It is with great sadness that I report my beautiful boy Lennie has left us.
We had returned from a vet visit. Shortly after, he rapidly took a turn for the worse. He died in my hands. In his last moments, I was able to tell him how much we loved him… That I loved every second of every day that he spent with us… What a wonderful companion he was… I thanked him for everything, for just being Lennie.
My only consolation is that he only spent 19 days without his beloved friend Perry.
His loss is great.
The loss of both Lennie & Perry in such a short time is hard to bear.
Well, this will be quite a long post! Despite Perry’s chilled personality, he managed to collect quite a few health issues over the years.
The first significant problem was encountered in March 2019, when the vet noticed a lump during an examination, prompted by some weird head shaking that went away quickly of its own accord. (Click here for that post).
Later that year, in October, Perry exhibited some mobility problems. On examination the vet noticed some bruising on his upper leg. His lump was still there, but growing outwards. (Click here for that post).
The first seizure witnessed was in May 2020 (Click here for that post). I had hoped it was a one-off but they returned the following month, which is when the vet was consulted (Click here for that post). The seizures carried on & the vet did various tests, with one of them indicating that he was borderline Diabetes – perhaps the reason why his water intake had increased. (Click here for that post).
Perry remained relatively stable until a one-off drama in November 2021 with a broken blood feather & lots of blood! (Click here for that post). Beak trims for Perry began during 2021, which suggested a liver problem (also a possible cause of the seizures).
Unfortunately, the frequency of Perry’s seizures increased over the summer of 2022. By October, I had decided to give him anti-seizure medication. There are potential side-effects to this, so I had to weigh up the pros & cons. Around this time, the vet also suspected Perry had heart failure. (Click here for that post).
We continued giving him medication twice a day. The morning slot was usually around 10-11am. The evening slot was more fluid & largely dictated by whenever the opportunity presented itself. In his last week Perry was having it around 7-8pm.
Perry continued to eat well, but never did return to eating from the seed pots. During the daytime when he was mostly in Moriarty’s cage, I would offer either millet spray, or seed in the little red pot. He continued to eat various vegetables & apple, when offered. He would nap during the day, sometimes quite heavily, usually sitting on the branch perch on the far left hand side. When he woke up, he would jump to the big horizontal perch, at which point Moriarty would appear to give him kisses. It was usually the time I offered food & also water.
When Perry retired back to his & Lennie’s cage in the evening, he would initially snooze on the branch perch, & Lennie would often take the opportunity to gently preen him. After a snooze, he would make his way to the triangle perch, where he would eat from the pegged up millet. Perry was always a late eater, known in the past for snacking from the seed pot at midnight. He continued with his late eating, often chomping away at the millet until 11pm. I would leave a part of the cover up so I could spy his movements – if he moved to the left hand side of the triangle perch, that usually indicated he wanted some water, which I then offered.
Mostly, Perry would roost on the far right hand side of the big horizontal perch, that had multiple layers of vet-wrap to soften it for his feet.
Perry was good at conserving energy. In the mornings, the routine was to get Moriarty out first & whilst he was greeting Perry & Lennie through the bars of their cage, I would give his cage a quick clean. The last task was to take his seed pot into the kitchen to ‘dustbust’ the breakfast seed husks away. When I returned it, that was when Perry usually started to stir as he knew I would open their cage up next. He knew there was no point jumping about until I had done that seed pot!
Previously, I would open the little door & he would make his way into Moriarty’s but in later months, with mobility being hampered, he would step up & I would transport him myself into Moriarty’s. I would lock them both in for a morning flirt & bonding session, whilst I sorted out Lennie’s cage, at the same time, thanking Lennie for looking after Perry overnight & telling him he did a good job.
Then it was time for Perry’s morning medication. He was very much inspired by Moriarty also eating the vegetable that I hid the medicine on, so there was much chicanery going on with getting Perry to eat the ‘loaded’ piece of vegetable & making sure Moriarty did not. A similar feat went on in the evening, with Lennie inspiring Perry to eat the food.
Certainly I could not have looked after Perry as well in his later months without Lennie & Moriarty’s assistance.
On Perry’s last night, I checked on him, via the baby monitor, before turning my bedroom light off at 2am. I saw him, with his back to the camera, on the mid-height rope perch which suggested he had either had a seizure & had recovered (hence being on the perch) or had clumsily fallen. I watched for a few minutes, then saw him give himself a shake then make his way up to the top perch (under the cover). All seemed to be okay at that point. I woke at around 4am & checked the monitor again. This time, Lennie appeared to be on the mid-height perch (seemed odd) but after about 15 minutes, he too made his way back up. Once again, I thought all was okay & went to sleep. I found Perry the next morning, laying peacefully on the floor.
