Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Category Archives: preen

A Rare bath

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:

Moriarty

 

Corn flour is essential

Just 8 days after seeing the vet for Lennie’s health problems, I was back at her clinic.

All initially seemed fine on the morning of the 2nd November.  Normally, I would let Perry in with Moriarty where they could get their morning flirt out of the way without interruption from Lennie.  This went ahead as usual but I noticed it ended quicker than usual, & Moriarty wanted to go & say good morning to Lennie.  This meant Perry was on his own in Moriarty’s cage.

Not long after, I noticed the tip of his beak was red.

Now was the time for some intense observation.

I thought I saw a flash of something dark around his preening gland area.  I wondered if he had a broken blood feather.  Sure enough it was not long before, I started seeing spots of blood on the bottom of the cage…  Then bigger drops.

More blood from Perry

I rang the vet hoping there was a cancellation for a home visit, which there was not.  She was already out doing home visits but would be back at the clinic in about an hour or so, so they suggested I make my way there.  I immediately covered Perry in corn flour.  He was bleeding as I was doing this (the place looked like a crime scene afterwards).  I could not quite work out where it was coming from so just pressed my finger in certain places & if it came out red, I shoved corn flour in that area.  There seemed to be a spot below the preening gland that was bleeding.  I put him in the travel cage.  Fortunately, the corn flour temporarily stopped the bleeding.  The cab ride would be at least 30 minutes, so I put some corn flour in my bag in case it was needed on route.  We got to the clinic about half an hour before the vet.  It was not until about 5 or 10 minutes before she took him in, that I saw a drop of blood on the bottom of his cage – so the corn flour held up well.

It seemed like forever that Perry was in with the vet.  The longer he was gone, the more worried I was getting.

It turned out the bleed was from a broken blood feather on the left side of the main tail.  The feather itself was not in situ & to date, still has not been found.  (It is possible there was not blood on it when it came out, so I may have missed it).

There was quite a big hole left by the feather & the area was inflamed & bruised.  By that time, the bleeding was heavy so the vet cauterized the feather follicles to stop it.  She also removed some of the surrounding feathers.  She gave Perry an anti-inflammatory injection & also made sure he was well hydrated.  The vet said several times that it was absolutely the right thing to bring him as soon as we did.

 

We finally got home early afternoon.  Perry started chirping to Lennie & Moriarty as I brought him into the lounge.  I left him in the travel cage for about an hour as he seemed comfortable there (knowing he was back home).  Moriarty was going mad, wanting to give him a kiss but I think he too calmed down a bit just seeing that Perry was home again.  Both Moriarty & Lennie were locked in Perry & Lennie’s cage.  Whilst Perry was resting I took the opportunity to clean up Moriarty’s cage.  When Perry started to stir a bit, I offered my finger & he came out, so I put him into Moriarty’s cage.  To try & get some normality back, I let Moriarty in at intervals so as not to tire Perry out.

Perry was quiet for the rest of the day but in the evening had some water & also tucked into some millet.  I checked on him during the night & he was stable.  The vet nurse rang first thing in the morning to see how he was.  Importantly, there was no further blood loss.  The anti-inflammatory was due to wear off 24-48 hours after administration, leaving the sore, bruised area which will take a little longer to heal.  So far, Perry has continued to recover well.

 

I would like to end this post by recommending that all who have birds should have a tub of corn flour in their medicine cabinet.  You never know when it might come in handy.  Without corn flour Perry may not have made it to the vet.  Lastly, I would also like to say a big thank you to my vet who immediately understood the gravity of the situation & responded as quick as she could & was a star!

Corn flour

 

Update on Perry’s health

In my last post on this subject (click here) I reported about Perry’s ‘turns’.  We have had further developments.

On the 4th July, Perry had, what I would describe as a ‘Twitchfest’.  He twitched, though not violently, off & on all day, but settled by bedtime.  I was on edge the whole time, anticipating that he would get worse.

Perry

Perry’s next, more significant, episode was on Saturday, the 22nd August.  At around 11am, he began twitching, & a couple of those were major enough to propel him off the perch.  At one point, he was hanging from the perch by one foot.  He seemed okay after about 15 minutes.  However, about two & a half hours later, the twitches began again, but this time they were throwing him off the perch, on average every 30 seconds (sometimes the frequency between was longer, sometimes shorter).  Lennie was sensible & went into Dalai’s cage, so I locked him in there for the duration.

For about an hour the twitches continued, at varying levels of intensity.  Each time his movement was from his left to the right, so I could predict where he would go/land.  Sometimes he would have a few minutes where he was just twitching & able to stay on the perch.  He pooped throughout, but a watery substance.  Through it all, he did not make a sound.  He was completely aware & scared as he clearly did not know what was happening to him.  The times he landed on the bottom of the cage he immediately made his way back up.  By 3pm they were subsiding & he was able to preen & behave a bit more normally, by which time, Lennie joined him again.

