Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Tag Archives: misting

Pins & dill

The toyboys are moulting again.  Bezukhov is looking particularly tatty.  He has lots of pins on his head & some scattered about his body.

I gave them a dill misting.  Cagney had a little rummage in the greenery but, as expected, Bezukhov was the one who really went to town getting wet.  He was throwing himself across the dill & falling over in it, having a brief rest then going back for more.

(Click on pictures to enlarge)

The Leader’s last 24 hours

Atilla had gradually been getting weaker.  The last couple of days she ate less & less & slept more & more.  Cagney would often sit by her.  He would wait for a sign from her for regurgitated seed.  He never let her down.

On that last day, I gave the toyboys a basil misting.  Cagney really went to town & tunneled through the basil getting very wet.  Bezukhov did not seem to be in the mood for a misting so shouted at Cagney from the sidelines.  Atilla just stayed where she was.  She did not have the energy to join in.  I offered her some wet basil leaves & she licked them a little, but then went back to sleep.

Towards the end, I noticed she started getting a bit unsteady when going from perch to perch, so much so that at one point she lost her balance & was half off the perch, with one foot clinging to the side.  That was my cue.  I scooped her up in my hands & held her to my chest.

She was so still but I could feel her heart beating.  I told her we loved her.  I told her she was beautiful.  I thanked her for all she had given us.  The boys were looking on intently.  Cagney looked like he wanted to be with her, so I lifted her up to him on the landing platform.  He gently tapped her beak & preened her head but she could not open her eyes.  Her head was resting on my fingers.  Then suddenly she got some energy from somewhere & started flapping her wings but that was her last movement, as her little heart stopped & she was gone….

There was relief that she was free from illness & (hopefully) able to fly the way she used to, I like to think, with her little sister Raspy.  But there is also great sadness that she is no longer here with us.

When she passed, I sat on her beloved poang chair, just holding her.  In that hour that I sat there, Cagney flew over countless times & landed on my hand or arm & would gently touch Atilla or just look at her.  Perhaps, like me, he could not quite believe that she had gone…

Flapping about & getting wet

During the recent hot weather I gave Atilla & the toyboys a few mistings to cool them down.  Atilla will only turn down a misting if the water temperature is not quite to her liking.  The boys are more unpredictable.  Sometimes they join in & have a roll about in whatever leaves there are but other times they will get a single drop of water on them & start preening excessively like they have actually got wet.

I love to watch Atilla flapping about under the water & prancing about in the leaves.  It is difficult to film as I am spraying the water with one hand & have the camera in the other hand.  It is worth the effort though.  Here is Atilla having a flap & getting thoroughly drenched….

Afterwards:

(Click on pictures to enlarge)

Poop mountain, reinforcements & misting

Even though Mr Exotic Vet had cleared poop away from Atilla’s lump, it started building up.  I can only assume this was happening because the poop was either too runny, and/or she was too weak to do her squat & wriggle to propel the poop away from her vent & the lump.  I tried a couple of times to catch her to clean the poop but found it impossible to keep her still in my hand – she could wriggle & squirm for England.  That in itself was quite reassuring in that she was not so ill that she could not resist.

Spinach leaves

In the hope of loosening the poop mountain, I gave Atilla & the toyboys a misting.  As far as leaves, they only had spinach, so I picked out a few large leaves & hoped they would be tempted to get wet.  Atilla came out onto the landing platform quite quickly to investigate but I can only assume the water temperature was not quite to her liking as she turned her back & retired to her perch.  The boys had a little play in the wet spinach but I guess followed their leader & were not able to drum up much enthusiasm.

So, there was no luck with soaking Atilla’s poop, however the poop had to be cleared as it would not be long before it would be mounting up & blocking the vent area.  I decided to call in reinforcements for the next day.

