Chronic Vomiting in Budgie, please help

by kelsey
(vancouver, wa)

I know this is a bit long, but I really don't know who else to ask at this point

What could be causing my budgie's chronic vomiting?

For almost a year now, my budgie Simon has been vomiting up whole seeds mixed with mucous and it's recently been getting worse. The mucous is clear, and when he vomits he usually stretches out his neck once, then moves his beak a bit as a small amount of mucous gathers around the tip of his beak, then he shakes his head from side to side and flings it. I usually find it dried around his head feathers. I have not noticed a pattern to when he vomits (for example, after eating). He still has a decent appetite and his droppings seem normal, but sometimes he vomits multiple times a day.

I've taken him at least three times to see exotic and/or avian veterinarians and all three times they couldn't find the problem. I took him to the vet just a few weeks ago because he was not only vomiting up seeds and mucous, but making a sort of kicking motion near his vent with his foot. The vet examined him, looking in his mouth, around his crop area, and his vent, but didn't find anything. His vent was clean. She recommended a diet of Lafaber Nutri-berries because they won't eat pellets, so that's what I have been giving them for the past few weeks. Also lettuce and other vegetables.

Although tonight I have them in separate cages because Simon was having a fit of vomiting, he is usually housed with another parakeet that has never exhibited these symptoms and is a high-energy, healthy bird. I do separate them when Simon starts vomiting and clean out their water & food dishes, and any object the vomit touched just in case it is contagious (although it really doesn't seem to be).

I'm starting to think he might have some sort of tumor since the symptoms seem to be getting a bit worse.

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Apr 22, 2018
My budgie has this problem too
by: MamaBird

I adopted a bunch of budgies and one of them turned out to have occasional vomiting at his previous home.

This has happened four times now, all with predictable results. He goes full stop - no eating, pooping or chirping, occasional vomiting. After a few days of treatment, he's fine. The only other pattern is that this happens every two months like clockwork! I have taken him to an avian vet four times, come home with antibiotics and ranitidine. After this latest time, he did it again - full stop - then two days later he was fine.

After the fourth time, I asked the vet if we were treating the right problem and he seems sure it is a liver issue that is causing the GI issue. My budgie did have a blood test done after the second time which showed elevated bile acids.

I don't know what the answer is either, but we're probably going to go for a second opinion soon.

Dec 08, 2011
Possibly mating behaviour?
by: Anonymous

I don't wish to make light of what may indeed be a health problem, but if your Simon has been "vomiting" for a year and is still healthy, he may actually be demonstrating sexual behaviour. Would I be right to guess his age at around 1.5 to 2 years, 2.5 at most?

I'm not vet-trained, but I have kept budgies for quite a while and I've observed that young male budgies, just sexually mature, may regurgitate their food even if there's no other bird to feed. What they bring up is exactly as you describe, whole seeds in sticky clear mucus. Quite often they'll simply spit it out or spray it around because they don't know what to do with the mouthful they've brought up. The kicking motion is also consistent with budgie mating behaviour - the males will kick their object of affection in an attempt to mount it. If there's no object, they'll kick empty air!

If Simon is still completely healthy, behaving normally and most importantly isn't losing weight, I don't think you should worry too much.

Dec 06, 2011
Chronic Vomiting in Budgie, please help
by: Linda

In case my other answer slips through, I want to make a correction here. The disease I meant to discuss is called Proventicular Dilitation also highly contageous and caused by a virus. I'll try and get the first answer pulled before it goes to you.

Have your Avian Vet test for PD as I meant to talk about it and not the Beak and Feather Disease. The PD is highly contageous, and I'm not sure if there is a cure for it now or not. Back when I dealt with it in the 80's with a Blue and Gold Macaw, there was no cure, and great strides have been made since then. Avian Vet I spoke with at that time said there was no cure, and bird died. Luckily no other birds got the disease, and for that, I'm eternally grateful.

Thank You,

Editor's note: I pulled the incorrect post. :-)

Dec 06, 2011
Budgie vomiting
by: Tracie

Dr B is not able to answer questions right now, but I know for certain he would suggest you find an avian vet that will do x-rays and blood tests to determine the cause and not just allow you to take the bird back home sick. He would NEVER suggest Lefaber's anything either, because they are so full of chemicals that will lower your bird's immune system.

Please Find an Avian Vet that is willing to do x-rays and blood tests. Dr B wrote our Switching Birds To Pellets article that might be helpful to you for getting your birds to eventually eat pellets.

I hope your new avian vet will be able to find a treatment that helps your bird. So sorry you and your bird have had such a rough time.

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