Healthy, properly fed birds will exhibit certain features. Contact your avian veterinarian for an examination.
• The bird has a proper ratio of muscle, bone and fat.
• The beak is smooth and shiny without signs of peeling.
• The nares (nostrils) are clean and free of accumulations.
• The bird stands erect and alert on the perch.
• The respiration is smooth and even with no sounds of wheezing.
• The droppings are moist, the urine is clear and the urates are white.
The feathers fit together like a garment - no bald spots, no picked
feathers, and no tattered, broken or abnormally-colored feathers.
The feet grip the perch strongly and evenly. The bottoms of the feet
show a definite ....pattern—they are not smooth; nor do they show
• The nails are the proper length, smooth and shiny.
• The skin on the legs and face is glistening, smooth, and soft with no signs of flaking.
• There is no sign of swelling or bleeding on the body.
• The bird is calm and does not bite, scream, or behave in an aggressive manner.
IMPROPER NUTRITION is the cause of 90% of health problems and the leading cause of death in pet birds
Improper nutrition involves all of the systems of the body and is seen as: abnormalities in body weight and shape; unusual appearances of feathers, nails, beaks and skin; undesirable behavior; and disturbances in all the body's systems. Nutritional deficiencies appear to accelerate the aging process of birds, primarily through the loss of moisture and tissue elasticity.
Often, the signs of improper nutrition in pet birds are not apparant or go completely overlooked by the owner.
The value of a proper diet over the life of the bird is monumental. Birds fed a poor diet will become malnourished, which will start a chain of events leading to a decline in the bird's overall health. The
digestive system suffers first. The bacterial population of the digestive tract becomes unbalanced. Once this has occurred, opportunistic pathogens find it easier to invade, and gram-negative rods and yeast counts
This opens the door for bacterial infections and other ailments related to the imune system.
Over time every part of the body will reflect the
condition of the bird's health. If the bird reaches the latter stages of improper nutrition, damage to internal organs may be so severe that it is too late to save the bird.
Any change in your bird’s eating habits, behavior or personality could be due to illness. It is important to discuss these changes with your veterinarian. Your bird’s health may depend on it.