Goffin Cockatoo plucking

by wendy wong
(reno, nv)

I have a Goffin Cockatoo who is 3 and half years old. Recently she has plucked all her down feathers near her butt area and over plucked/preened and caused it to bleed, I have applied Aloe Vera on it, and it seemed to stop the bleeding and is healing slowly. However i noticed since this happened over a week ago, just recently today her skin area on the top of her head had bubbled up like a a blister would, except when i touch it there appear to be no fluid inside there, just feels hollow and blown up like a bubble around her skin patch area on her head.... what could this be caused by?

We recently got a puppy, we tried to give our cockatoo the same attension she used to get, since the puppy came along she started plucking and hurting herself.... I am worried it may get or already got infected. She is still eating, drinking and pooping normal. I want to know if you have experienced this bubbling of the skin before and can give me some advise on how to treat it. I called our local vet and they want $350 upfront before they will look at our bird and extra cost on top for treatment...this is alot of money that we dont have right now... i want to see if you can help before i have no option but to take the bird in to the vet...
please advise me asap.
thank you

Comments for Goffin Cockatoo plucking

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Feb 17, 2013
female adopted goffin age around 7 ish.
by: Anonymous

My goffin female started screaching alot yesterday and noticed today a pile of poop around her bum caked there .??
I gave her a bath
Any advice as vets are closed on Sunday and weather is bad to go anywhere.

Editor's note: I personally only know to call a 24hr clinic. In the future if you want people to see and answer, you need to post a question, not an answer here to another question, on our Parrot Questions page.

Feb 10, 2012
5 year old
by: Anonymous

started to pluck...I am always home ...no crazyness in our home...husband travels but always has from his (Quincy) beginnings feed ZuPremm Avian Entrees Gardenn Goodness and for treat peanut from petsmart....Help?

Editor's note: If you want people to see and answer, you need to post a question, not an answer here to another question, at Parrot Questions

You will need to Find an Avian Vet for your bird so it can be examined to determine what is wrong and what the potential treatment might be.

Jan 31, 2012
Baby (Quncy)
by: helen

My Goffin at age six started plucking no change in his life...eating great saw Vet gave him Trans made him worse

Oct 24, 2008
Cockatoo blister
by: The Vet

(It seems my software is acting up and things that I post do not show up. I believe I posted this before, but it is not here now.)

You should find another veterinarian and take your bird in.

I would need to see your bird before I could recommend any treatment. What it sounds like though is an inflated air sac, which is not as serious condition but does need treatment.

As for the plucking, this is such a common problem in Goffin's cockatoos. Although I think that the new puppy is the inciting factor, I can offer some generic treatments for this problem, but you still need to find an avian veterinarian, preferably one that is board certified.

Here is my recommendations for approaching feather damaging behaviors.

Feather plucking is a complicated problem, and often times is not curable, unless a cause can be found. A cause can only be found if you have some diagnostic work performed by a veterinarian.

I recommend that you first take your bird to see an avian veterinary specialist. You should have a thorough work up done, including blood work, cultures, viral screening and possibly skin biopsies.

In the meantime there are some things that you can do to improve his chances of successful treatment. First, make sure he is on a good diet. The best you can feed is Harrison's High Potency pellets. This should make up 80% of the diet. The remaining 20% can be any treat, but focusing on fresh vegetables.

Second, you should bathe him every day, alternating days with water, and Avi-x Bird Rain. The day you bathe with the water you should really wet him thoroughly. However, keep in mind that if he has no feathers he is going to get cold, so keep him warm with a heating pad on the cage, or a space heater, or keep him in the bathroom until he is mostly dry. Even when he is not wet he will be cold, so keeping a heating pad on his cage at all times may be beneficial.

Third, you should teach your bird how to forage. There are many ways to do this. You can make things yourself, or by toys and feeders that help. The Captive Foraging DVD is great to teach you about foraging. Foraging toys are good too.

Fourth, As a general rule your bird should be drinking from a water bottle because they are more sanitary. In addition, with a water bottle you can dispense this medication, "Pluck No More." It has helped about 30% of my patients improve or stop plucking altogether.

Fifth, give your bird a full spectrum light. This will be very beneficial.

Hope this helps. Please let me know.

Dr B

You can purchase these items mentioned right here at Tracie's Parrot Supply Store

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