My albino ringneck dove is acting weird, and has become.. puffy.

by Kirsten
(Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada)

My name's Kirsten, and I've had an albino ringneck dove for just over two years (he's male, his name's Casper). Lately, Casper has been acting very strange, and I'm concerned that he might be ill or upset.

I know that birds fan and fluff their feathers sometimes when they're feeling hot, or if they're wet sometimes they make themselves puffy to fluff up and dry out their feathers (he likes to do that after a nice cool bath). For the last two weeks, Casper has been fluffy non-stop. This is unusual because we just moved into my mother's basement, and it's FREEZING down here.

I do everything I can to make sure Casper doesn't get sick because of the cold environment, so don't think I'm neglecting him keeping him in an icebox or anything like that. Casper is very well cared for. He has a little basket inside his cage that he sleeps in full of wood shavings and bedding straw from the pet store, and he's always fed and watered. He has so many toys and shiny objects to keep him amused it's difficult to see him in his cage half the time. And his refrigerator-sized cage is next to a window where I've placed a bird feeder so that he can socialize with the wild sparrows outside.

Casper's feathers aren't the only strange thing, his stool has changed too. It's gone from a stiffer, pale green and white to a liquidy more runny bright green with un-digested matter in it. He also hasn't been making as much noise, and normally, he won't shut up.

What's wrong with my baby?

Comments for My albino ringneck dove is acting weird, and has become.. puffy.

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Apr 30, 2016
Liked the update
by: Anonymous

I care. I'm really glad your bird is doing well. I have a 22 year old ring neck dove. I love him so much. He is sick at the moment, and reading that your bird was ok made me feel better. I truly don't like it when people get on these forums and scare the crap out of the person asking the question.

Nov 19, 2014
My ringneck dove
by: Anonymous

Glad your baby lived and is health.
I had my ringneck for over a decade (and he was given to me I think he was at least 15) and one day I came home to find him all puffy like that.

I called my aunt in a panic, (who had various bird-rearing experience) and she informed me that the puffy symptom meant he probably wasn't going to make it.

He died in my arms within 10 minutes.
I was so lucky I got to say goodbye in that way, holding him. Linda was just trying to help, I believe she knows and cares, too.

It is really a blessing that he is happy and healthy!
Wishing you all the best

Aug 07, 2012
He's fine now.
by: Kirsten

Not that anybody probably cares at this point because I wrote that more than four years ago, but my bird is fine now. We have no avian vets in my city, so Casper couldn't see one. I simply moved him from next to the window to under the heat vent. I then moved out of my mother's house soon after and now live in an apartment with Casper and my two dogs where I am allowed to keep the temperature how I WANT IT, not how she does.

MIRACULOUSLY, Linda, he didn't die. I wonder how that happened? Maybe it's because he didn't have pneumonia and I'm not some horrible terrible person and he wasn't so fargone? Maybe he was just stressed out and fanning his feathers and had diarhea for a little bit? Because he's almost seven now, and he's still alive and back to singing and chirping, and not shutting up.

Editor's note: Linda was speaking from experience, I am glad your bird lived. :-)

Oct 09, 2009
by: Linda

Hi, it's Linda again. If you can put him into a smaller cage for a while it will be easier to keep him at the temp he needs to be at. Sick birds can no longer regulate their body temperature, and need additional heat in the form of a heating pad taped to side of cage or under the cage. You can use masking tape to tape to side of a smaller cage. Your Avian vet will give you medicine to give him, and keeping him warm and covered all the time is critical to him recovering.

I'm not being mean or unfeeling. You asked for help, and I'm doing the best I can to help you save your bird's life. You can be mad at me, just help your bird before it's too late as I can tell you love him a lot.

Blessings to you both.

Oct 09, 2009
by: Linda

Your bird is dangerously ill and MUST BE SEEN BY AN AVIAN VET IMMEDIATELY. You just moved from one place to another, and it is cold in new place, so he has become ill from the change. Birds cannot go from 70 degrees to more than a 10 degree drop without getting pneumonia. Your bird is very sick and must see an Avian vet or die. You need to have him covered and supplemental heat in your basement area.

THIS IS CRITICAL, PLEASE GET HIM TO AN AVIAN VET, AND YOU MUST DO SOMETHING ABOUT KEEPING HIM WARM. HE HAS BECOME ILL BECAUSE OF THE COLD, AND WOOD CHIPS ARE DANGEROUS FOR YOUR BIRD, SO DISCARD THOSE. INFECTION and fungus LIVE IN STRAW, SO DISCARD IT. Your bird will need to be brought up to around 80-85 degrees while sick. He needs a cover for his cage, and the place you both are living in needs supplementary heat in the form of baseboard heater or other electrical heater. Do not use gas heat as this can kill your bird AND you if there is a tiny leak.Bring room temp up to around 70 and use a heating pad underneath his cage or taped to the side for additional heat. When heating pad is on, always be there to monitor it. I know he has a large cage, cover it!

GET HIM TO THE VET AS YOU ARE SEEING SIGNS THAT WILL GO FROM BAD TO WORSE AND RESULT IN DEATH. PLEASE GET HIM IN QUICKLY AS YOU CAN AND KEEP HIM WARM. If he stops eating, you will have to syringe feed him baby parrot handfeeding formula which you can find out here. Talk with your Avian vet about what you need to do, just please do something.


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