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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > Your Budgie's Health


Your Budgie's Health Learn about avian health and vet care. This forum does not substitute for veterinary expertise.

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  #1  
Old 05-23-2016, 08:08 PM
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Default Obese and Inactive

Okay, so Lara definitely seems to be overweight. She receives a good diet with lots of sprouts and veggies, but she definitely isn't active enough. She spends most of her time just standing in one spot and not really moving. She seems healthy, although I think she might have some allergies or something as her eyelids are a little pink, and I have to take her to the vet to have a lump looked at. I think it might be a lipoma.

Lara has a big personality and a lot of energy, but she doesn't do anything to use up that excess energy. I don't doubt that her obesity is negatively affecting both her physical and mental health. She's unable to fly properly because of how fat she is, and again, she has low stamina due to obesity and lack of exercise. Basically, she's fat because she doesn't get enough exercise, and she doesn't exercise because she's too fat.

I honestly don't know how to get her to exercise more, especially since she isn't hand tame. Do you have any advice? She lives in a very big double-flight cage in an indoor aviary with seven other budgies. She's part English too, so she doesn't really have anything going for her.

I feel bad because she's so big and awkward, making it hard for her to move around. She's like a turkey among chickens. Basically, she's too fat to be active, and the less active she is, the fatter she gets! I just don't know how I can help her get more exercise.

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Last edited by Teddscau; 05-23-2016 at 08:45 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-23-2016, 09:11 PM
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Robyn, what does she weigh ? I think the best thing you could do is to seperate her from the flock for feeding times and monitor her weight for progress.
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  #3  
Old 05-23-2016, 09:52 PM
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I honestly couldn't tell you how much she weighs. The most recent she was weighed was at the Humane Society in Toronto more than a year and a half ago. I think she was around 45 grams, and Rumi was 46 O_o. Rumi must have been kind of gross to look at if she was heavier than Lara.

Honestly, I don't see her eat from the dish all that much. Everyone else seems to eat more than her. Oh, and apparently our kitchen scale broke, so I guess I'll have to figure something out...

Man, things aren't good with her. Charlie knocked her off her swing when I was trying to grab him to give him his painkillers. She crashed to the bottom of the cage, and she had to try half a dozen times to fly up and grab the side of the cage to climb up. Things aren't good. I think I might have to start taking her out of the cage so she actually has to move around.
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  #4  
Old 05-23-2016, 11:23 PM
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Hi Robyn,

First off, 45g doesn't seem like an excessive weight especially for a full or partial English budgie but some photos could definitely give us a better visual assessment - and the most basic sign is your bird taking on a rounder shape. I recently felt an abundance of body mass all around my big boy Chewie when I held him to confirm that he clearly needs a diet and/or more exercise. Be aware of round bulges on Lara's chest and an abundance of mass in her belly area. A simple point to note: If Lara feels like she weighs more than your other birds or more than she use to just by holding her in your hand, then attention is surely needed. Just holding something in your hand is the most instinctive way to gauge it's heft

Chewie and his buddy Rocco both look the same size, but Chewie outweighs Rocco by at least 10g.

Like Randy says, the first step is cut down your bird's daily feed. Birds will often eat as much feed that's available to them without knowing that they're overeating. Exercise is also highly encouraged by just letting them out of the cage more often and allowing them to roam freely in as broad an area as possible, under your attention of course. I am still quite interested to see some current photos of Lara to get a general idea of how hefty she may be.
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Last edited by Jedikeet; 05-23-2016 at 11:51 PM.
  #5  
Old 05-23-2016, 11:38 PM
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I'll have to borrow my cousin's camera to get some pictures. The last time I had to hold her, she felt very heavy. I could also feel a fair bit of "extra padding" on her. If eating too much is part of the problem, it must be because Ziggy feeds her often. Well, not as often as Pollo feeds Rumi, but then again, Rum actually moves.

Oh, and the budgies have the doors on their cage open all day since we've moved them to their aviary. I'm going to take her out tomorrow and try to get her to play on the floor, though.
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  #6  
Old 05-24-2016, 06:36 AM
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Robyn, why don't you make her work for her food? instead of having it in a cup scatter a small amount of seed so she has to move around to find it. Also let her have more green food types. Blue was very overweight and tended to sit in the feed dish and simply eat for the sake of it. Since having his lump removed and his weight loss he is a different bird. he is even starting to play with the toys on the floor pushing things and running around. He can now get some altitude and fly quicker too. It takes time but the reward will be worth it.
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:38 AM
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I agree with the previous posters.

If Lara is truly overweight then she needs to be kept in a cage separate from the other budgies and her food rationed.
Making her forage for her food will definitely help.
Additionally, it will be important for you to work with her on a regular and consistent basis to ensure she gets the exercise she needs.

All one needs to do is look through the Budgie Articles section of this forum to see the medical problems resulting from obesity in budges.

It may be prudent to have her checked by an Avian Vet to determine if she has a medical condition that is contributing to the problem.

Best wishes in helping Lara become more active so she can have a happy and healthy life.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:25 PM
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Thanks guys. I guess I'll have to be pretty hands on to help her, eh? She'll definitely need a lot of encouragement to be more active. She's a young bird, and I can't stand the thought that her body will begin to shutdown if she doesn't start losing weight.

I'll put her in the other cage and set up some foraging pods for her to eat from, no food dishes. I'm setting up her cage right now, and I'm going to put a kabob in, along with her favourite Scooter-Z toy. I've put an atom in for her to hang out on, too. She's not getting a platform perch.


EDIT
I just put her in her cage. Okay, she's definitely way more than 45g. She's probably more around 60g. I don't think I could feel her keel. She's REALLY fat. Man, she is so fat! I didn't realize how bad she's gotten! I think I'm going to take her out and have her roam around on the floor, looking for Dr. Harvey's. Man, she's fat >_<.
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Last edited by Teddscau; 05-24-2016 at 02:55 PM.
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Old 05-24-2016, 11:26 PM
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Robyn,

I'm glad you caught Robyn's obesity problem before it was too late!

I'm sure that now that you know, she will be able to live a healthier lifestyle
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Old 05-24-2016, 11:44 PM
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Having her in her own cage also has the added advantage of working on her tameness. Try and get her at least finger tame, and then you can do hand exercises with her! One such exercise is getting her to step up, then step up on your other hand, then again, and so on like the stair climber machine at the gym.
Another is placing a small amount of food at one end of a table for her to eat, then another small batch at the other end so she has to run back and forth each time she finishes her small batch.
What I've been doing with my two tubby budgies is only giving them their seed/millet mix in the morning and evening, but leaving fresh veggies in their cage all day for them to snack on. Things like cilantro, dill, grated carrot, etc that is healthy for them to eat. That way they feel satisfied throughout the day. Scatter her food about on a crumpled piece of paper so she has to work for it; if you think she's smart and/or curious enough make a paper pocket with a couple slits so she can see/smell the food in there but has to work to get it out.
Good luck! Can't wait to see the pictures
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