you wait too long the object could move into the proventriculus or ventriculus or even intestine, where removing it is much more difficult and can be very dangerous.
- Deep puncture wounds, especially one caused by a predator animal like a dog or cat, require immediate avian veterinary attention. Deep or gaping cuts need to be treated quickly as well. Any wound to the eye, chest, or abdomen should be checked as soon as possible. Apply direct pressure to the wound area to control the bleeding and get the bird to a vet.
- Leg or wing fractures where no bone is showing may be splinted prior to going to the vet to help control pain and to prevent the bird from making the problem any worse.
- Difficulty breathing and wheezing are symptoms requiring immediate avian veterinary attention. These birds may have a respiratory obstruction and time is critical. Your veterinarian may need to insert an air sac tube. Avoid handling the bird but see the vet immediately.
- Straining without stopping. This can be an indication of egg binding or intestinal or cloacal disease. Place the bird in a warm and humid place and seek immediate advice from a veterinarian about bird health.
- Uncontrollable itching. Itching that results in constant scratching, pecking at the skin might be an allergic reaction or exposure to some toxic substance on the skin. Give the bird a bath to remove any contaminants, and see your veterinarian.
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