On reflection, I wonder if something had happened to Perry at 4am (hence Lennie being on the lower perch) but he was not visible due to his position being obscured by the double thickness of the cage door frame & door itself. Or maybe not. Either way, there did not appear to be any major disturbance aside from a fall. A seizure episode would have likely knocked all seed/feathers from the cage floor, but there was no evidence of this. I choose to believe his end was peaceful & calm.
I will leave you with the last video I took of Perry, six days before he left us:
It is with great sadness that I report the passing of our very, dear friend, Perry.
He died in the early hours of this morning. I found him laying peacefully at the bottom of the cage. All was well the previous evening.
Our hearts are broken. Perry was as near perfect as you can get. He got on with everyone. Everyone loved him. He was easy-going. There was no drama with Perry (even during times of crisis, he still remained low-key). He had no complaints & demanded nothing, even through all his health issues. Perry was open-hearted & free with his love & friendship, with no ill-will towards anyone.
It was an honour to know him.
He will be missed. He is already missed.
I will end with a quote attributed to Charles Dickens, “The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again.” So, until we meet again dear Perry… ♥
***Warning: Some gory photos are included in this post.***
As described in my previous post, Perry has an abscess. When part of it burst, I contemplated a vet visit, though suspected we would have a continuation of the ‘wait & see’ approach. Unfortunately, during February, Perry’s seizures increased, which is what made me decide to book the vet visit on the 14th of February.
Perry has been on anti-seizure medication (Epiphen) since October. His seizures stopped. Initially, he continued to have ‘pre-seizure’ symptoms like head-twisting/tilting, head tremors & unfocused eyes, but even those stopped after awhile. He has continued to have some mobility problems but is much improved.
After a couple of days of being unable to get Perry to take his medication, he had a seizure two nights running (11th/12th December). This indicated to me that the medication was definitely working & it was not coincidence. He then had another seizure on the 24th December, then nothing until February. Between the 1st and today (date of posting 17th February) he has had 9 seizures. On two of those occasions he had 3 seizures during one evening – cluster events. Worrying. This is despite him still taking the medication.
The vet thinks an increase in medication would help, but appreciates the difficulty in administering small doses, i.e., how can a small amount be reliably increased by an even smaller amount?!
The vet examined Perry’s abscess. She tried to wiggle a section off, but it was not quite ready to fall, so that is expected to fall in days. The rest of it should also come away at a later date. No action to be taken – just let it heal naturally, hopefully without any major incident. The lump on Perry’s belly that the abscess is on, is bigger, which also made the vet wonder if it may be pressing on nerves that are triggering the extra seizures. Given we expect the lump/abscess to reduce, we decided to wait a few weeks for it to fall away & see if that has any impact on the frequency of Perry’s seizures. If so, then we carry on with the anti-seizure medication as normal. If not, then we will consider increasing the medication.
***Warning: Some gory photos are included in this post.***
Two years after the drama of Perry’s abscess, he has developed another one. There was speculation on the last vet visit (6th December) that a newly balding lump on his belly could develop into an abscess, so it was not entirely a surprise.
It was on the morning of the 28th of December that I noticed some blackening on his belly lump. It looked suspiciously like the previous abscess. I sent some photos to the vet & she agreed it could be the same thing developing. The only options at that point were:
Do nothing & wait for it to burst,
Soften the black ‘scab’ area with warm water & try & squeeze it gently to see if anything comes out or
Surgical intervention under anaesthetic.
I opted for the first one. A week later on the 4th January, I sent more photos to the vet & she thought it looked less inflamed & ‘nice & clean’. Not that this suggested we were out of the woods. Over the days & weeks it has gradually changed. The area is quite large, & seems to be developing at different rates. Part of it is under his feathers, so more difficult to monitor.
For sometime now, the Thomas Bath has been set up on the outside of the main door of Moriarty’s (previously Dalai’s) cage.
Because of Perry’s recent wobbliness & the need to avoid open dishes of water in case he fell in, I had been putting the bath out less & less. Add to that, Lennie rarely, if ever, comes out & he is our main bath user. The bath location seemed redundant.
Lennie has always liked a bath, so I was holding it up to him in his cage so he could continue having his baths. With this in mind, I decided to relocate the bath to the inside of the main door of Perry & Lennie’s cage. That way, when Perry is spending the daytime in Moriarty’s cage, I can set up the bath for Lennie, close the door so it is lined up neatly with his perches & he can bathe at his leisure.
Lennie checking out the bath
Lennie having a bath
Lennie having a bath whilst Moriarty watches
Moriarty & Lennie conversing over the bath
Lennie comes out to check the bath whilst Moriarty watches
This system has been working well. Lennie can have his bath (he has been known to shout when he wants me to put it in!) I do not need to stand there holding it. Perry is safe from the open water. Moriarty is free to take a bath on the rare occasion that he is in the mood!