Conure - could it have swallowed bottom of bell?

by Mel
(Sydney, Australia)

My Green Cheek Conure loves bells. I never put the small bells in his cage but most of his toys have medium sized bells on them and he shakes them around and play fights with them constantly. A while ago i noticed 1 of the bottom of the bells was missing and i couldnt find it in the bottom of the cage which made we worry that he has swallowed it. I took the toy out and he ended up being fine.

Now i have found the same thing has happened to a new toy i have put in there. Im hopeing the bottom of the bell is flicking out of the cage when he is shaking it around. It seems physically impossible for him to be able to swallow a piece of metal that size.

He seems normal but is it possible he has swallowed it?

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May 28, 2012
Conure - could it have swallowed bottom of bell?
by: Linda

Well, if you are buying bells made for a much larger bird, the possibility of him swallowing the ringer goes down. I would make sure you find the part though because it is going somewhere, and if you hve other pets, it could be going into them. Metal pieces can not only poison dogs and cats but can also cause a bowel obstruction that causes death if surgery is not performed right away. The ringers are going somewhere, so please find them because it is something potentially dangerous for children and pets.

I do not use bells with my Amazons, and they are larger birds. The ringers can be taken out, and can be swallowed if they are small enough. Most people think parrots and bells go together, and this is far from fact. Fact is, a nice hanging toy that uses only wooden pieces and no small metal parts is best for all parrots because your bird will exchange play with bells for being able to chew on his toys which keeps him occupied and also helps to keep beak honed down resulting in less trips to Avian Vet to have beak clipped.

By the way, never allow anyone except Avian Vet to clip toenails or beaks. Pet store employees can and do make deadly mistakes, and the beak is a dangerous place to clip since bird can bleed out very quickly if it is cut too much. This can happen later after clip is done if it is not done by a qualified professional like an Avian Vet. Also never allow dog groomers to clip nails or give baths either as they are experiened with dogs and possibly cats and NOT birds. Many birds have died from a groomer clipping nails before a bath instead of afterward which is correct method. If clipped before the bath, bird will start to bleed once feet are in water, and many have died from this, so take your bird to a licensed and trained avian vet for all grooming.

Thanks for writing because your letter gives us opportunity to tell people to stop buying toys with bells or to remove the bells once toys are home. Small toy parts are always a danger to our birds and never should be offered and this includes small beads too. Even a little Budgie can manage to swallow a small enough bead and these parts have to be surgically removed or bird will die.

Linda

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