Pets are just as sensitive as kids. Illness catches them both earlier than everybody else. Where kids are privileged to express themselves in pain, silent pets suffice silently waiting for us to act. So, if you, too, are a budgie parent, keeping your budgie healthy is most important as birds who live indoors are more likely to feel discomfort.
Is your Budgie ill?
Seeing this little fluff ball struggling with diseases is heartbreaking. But what if we can arrest that disease before it gets on to our little bird. The best way to do this is to look for all the signs of illness in advance to take precautionary steps. To know how to identify a sick budgie, let’s learn all the probable signs.
Signs of Budgie Illness
Looking for all hints of your budgie falling ill soon would help get rid of sickness early on. Some of the more obvious yet quick signs are:
Increase in urination
If your budgie has diarrhea, he will have watery droppings. The reasons for contracting diarrhea could be any like stress, poor diet, or an infection.
Vomiting can be the result of bacterial infection. That means, your bird might have eaten tapeworm or candida.
Generally, birds sneeze one to two times a day to clear their wind pathway of dust. But if it becomes more frequent and is accompanied with colored nasal discharge, it could be more than just a sneeze.
Limping is not always a physical injury. Though it gives discomfort to your bird to walk, it is not always due to external wounds. Usually, this kind of limping doesn’t look red or swollen. The root of such a limping lies in an abdominal tumor pressing the nerves stretching to the bird’s legs.
Unless your pet is not too old, wing drooping indicates illness. On observing your budgies’ drooping wings, ask him to step up your finger. If he couldn’t, he is surely ill.
Sudden weight fluctuation
A sudden fluctuation might be either way. Your budgie gaining weight due to excess fat intake is a visible sign of an impending illness. Obesity, fatty liver disease, and heart problems are just a few probable illnesses that your budgie might catch from stuffing excess calories in.
The other extreme of weight fluctuation scale is losing it so much that it seems unnatural. Your budgie losing weight despite eating a proper diet should be a cause of great concern for you to prevent Budgie Illness.
Half closed eyes
You’ll always see your budgie active and fully up after he gets up in the morning. No amount of activity slows them down by shutting their eyes half. Either they are up and roaring or tired and asleep. If you are seeing your budgie with half-closed eyes nowadays, he needs a vet immediately.
Budgies fluff their feathers up when feeling uncomfortable due to fluctuating temperatures. They do this to give off excess heat off their body. But if this is happening more often and that too, without any real temperature fluctuations, your little bird is unwell.
Not eating well
Just like humans, budgies’ also lose appetite when they aren’t feeling high-spirited. If your bird is leaving a lot of food on his plate after every meal, he is feeling low. And the chances are high that this low energy is coming from an illness simmering inside.
One of the most common illnesses in budgies is feather loss. There are quite a few reasons that can lead to feather loss in budgies:
- Molting- A natural process of shedding feathers to make way for the new ones. It is not a sign of illness.
- Self-plucking- It is a sign of mental illness and is undertaken by a bird if he is extremely depressed. This illness is fatal for the bird.
- Parasites- Parasites might cause an infection that makes budgies’ feathers fall out. It needs urgent medical care.
- Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease- Commonly known as PBFD or PCD, a virus is the cause of falling feathers. It must be treated as soon as possible.
- French Moult Virus- Causing tail feathers and secondary wing feathers to fall out, this virus affects juvenile budgies.
How to keep your Budgie healthy
Nobody must take the risk of letting his budgie fall sick. It is always better to be safe from early on. To prevent your bird from falling sick, taking simple measures can also keep the big diseases away:
- Choose a big cage that’s enough for your budgie not to feel suffocated and stressed. A cage measuring at least 18 inches in length, width, and height would suffice.
- Keep the temperature of your bird’s cage around 90-degrees Fahrenheit for his comfort. The heat helps the bird’s body build immunity to fight illnesses.
- Give your budgie diffused sunlight, if possible. Vitamin D is necessary for a bird’s health.
- Add humidity to your pet’s environment with a humidifier.
- Move the perch to a low spot in the cage or remove it altogether. This would allow the bird easy access to perches. Hopping on these keeps them healthy and prevents them from multiple diseases, especially related to feet and beak.
- Have several toys and play with your budgie.
- Feed him fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Avoid avocados, chocolates, peanuts, caffeine, etc. as they can be toxic for your pet.
- Put the bird’s food and water bowls within easy reach of him.
- Clean his dishes every day. And for the cage, give it a weekly wash to rinse away all the dirt and bacteria.
- Give him fresh water daily. This keeps the bird hydrated along with regulating all his body functions.
- Let him out of the cage every day for at least an hour, though under observation.
Budgie Illness Conclusion
Budgies are hardy birds and they prefer not to bother their human companion by letting their sickness appear on the surface. If you see any such sign, be quick to act as your budgie already has had enough until now. The best bet, then, would be to take your bird to the vet immediately before it gets too late.
I used photos of my healthy Budgies. I do not have any sick Budgerigars. Contact your veterinarian if you notice any symptoms to your pet bird.