Baytril and Sun Conure

by Darci
(Winnipeg, Canada)

Hello I had written approximately a week ago in regards to my vet prescribing Baytril to my Sun Conure. After a week on the antibiotics I noticed her droppings started to carry an odor, the bubbles were increasing and also an obvious gas/fart sound was audible when she produced a dropping. What could cause this? I had a PCR done for Clostridia in March and it was negative. Also, Her sneezing has not gotten any better and she is still stretching constantly and holding up her foot, a very slight occasional tail bob, wagging her tail and picking her vent occasionally so the vet said to stop giving her the Baytril.

Now I am even more worried... has the Baytril made whatever problem it is worse? The smell to the droppings was not present before and now the bubbles are almost foam like. The straining to produce them has decreased however. I suggested a culture and she doesn't think it will do any good or give us any information.

She wants to go ahead with the x-rays and thinks maybe she has a retained egg? She was egg-bound in December but has been on Harrison's since February so I thought she wouldn't have problems with eggs anymore. Also she suggested she could possibly have peritonitis? There has been no yolk-coloured droppings and she is still quite playful/vocal. What do you think I should do now? I am so frustrated, I want to figure this out before it's too late! These issues have been ongoing for over a month now :( Thanks for any advice you can provide.

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Apr 05, 2009
Baytril and Sun Conure
by: The Vet

I can tell you what I recommend to my clients in cases like this, when birds present with these symptoms. I can also give you a list of differentials that cause this. But I unable tell you what is causing this in your case specifically. I also cannot give you recommendations about whether not and what kind of drugs to give.

Egg binding is a possible cause of these symptoms. Being on Harrison's and other complete diets will prevent egg binding, but since your bird has only be on a balanced diet for a short time, malnutrition can still play a small factor. Also, previous episodes of egg binding will greatly increase the chance of it happening again, even after a balanced diet is started.

Not always are PCRs accurate for several reasons, so, most times I will treat negatives, especially if the symptoms fit. Culturing the droppings could be helpful. I would do a culture for yeast, anaerobic bacteria, and spore-forming bacteria.

I think the sneezing is a separate problem from the intestinal gas. I would approach the sneezing with a different set of diagnostics - cultures, nasal flushes, medicate flushes, vitamin A injection, increased humidity, medicated and non-medicated nebulizing, and maybe endoscopy.

The stretching, wagging, and picking may be normal, or it may be in response to irritation, or abdominal discomfort and pain.

It is not likely that the Baytril contributed to the problem, unless it killed the normal flora, too, and allow yeast to populate the gut in high numbers.

May peritonitis, but not high on my list.

Your next best step is to do a series of radiographs. Start with plain films, then do a barium contrast study. This could give more pieces to the puzzle.

Dr B

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