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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > Your Budgie's Health > Diseases and Illnesses


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Old 02-10-2018, 01:07 PM
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Default High liver bile acids - ideas needed

Hi group,

I adopted a bunch of budgies last year and one of them is showing signs of liver disease. I have had budgies before with liver problems and done milk thistle for them along with beak trims. My budgie, Jojo, is under the care of a board certified avian vet. I just feel out of ideas or suggestions because I haven't encountered this kind of problem before. Jojo's liver problems are causing GI problems.

Jojo first took ill in August when he had constipation problems. He had a ball of poo on his bum. Veggies, extra water, bathing, etc, didn't take care of it. Fortunately there is a mobile vet who would see birds, so I had them over and they cleaned him up and prescribed an antibiotic. The problem cleared up, Jojo was pooping freely once again (so much poop!) and he rejoined his two little friends.

In November I noticed that his beak was starting to grow long and that he was having problems with constipation again. I started keeping a poop and food log. When Jojo first took ill I had been trying to better the budgies' diet with Zupreem and lots of veggies. I compared the ingredients on the food and wondered if Jojo had an allergy, so I went to plain seed and cautiously added different blends back in. A bird friend suggested that I use a probotic and I found something by Higgins called probiotic egg food and they all turned out to like eating that. We worked through the constipation with lots of veggies and I kept the cage super clean. However, by December, Jojo had a giant poo ball again that he could not take care of. It was attached to his tail and not his bum, but I couldn't tell that.

We went to the vet and I had a blood test done. Honestly, it was hard news to hear. His liver bile acids were 300 when they should be in the 70 range. We were prescribed antibiotics and milk thistle and although nobody like the milk thistle, it went down the hatch and he was once again out of bird jail and back with his friends.

Fast forward to two weeks ago - Jojo wasn't just not constipated, but he was vomiting. He was perfectly fine on Friday, but then we had a snowstorm and he flipped with the weather. He was a little sluggish and constipated on the Saturday. He was more active on Sunday and I thought it was just the weather, but then he went through a cycle of eating and vomiting. It was hard to watch. So again, to the vet...

Now he is in bird jail and missing his little friends despite being side by side in the cage. I am going to follow up with the vet, but I'm wondering...

1) What foods should I avoid for liver problems?
2) What foods should I feed to manage the liver problems?

The other budgies are quite healthy, but I think whatever bit of crud that they can live with, Jojo can't. I'm afraid that putting him back with the others means another constipation problem down the road and I can't afford all the vet bills. I pay a helper to come medicate him.

I'm looking for suggestions - really, any ideas at all - because I'm mentally exhausted and just can't think of what else I can do. He's such a complicated little guy. Thanks in advance!

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Old 02-10-2018, 05:48 PM
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Did your vet say what is causing the high level of bile acids, is that the only thing that was abnormal, does your bird have fatty liver disease? If your bird does have fatty liver disease, depending on the severity, it can be managed by diet and if the bird is overweight it will need to lose weight.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:50 PM
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Has JoJo been tested for AGY in addition to the liver problems?

Have you tried dandelion root in conjunction with the milk thistle?

You can buy powdered milk-thistle and dandelion root to mix in with his food.

Milk Thistle

Dandelion Root

I'd also suggest adding knotgrass (dried) which you can purchase through Amazon.

Knotgrass

Do you give the budgies Apple Cider Vinegar as a natural probiotic in their water?
I highly recommend using it for all your birds.
https://www.talkbudgies.com/articles-...r-vinegar.html

You can also consider doing an aloe-vera detox for JoJo

Aloe Vera: The Miracle Cure - Budgerigar Society of South Australia

Lily of the Dessert Aloe Vera Detox Formul

Start with 1/4 teaspoon in 8 oz of water and work up gradually to 1/2 detox formula 1/2 water (or whatever ratio under thee 1/2 and 1/2 ratio) that JoJo will tolerate.

You can also buy an aloe vera plant that has not been treated with pesticides or chemicals. Cut a small portion of the leaf, peel off the outer "skin" and feed the inner gel-like portion to JoJo as you would any vegetable.

https://www.talkbudgies.com/articles-...r-disease.html
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Old 02-10-2018, 06:12 PM
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Thanks for the advice. Here's some more info and answers to your questions...

Did your vet say what is causing the high level of bile acids, is that the only thing that was abnormal, does your bird have fatty liver disease? If your bird does have fatty liver disease, depending on the severity, it can be managed by diet and if the bird is overweight it will need to lose weight.

Jojo weighed 44 grams at his last vet visit and 48 at the December visit, so he is not overweight. No, the vet didn't say what could be causing the high bile acids. She wanted to try milk thistle for awhile and do another blood test. To be honest, I don't want to do another blood test as the first one was quite hard on Jojo - it took him four days to recover from it on top of being ill. We had to feed him juvenile formula because he wasn't eating afterwards :\

Do you give the budgies Apple Cider Vinegar as a natural probiotic in their water?

When Jojo took ill the second time, I started putting ACV in the water. I have done this years past too. I bought the organic stuff :-) I haven't given it though since December. I also have BeneBac at my disposal.

Have you tried dandelion root in conjunction with the milk thistle?

No. I didn't know it came in powdered form, thanks!

AGY didn't come up. I have four budgies (three adopted as a bunch) and a cockatiel and another budgie that I had before. Oh man, that link was scary! He did have a fecal gram stain done in December and it came back normal - it was just the bile acids that alerted the vet.
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Old 02-10-2018, 06:25 PM
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You might want to consider trying the Aloe Vera Detox since it is primarily high levels of bile in JoJo's liver that are the problem.

At the very least you could discuss it with your Avian Vet.
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