When it comes to parrots there are some common health issues you will have to watch out for. But with good care for your parrot you will have a bird who's with you for a very long time. So here's what health issues to look out for and how to avoid them and properly care for your parrot.
First things first, with over 350 different species of parrots I can't possibly tell you the most common for each one. You will be wise to get a book about your specific breed of parrot and always discuss health concerns with your parrots veterinarian. Make sure to find one who has experience with parrots, or your particular species of parrot. But here are the 5 most common diseases to watch out for in most parrots.
* Aspergillosis – A fungal infection that causes respiratory distress and can be fatal. It’s difficult to treat and may require months of medication and treatment to cure. Signs include changes in your parrot’s breathing or vocalization; gasping; or wheezing. This disease can be prevented by keeping your bird clean and dry. Stop mold from growing and you'll avoid this infection.
* Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease (PBFD) - This is incurable and contagious to other birds. It causes feather loss and beak lesions. You will need blood testing to get a diagnosis, but PBFD is fatal, and with no cure the most humane thing to do would be put the bird to sleep.
* Pacheco's Disease (PDV) – You might see symptoms such as lethargy, diarrhea, ruffled feathers, sinusitis, anorexia, conjunctivitis, and tremors in the neck, wing and legs. Birds who get this can die from massive liver necrosis. Death from this disease can occur suddenly though. He will need to be quarintined as this is a highly contagious disease. Stress seems to be something that can cause a parrot to get this disease.
* Psittacosis (chlamydiosis and parrot fever) - this disease typically causes respiratory distress, but not always. Sometimes it's symptomless. It can be transmitted to humans. To prevent your parrot from getting this disease a proper diet, no overcrowding, and a good ventilation system are all important to keeping this from spreading.
* Feather plucking – This isn't really a disease per se, but it is something which can be concerning and difficult for parrot and owner. It can be caused by many things including poor diet, poor hygiene, or emotional problems. Make sure you feed your parrot a well balanced diet of seeds, pellets, and fruits and vegetables. Clean your bird and his cage regularly. Emotional problems might be harder to deal with, but extra interaction might help. If nothing else you might figure out what's making your parrot emotionally upset enough to pluck his feathers and can hopefully remove that thing which is upsetting him.
Proper Parrot Care
Taking care of your parrot is going to be very important to make sure that you don't end up losing your parrot to one of these fatal diseases. That means a healthy diet, plenty of chance to stretch his wings, watching for household dangers, and keeping him in a clean environment. And of course quick and proper veterinary care when it's warranted. Should your parrot come down with any of these symptoms you will want to get to the veterinarian sooner rather than later:
* change in behavior or attitude
* change in color, odor, or consistency of droppings
* change in quantity or quality of feathers (possibly as the result of self-mutilation)
* dirt around the face or feathers
* discharge from the eyes, nose, or vent
* Fluffy feathers. This means your bird is having a hard time regulating his temperature
* Unable to walk or hold his head up
* loss of appetite
* panting or labored breathing
* too much sleep
If you notice any of these symptoms, then get yourself an appointment for your parrot right away. If you keep your parrot healthy with regular veterinarian check ups and proper diet and hygiene, then you will have your parrot for many years to come.