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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 12-29-2016, 09:21 PM
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Default AGY questions: need advice!

So I've read through the literature on AGY that you have on the site here but still need a little guidance here.

So, we have our bird Tiki, who is 2 years old and recently added Tundra almost a month ago who is 5 months old now.

Tundra has been checked out by a vet, had gram stain etc and was healthy at his checkup early in the month.

Recently with the introduction to veggies Tundra's feces had been a bit watery so we stopped them temporarily and have bought both apple cider vinegar (mother/ raw kind) and probiotics to help him stomach process veggies better.

But after stopping veggies for a few days one day I woke up I noticed diarrhea at the bottom of the cage. At the time we weren't sure if he ate some paper and perhaps his had caused this.

Just to be on the safe side, and to get him weighed more properly than I can do at home with him, I took him to the vet today. When our conure kept getting diarrhea with veggies it was bacteria overgrowth and we treated him with probiotics and it cleared up.

The vet checked him and said he looks super healthy. They looked at his poo under the microscope and said it was normal but saw a little bit of "fiber" in it that may be from his dried veggies he's eating in his Dr. Harvey's seed or from his fiberous toy he's shredding. But, there there is a very small chance it could be AGY, but given there was no secondary bacteria that is usually present and he looks healthy the vet said not to worry (she is a trained exotic animal vet).

The only thing that worried me was that Tundra has lost 2 grams as well which the vet said wasn't worrisome as of yet as perhaps with the new shift in food he ate less in the beginning. If under 28 she said we need to worry.

A few years back, from the same parrot shop where I bought Tundra (that comes highly rated though) I bought a cockatiel. That cockatiel was a 4 months old, and despite eating, kept losing weight and eventually, starved to death after a month. When the vet today was telling me the symptoms of AGY it was EXACTLY like our cockatiel. I am positive this is what it had. And now I'm nervous.

I have heard that the PCR test to know definitively is the only 100% test. Anyone done this? Or should I do 5 day dropping collection instead? The vet did not seem worried at all because Tundra was so healthy looking , and if I hadn't owned that cockatiel and purchased her from the same shop as Tundra I wouldn't be worried either but I would like definitive proof perhaps before introducing him to Tiki.

But at the same time, I've heard that birds can live happily with AGY so long as their immune system and gut flora keep it in check. Much like c difficil in humans - a gut pathogen that when good bacteria are wiped out, can take over and kill you.

So what to do?? I feel lost here. Do I get the bird definitely tested to know? Or does it not matter anyway if the rest of his immune system is strong?

And if I want to breed him down the line and he did have this could it kill off the babies? Or could they survive with proper immune system support?

Thanks guys


Last edited by midoritori; 12-29-2016 at 09:32 PM.
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Old 12-30-2016, 11:42 AM
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Let's take things one step at a time.

You don't know for sure whether or not Tundra has AGY.
Sometimes budgies have runny poop for a day or so (just like people) and then things return to normal.

So -- the first thing I would do is start both budgies on a regimen of Sodium Benzoate for 30 days.
It is a great preventative and I use it 2 or three times a year for all of my birds.

You can find the necessary information about it in this thread:

https://talkbudgies.com/articles-budg...ric-yeast.html

I mix 1/8 teaspoon in 8-10 oz of fresh water each time the water is changed. I follow the plan for 30 days and then stop.

Once you have your budgies both in good health, only then should we discuss the possibility of breeding in the future.
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Old 12-30-2016, 09:37 PM
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Do you have a gram scale, if not I would suggest you purchase one and weigh your bird daily and if you continue to see weight loss the vet needs to do further testing. I have a bird that is currently under treatment for AGY although the tests have never showed positive results. He was in the hospital for 8 days and is home now doing well and will be on meds for another 2 weeks.
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Old 12-31-2016, 12:51 AM
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I have a little gram scale I bought this past week.

I've heard raw apple cider vinegar may also be affective. Do you agree? My vet had me start Tundra on 2 weeks on apple cider vinegar.

I've read even more literature on AGY and it seems much like c. difficile in humans (albeit c. Difficile is a bacteria). When people take antibiotics and destroy good (and bad) bacteria in the gut one of the last bacteria standing is c. Difficile and it can kill you. It's always there, always present in our guts, but can only kill you when the gut is imbalanced.

In much of the literature it says most budgies probably have it in the wild. So I'm thinking even if Tundra has it mildly (which the vet was very sure he did not), rebalancing his guy and creating more balanced variety of flora in his gut will help to keep it in check. Some studies even cited a low level can help them build up resistance if immune system is strong.

So I think my plan will be apple cider, probiotics (or sodium benzoate somewhere in the rotation as well), good diet. Weighing him with the scale every day, and having him checked again in a few weeks to be on the safe side. I'm hoping this is a good plan of action.


As far as the breeding goes, it's a far in the future goal. I plan to not even consider it unless my birds are very healthy and I'm as knowledgeable as i can be.

Last edited by midoritori; 12-31-2016 at 01:04 AM.
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Old 12-31-2016, 06:23 AM
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While ACV is a good natural probiotic and something I believe in using on a regular basis, I do not believe it has the same affect on AGY as the Sodium Benzoate.

But, that is just my person opinion and I can't give you scientific evidence to back that up other than my own experience.
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