Things had settled down by the Monday, but nevertheless, I spoke to the vet, & she suggested adding calcium to their water as they were both still moulting.

New cage set up L to R: hospitalisation cage, ‘home’, Dalai’s cage

The next episode was Saturday the 12th September (I am starting to dread Saturdays!). He seemed extra quiet that morning & when I offered him a spinach leaf, he had to turn his head at a strange angle to eat it.  This alerted me & I decided to dust off the quarantine cage & prepare it for possible hospitalisation purposes.  Later that day, he spasmed, fell to the cage floor & was rolling around.  I carefully picked him up & put him in the spare cage.  He came out of the spasm & I placed him on a perch, where he was very still.  His balance was very off & he fell off the perch a few times but at least did not have far to fall in the newly set up cage, & the bottom has extra padding.  Occasionally, he would turn his head from side to side & his eyes were flickering.

Read more of this post

Perry Preening

Here are some pictures of Perry preening.  I may be biased but I think he is a very handsome boy.

 

Preening Perry’s head

Perry still likes to have his head preened & Dalai still likes to oblige.

 

 

 

Bezukhov’s misting

I have been remiss in giving mistings.  Fortunately both Dalai & Lennie are happy to have baths.  Perry will have a bath when there is a blue moon & equally Bezukhov will have a bath if he really, really needs one.  Neither Perry or Lennie have partook in earlier mistings which may have further reduced my motivation to give them.  However, a few days ago, I gathered together some celery leaves & the spray bottle & a misting was given.

As soon as Bezukhov saw the yellow spray bottle he knew what was coming & started to fluff himself up.  He definitely prefers mistings to baths & went straight to the celery leaves to roll about under the water that I was spraying.  He also went to the Thomas bath & had a dunk there as the spray from the water bottle was also going across that.  All in all, he had a good wash!  Dalai very briefly joined in.  Perry & Lennie looked on in bemusement from afar.

Here are photos of Bezukhov after his misting:

Here he is having a thorough preen:

I must resolve to do more mistings, even if only Bezukhov is interested!

 

Pins, poop & preening

Bezukhov is getting better.  He is eating a reasonable amount each day.  His poops are looking fine.  He is chatting again with Dalai & has even engaged in the odd flirting session here & there.  He is still moulting though, so looks a bit rough & still likes to have a sleep during the day.

Dalai is also moulting.

 

During the last week, I have noticed Dalai preen Bezukhov’s cheek feathers.  I have only witnessed it happen about 3 times & each time was very brief but I did manage to get one little session on film:

Despite the rather brusque ending, I think Bezukhov appreciated the attention.

 

After the last few weeks, it gives me great pleasure to see Bezukhov tucking into his seed:

 

Poops are looking good too:

 

 

Remembering Thomas: Two years on

So, it has been two whole years without Thomas.

I have been thinking of him a lot recently.

Phinny’s new need for me to ruffle his cheek feathers makes me think of Thomas.  Thomas often used to fluff up his cheek feathers & tilt his head slightly & that was his cue for someone (anyone – I do not think he was fussy) to preen them.  His subtle signals were ignored initially until one day, when the Toyboys were holidaying in my bedroom, Phineas temporarily put aside thoughts of his own needs & preened Thomas.  It was a momentous occasion, not just because Thomas finally got what he wanted but because in getting that, he showed that Phineas was capable of putting someone else’s needs before him – an amazing achievement for such a young lad!

 

The Thomas Bath was named in honour of him.  He would throw himself in there with abandon & once again, without realising, taught the others of the joy of having a bath.  When I see Phineas & Bezukhov bathing in the Thomas Bath I think, “Thank you, Thomas – what a guy!”

 

Thank you for those lovely times, young Thomas.

rememberingthomas

 

A helping beak

One of the medication’s (Lactulose) I have to give orally to Bezukhov is like a syrup.  Unfortunately, the combination of my lack of expertise in administering medication by syringe/dropper & Bezukhov’s propensity for wriggling, has resulted in the sticky syrup landing on his feathers & not in his beak.

Ignoring Bezukhov’s desperate desire to leave my grip, I usually try to wipe as much medication away from his cheek & chin feathers before letting him go.  The medicine is very sticky though & remains on his feathers.

What he really needs is a best buddy who can preen the goo away…

 

 

A Preening Cagney

I was going to reserve these photos for the Weird poses & funny faces post but felt they needed their very own post.  Here is Cagney preening & getting into some interesting positions:

20140313_131248_sh21

20140313_131239_sh21

20140313_131301_sh21

–