blue and purple beak?

by elizabeth
(las cruces nm)

my friends parrot passed away last night. its beak turned blue and purple a few days before it passed? we called vets and they gave her some medicine but didnt seem to help. he wheezed alot and had drainage coming from his nose. please send me your feedback on this. he was barely a lil over a year old. thank you for help. sincerely r.i.p keeko

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Jul 21, 2009
sick birds
by: Linda

Birds have to be watched very closely all the time. They will attempt to hide their illnesses, and if one is not watching closely, an infection becomes pneumonia, and bird will sometimes not respond to medicine if infection has become too bad.

In this case, the first signs were not seen as a threat. Anytime there is any mucous coming from eyes, nose, mouth or anus, this is an infection. Birds will not "just get well" like we do, they will always need to be taken immediately to an Avian vet at the first sign of sickness.

So, as I understand it, maybe the first signs were not taken seriously or just missed entirely. Birds are delicate creatures and can get infections from being around other sick birds or sick humans. If human has a cold or other illness, it is recommended that a face mask be worn when feeding, watering and cleaning bird's dishes and cages. They are prone to "catch" bacterial infections from others or from being kissed and such as that. Birds have no gram negative bacteria, and this is their natural, pristine state. They can tolerate some negative gram bacteria until the count starts rising, and then bird can no longer handle it, gets sick and if left untreated dies.

It appears that your friends did love their bird, and evidently did not catch the first signs of illness. Sometimes these signs are as simple as a change in energy level or behavior, so one must always be watchful for anything that appears "different" about our birds as these can be the first signs of illness. The next phase is runny eyes, nose or upset stomach. The last phase is where the infection has permeated bird's entire body, and sometimes medicines are just too late.

If a necropsy can be performed on this bird, that would also be a wise move. There are deadly infections that do not respond to antibiotics like New Castle's disease and Psittacosis. Psittacosis or Parrot Fever will only respond to one of the Tetracyclines. I caught this from a sick bird in a store where I worked, and doctors refused to believe that I could have Parrot Fever. They gave me several different types of antibiotics, and my condition worsened to the point of hospitalization. Once disease was properly diagnosed and treated, my recovery was very fast. Both New Castle's and Psittacosis are highly contageous and County and State officials have to be notified by vets, so other birds can be quaranteened long enough to be treated and deemed "safe" again. Either one of the above diseases can wipe out an entire State's chicken and turkey farms, not to mention parrots in the area.


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