Follow-up CenterThreads made in the Emergency Room forum will be moved here by staff as a way to follow-up with members after their budgie emergency.
This keeps the E.R. for only the most current emergencies.
On Monday July 6, Gambit lost his mate of four years and at first I thought he was grieving, but now I suspect there is something further going on.
Willow, his mate, lost the feeling in her legs. The vet suspected it was due to an ovary tumor pressing on her sciatic nerves. On the final day when I elected to let her pass away, there was some crackling present in her lungs. I opted not to do tests.
Since July 4 (two days before Willow's passing), Gambit has been fluffed up and sleeping a lot. Nearly all day. I figured it was due to Willow being relatively immobile and tired and he was just staying with her. It continued after she was gone and I chalked it up to grief. He's been spending a lot more time with me than usual. However, I really looked at him today and... I'm worried. I was able to pick him up, pet him, preen his pin feathers, kiss him on the head and cup his entire body in my hands. He is normally VERY stand-offish. Even Willow wasn't allowed to touch him. He looked uncomfortable while I was doing this, but didn't fight.
He is still eating, preening and pooping normally. He is on a free-fed seed diet with greens and/or millet every couple days. I haven't seen him drink, but I haven't been with him all day and I imagine he's had some water. I can't hear his breathing and there is no tail bobbing present. I don't have a scale to weigh him, but he does feel a little lighter. Then again, it could be my imagination? The only other change in his environment was an A/C that I purchased on the 4th. We were going through a heat wave, so the temperature in my room has fluctuated between 68 and 86 degrees. It's finally evened out to around 75 today. I gave him a heat pad and I've turned off the A/C.
I'm going to call my avian vet in the morning, but I probably won't get an appointment until Monday or Tuesday. Until then, what can I do? Also, what costs can I expect? I won't deny him healthcare, but I'm not exactly swimming in money. I imagine there will be an exam fee, blood tests and maybe an xray if his lungs are crackling?
Hello firstly I am sorry for the loss of your other little budgie , it is hard making that decision you made and I applaud you for doing so, crackling sound usually indicate a respiratory infection of some sort.
Budgies can accommodate hot /cold weather in normal situations.
As you bought an ac ,the temperature fluctuation combined with his grief and stress could bring on some sickness.
I agree taking him to the vet is a good idea.
Until you can get there, keep him warm get some Apple Cider Vinegar with mother in it place a couple of drops of this in the drinking water. if possible get some probiotics sprinkle over the seed/pellet mix every day. Keep him company and let him know you are there for him. If you haven't already then give the cage a complete clean use vinegar to clean.
If he is breathing rapidly or showing signs of respiratory distress then use a tent over the cage and use steam with Eucalyptus oil in it to help with breathing.
I hope he is better soon please let us know what the results are ?
I'm sorry for your loss of Willow.
It's a shame to hear that Gambit is so sick at this time as well.
Cathy has given you excellent advice on how to care for him until you can get him to the Avian Vet.
You can also provide him with a millet spray soaked in electrolyte solution to help stimulate his appetite.
With regard to the costs of the Avian Vet, many will work with you to set up a payment plan. The fees charged may vary depending on the area where you live as well as each individual vet clinic.
Hopefully you have an "emergency fund" set up for vet visits.
Best of luck with Gambit. I'll be sending lots of positive thoughts, healing energy and prayers for him. Please provide an update in this thread when he's had his vet appointment.
Gambit has a bit more energy today than yesterday, though he is still puffed and more lethargic than normal. His poops are normal and he's e/d just fine. I called the vet this AM and I have an appointment for 2:00 today. Hopefully I'll just dump $65 into a vet check and everything will turn out normal.
Another fact I forgot to mention in my original post is he hasn't masturbated since Saturday, I'm pretty sure. He's usually a very raunchy budgie, so this is another concern.
On a more personal note... I'm so scared. I just lost Willow and now Gambit is sick and I don't know what I'll do if I lose him too. I mean, okay. Realistically, I'll move on. But... I just don't want to. Willow was only five. Gambit is only four. They're so young.
Anyways, thanks for the advice. Hopefully the vet can help me out later today.
To be honest, I'm disappointed with my avian vet visit. The vet wasn't able to tell me anything that I didn't already know - that he could be depressed, could be sick, that he's lost weight, but in order to tell you why, you need to spend more money.
Look, I if anyone, understands the industry. I've worked in clinics before and I'm training to be a vet tech. But to charge me $68 for you to say you don't know? I'm really frustrated. They printed out a recommended treatment plan for me that included a recheck, a full avian blood panel, and two xray views and it came out to a whopping $521.
That's on top of the $109 I paid today, which included an exam and a fecal test.
I'm just... arg. This industry has some really bad flack for being greedy and not "there" for the pets and I really want to defend it, but how can I when they're charging $247 for a flipping blood test?!
Anyway, I grabbed some vitamins that they recommended for Gambit (nekton s) and some more millet, since I was out. I'm going to offer that to him 24/7, since he's underweight - only 26g. His keelbone is protruding. I don't have any apple cider vinegar with mother or probiotics, but do you guys still recommend that now that I have the vitamins?
I understand your frustration Jessica. Even the best vet's sometime seem to need to trouble shoot for awhile. If it were me I would use pro b's and the ACV. I would also soak the millet in electrolyte to help stimulate his appetite and make sure he doesn't dehydrate. His gram stain on the fecal must not have shown any bacteria present ? Hopefully some of our other folk's can offer you some advice as to what to do for now...
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He came down from glory and praises untold
He came down to man fashioned in their way
He came down to rescue, He came down to save