Remember this date, 2nd June 2022. Why? Moriarty had a bath! It has been so long that I cannot remember when his last bath was.
I offered Perry some water. Usually I offer the bath water (clean, not water that Lennie has bathed in!) but if I am giving him supplements I put the water in a small, transparent water pot, which was the case this time. Moriarty seemed keen to have a bath in it but I did not want him to bathe in supplements, plus it was only big enough to fit his belly in. So, I quickly got the bath. I have done this before when he has shown interest in bathing in the water pot but he has declined the proper bath, but this time, he jumped straight in.
It was surprising as the Thomas Bath had been on the cage door all morning & Moriarty had passed it many times. Still, who knows how a budgie mind works. What was important was that he finally had a bath! What a fun one it was! Lots of fluffing up, splashing & going around in circles!
Sorry – no photos as I was holding the bath, but here are some aftermath photos when he went back to his original cage to have a preen:
It appears that Moriarty, similar to Perry, is a ‘blue moon bather‘. He is happy to have a bath but only now & then, when the moon is blue.
He has no problem with dancing around the edge of the bath & perhaps even putting a toenail in but it is rare for him to actually dunk himself in. I dusted off the spray bottle thinking that he may prefer a shower but he seemed to think it was some alien being. Neither Perry or Lennie like spray baths – they had the option when I used to give them to Bezukhov & Dalai, but were not interested.
Lennie likes bathing often, so Moriarty does have a role model. Here is a slideshow showing photos of him skirting around The Thomas Bath:
On Friday 20th August, I noticed Lennie was not eating the evening millet. Normally they have red millet but I was unable to buy any online so got some nice, fresh-looking ‘normal’ millet from a local pet shop. I wondered if Lennie just did not like the change in colour, however when I offered a bobble of red millet (leftover bits in the bag) he refused it. I thought that as he was moulting he was probably just ‘under the weather’.
As the weekend progressed, his poops turned a deep green, with a bluish tinge. This can indicate lack of food. I was offering all sorts of food but he just was not eating anything, in fact he was physically moving away. Either that, or he was so sleepy he did not even notice me waving a basil leaf, piece of celery or broccoli in front of him. Occasionally he would go to the seed pot & rummage around but he was not eating, he would just pick up a seed & drop it. I got an appointment with the vet on the Monday afternoon (23rd).
This was a trip to the clinic, so Lennie had to endure the travel cage & a taxi ride which fortunately was pretty quick at around 30 mins, but we had to allow extra time in case of traffic. (It would have been an arduous trip on public transport via three buses).
When we arrived, I said to the vet, who knows us well (!), “I think he has a touch of the Bezukhov’s“, in reference to dear Bezukhov’s Extreme Moult Experience when he was moulting & also not eating. The vet took Lennie into the consulting room for examination (I was not allowed in). His weight was 53g, which, on the face of it, is actually not too terrible, but it was an astonishing 20g weight loss from his last weigh-in. He has a fatty lump covering his front but the vet could feel his keel bone behind it & could tell he had lost considerable weight. His temperature was normal & his heart sounded fine. Continue reading “A touch of the “Bezukhov’s”?”→
When Moriarty arrived here, I was told he liked the yellow bath, so during quarantine days, I would hook it up. However, he never went in there when it had water in. He would just stand on the edge & take a drink!
I was not too concerned as I thought that once he is with the others he will be able to use the Thomas Bath. Time went by, with various bath opportunities that were not taken up on, until the 5th February. That day, I hooked up the yellow bath, with water in it, & he went in! Later on, that same day, he even had a dunk in the Thomas Bath! Unfortunately, none of this was recorded, but here are some pictures from a subsequent bath.
Part of our morning routine is that I offer Perry the bath with plain water to drink, first thing. Subsequent offerings are usually supplemented water. The first offering is plain water as sometimes Lennie is tempted to have a bath in it & I would rather he did not bathe in expensive vitamin water!
The morning of Tuesday 15th December, Lennie decided it was bath time (fine – as it was plain water!) & unusually, Perry was also inspired to have a bath too. They both had very thorough baths. However, Perry’s bath meant that the area around his lump was wet & exposed & revealed a black lump. To say I was horrified would be an understatement!
A part of me thought that Perry must be okay as otherwise he would not have had the energy to have a bath. But a black lump? There was no way I could put a positive spin on that.
Perry was a bit quiet after his bath but it was a very vigorous one so it made sense he had worn himself out a bit. He perked up a bit later & ate & drank. By then, I had already booked a visit to the vet for that evening. Our usual mobile vet was not available so we actually had to visit the local vet ourselves, resulting in Perry having a short stay in the travel cage.
Though the local vet is only a few streets away, this particular evening the main road was unexpectedly closed which meant the traffic was diverted into the side streets that would normally have been quiet (& my preferred route). Perry’s travel cage was well padded & I threw an extra fleece over it for added warmth & protection. I walked as quickly as possible but the noise of traffic, from beeping horns & revving engines was very unpleasant & I feared for Perry’s stress levels.
On arrival at the vet’s practice, I quickly peeked inside to check he was okay (I had heard him fall off the perch) & he was clinging to the side. On unveiling him to the vet, I quickly noticed that part of his lump was on the cage floor!
It turned out that 0.7cm of his lump had developed into dead tissue & his moving around the travel cage had dislodged it. It was a clean break. The vet examined Perry & said the remaining 2cm of lump looked stable. It looked round & not misshapen (apparently a good thing). She thought he looked in otherwise good condition, with bright eyes & good quality feathers. He is overweight at around 60g, part of that will be the remaining lump & obviously a result of less exercise due to reducing mobility. No treatment necessary.
It was such a relief to get him home. Lennie was also happy to have his mate back.
For the record, I did take a photo of the piece of lump that fell off but not until a couple of days later when it had shrivelled somewhat & looked like a raisin… I will spare you all that vision.
Perry usually has a bath once in a blue moon. I posted not so long ago that, along with Lennie, he tried out the ‘indoor bath‘, so I was surprised that he had another bath so soon after. I could only assume there was another blue moon.
Here they are, once again having a dunk in their ‘en-suite’ bath:
Perry & Lennie have been choosing to stay in their cage. This may be because they have been moulting (again!) which can make them a little lethargic. Or it could be because they both have problems flying. But I think the main reason is that their primary purpose for coming out was to see Dalai & now I imagine they ask themselves, why bother if he is not around?
I have been lenient on this front as I miss Dalai too.
However, with their moulting and constant preening, I felt they were missing out on having a bath. The Thomas Bath is situated on the far side of Dalai’s cage. Whilst they might occasionally pop into Dalai’s cage to avoid the cleaner (me) for a few minutes, they are nowhere near venturing on top of the cage. Anyway, I thought I would bring the bath to them & perhaps hold it up near their door.
When I showed them the bath, Lennie looked particularly excited. He was normally the one having lots of baths, whereas Perry was happy with one in a blue moon. Because of Lennie’s look of interest, I decided to rig the bath up on their main door so that when it closed the bath would be between two perches. This done, I was pleased to see they were not startled to see an indoor bath but, in fact, were rather pleased.
I took the videos below. Unfortunately the cage bars are in the way, but you can get an idea of how it unfolded. Surprisingly, Perry was the first to jump in so I guess his blue moon was long overdue.