Surprisingly Atilla was quite alert the next morning.  So much so that when I opened up the Manor she clearly wanted to fly & stretch her wings.  She promptly landed on the floor, but when I returned her to the Manor she flew off again, got further around the room but landed on the floor again.  No matter… I felt this was a good sign as she clearly wanted to be active.

Unfortunately, her activity did not shift the ever-growing poop mountain on her lump.

Not long after Atilla’s little fly, the poop-clearing troops arrived (my mum).  After much discussion, we decided the poop should be soaked for at least a minute & the best way to do this would be to put Atilla in a bird bath.  I would be the one to catch/hold her & mum would be armed with cotton buds & cotton wool for shifting the poop.

As a precursor I gave them all another spinach misting (in the hope that Atilla could soak her lump herself!)  Atilla did not have the energy to roll in the spinach but did get a little wet.  Cagney had a crawl through the spinach leaves & got a nice wet belly & Bezukhov had a romp & a dance over the leaves & I think he forgot that he was actually meant to wash himself!

The aftermath

So, after that distraction, it actually took us two attempts to get rid of all the poop.  Both times, I managed to put Atilla into the bird bath with warm water & keep her in by placing my hand over the open doorway (where the bath should hook onto the cage bars).  Atilla attempted to bite a hole through my fingers to escape but the skin on my fingers are like leather now (thanks Atilla & Raspy) so I could withstand the biting.

The soaking definitely helped in removing the poop.  On the second try I managed to wrap Atilla in a tea-towel which made it a lot easier to hold her still for longer.  Once the poop was gone, before releasing Atilla, mum smeared some vaseline on her lump.  I had already mixed in some aloe vera gel from a plant into the vaseline.  I hoped this would protect the skin on her lump as it is difficult to pull off poop that has hardened.

The poop mountain

What a relief.  The deed was done.  Atilla tweeted as she ran back to her perch & I think she appreciated being rid of the poop though did not appreciate the dunking in the bird bath or the general indignity of the process.  I turned the electric blanket on so she could stay warm as her back end was still wet from the bath.

After she recovered she was able to preen her bottom/vent area & tidy it up a bit.

Bathing!

For some time now, I have wanted to get Atilla, Cagney & Bezukhov bathing on film.  

They have not got into baths, so their preferred form of bathing is being sprayed with water whilst they can romp about in some green leaves.  It is a bit awkward holding the misting bottle, keeping up the spraying & also filming at the same time however, I finally managed to get some good footage. 🙂

First up was Atilla.  Here she is, quite frankly, going a bit mental.  Woe betide anyone in Atilla’s way when it is misting time!  

Next up was Bezukhov.  He had a few goes.  His style is less frantic than Atilla’s.  He is more contained but there is a lot of wobbling, shaking & tipping over.

Cagney had been quite keen with mistings recently, but this time he took his time getting into it.  Nevertheless, I managed to get a few seconds of him on his belly, with his wings out, virtually crawling through the celery.  Yet again, another style of bathing.

Then Bezukhov wanted another jiggle in the celery. 🙂

Soggy Cagney

Because of Atilla’s & the Toyboys’ recent moult, I made sure I gave them mistings & this was usually with dill or celery leaves.  Atilla was worst hit by the moult & only refused a misting once & that was without even testing the water temperature (she would normally refuse if the water was a degree or two too cold).

The toyboys have been enjoying the mistings recently, especially Cagney.  He rubs his belly along the leaves & spreads his wings out & makes sure he gets thoroughly wet.  Bezukhov likes to dance in the wet leaves but then he has always liked the feel of food under his feet.

Finally, a proper wash!

Their dill misting was long overdue.  So much so, that they all got a little excited when I brought the spray bottle out.  As usual, Atilla was the first to have a good roll in the dill.  When she squelched to the Manor rooftop to dry off, the toyboys both attempted to emulate her bathing actions. 

Cagney did really, really well!  The best ever!  He was the wettest I have ever seen him.  He was flat out on the dill, crawling along on his belly, head buried in the dill, really getting himself thoroughly wet.  I was very proud of him!

