Wellness Tips and Signs of Illness: Birds



Pet birds should all be evaluated for a post purchase exam immediately after you purchase or adopt your new avian companion. During this exam, our doctors and staff will examine your pet for any obvious signs of physical illness, teach you how to properly feed and care for your specific species of bird in ways the pet store or breeder cannot, and offer you appropriate testing to ensure your new investment is happy and healthy. Our goal here is to help set you and your pet up for a long, happy life of good health and preventative medicine.

After their initial exam, birds should be examined at least on an annual basis. During these exams we get the opportunity to answer any questions you may have about your bird’s health and behavior over the year. We will examine your bird to evaluate any changes that may be important such as weight changes, skin/feather changes, or any irregular growths that may be important to detect. We are often able to find subtle problems that you can not at home. This allows us to prevent illness and disease, educate you on changes you may need to make at home to improve your bird’s health, and share with you any new advances we have learned during the year in avian medicine.

Signs of Illness in Birds

If during the year, your bird exhibits any of these signs of illness, we would strongly recommend scheduling an exam with one of our specialists:

  • Decrease or increase in appetite
  • Increase in urination
  • Increased drinking or thirst
  • Feather or skin changes
  • Discharge from the eyes or nose
  • Vomiting
  • Sneezing or wheezing
  • Limping
  • Fluffed feathers
  • Tail bobbing while breathing
  • Sudden behavior changes including biting or screaming
  • First time laying eggs
  • Decrease in activity level
  • Voice change
  • Change in flight ability
  • Spending more time on the bottom of the cage
  • Weakness or inability to perch
  • Overgrown or discolored beak
  • Change in droppings: color or consistency
  • Straining to poop
  • Wing or wings drooping
  • Diarrhea
  • Weight loss or weight gain

Signs of Illness Requiring Emergency Treatment

If your bird exhibits any of these signs or experiences any of these events, your bird may be having an emergency and you should call us right away:

  • Bleeding
  • Not eating (anorexia)
  • Open-beak breathing (respiratory distress)
  • Dangling wing or leg
  • Hits window or wall while flying
  • Lands in boiling water or hot substance
  • Bitten or attacked by cat/dog
  • Struck by ceiling fan
  • Eats toxic plant or substance
  • Lands in glue trap
  • Sudden inability to vocalize
  • Inability to fly
  • Prolapsed vent or cloaca
  • Inability to pass an egg or egg bound

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9:00 AM-7:00 pm


9:00 AM-7:00 pm


9:00 am-7:00 pm


9:00 am-7:00 pm