Here he is having a good preen afterwards: 

One potato, two potato…

three potato, four…

If you know the rhyme it will give you some idea of Raspy’s tactic to get out of Mr Vet’s grasp! 

Yes, there has been yet another visit from Mr Vet.  This time, his usual Lovely Assistant was not available, so he brought Lovely Assistant Numero Two (LAN2).

My main concerns this time were that:

  1. Atilla’s fatty lump appeared to have spawned another lump further down in her “undercarriage” area, &
  2. Raspy now weighs the same as her sister (she has always been less).

Atilla & Raspy bonding

In preparation for the visit, I locked the toyboys in the Ferplast when they had both gone in to nibble at the iodine block, even though there is a block in the Manor.   This left the puddings alone in the Manor.  I noticed that Raspy immediately went to Atilla’s perch to sit near her.  She was bashing Atilla’s mirror but I suspect that was her way of being affectionate without losing face (see video below).

I gave them some dill soaked in camomile tea in the hope it would help to keep them calm.  They were happy chomping away together.  They were happy until Mr Vet & LAN2 arrived….

Cagney & Atilla after their misting

Normally, if I put my hand in the cage, both girls are happy to jump on, if only to bite me, chew my sleeve or cadge a lift to another perch.  With Mr Vet there, they did not even entertain the idea of sitting on my finger.  I even showed them their favourite toy, the camera, to tempt them but no, they were not going to be fooled.  Unfortunately, that meant Mr Vet went in with his cloth…..

Raspy came out first & was flying all around the room.  We left her, to focus on Atilla, who also bombed out the Manor.  She landed on the floor & LAN2 quickly bundled her up.

Atilla was vocal about the indignity of being held.  Mr Vet had a listen to her heart & breathing & gave her a prod & a poke.

His verdict on the lump situation is that the bottom lump is actually part of the initial chest lump that has slipped down as it is not attached to anything.  He reckoned she was in better overall condition than last time.  Her heart was strong & her breathing fine.

Though I am still concerned about her lump, I am well aware that he could have said a whole lot worse so I feel some relief.

Raspy preening Bezukhov

Raspy was next.  She managed to fly behind the curtain where Mr Vet gathered her up in his cloth.  Raspy was about 10 times more vocal than Atilla.  I think Mr Vet & LAN2 were a bit surprised at the ferocity of her protest.  Raspy proceeded to squirm & that is when Mr Vet started the one potato, two potato actions with his hands, as he tried to keep hold of her!  She had her toenails trimmed but kept holding onto the clipper with the foot that was free.  Mr Vet gave her a prod & poke also.

He said he could not feel any lumps.  Like Atilla, her heartbeat & breathing were good.

So, job done & Mr Vet & LAN2 departed, leaving the puddings to recover in the Manor.  When I saw they were both preening, I thought about letting the toyboys back out.

I do not exaggerate when I say that within less than a minute of being let out, Cagney had his leg over Atilla!  He loves that girl!  Bezukhov was covering Raspy with kisses also.  They had only been apart for 2 hours at most.

When they had got their “greetings” over with, I got out the rest of the camomile-tea-soaked dill & gave them a misting.  All had a romp in the dill, apart from Raspy who watched, but she did give Bezuky’s head a good preen afterwards (see video below).

Raspy & Atilla alone in the Manor:


Raspy preening Bezuky (Atilla was “helping” me film, hence camera shake): 

Dill misting

Puddings & Toyboys had a dill misting this weekend.  The boys were not so enthusiastic & waited for me to stop spraying the water before tucking into the dill.  Atilla opted out of the last misting I gave them, so I was pleased she was back on form & had a thorough wash & completely wore herself out!

This is left intentionally blank.

Trying his luck

Here is a video of Atilla & Cagney, taken after a misting session with celery leaves.  You can see that Atilla made the most of the water but Cagney still looks pretty dry.  He is not put off by Atilla’s dishevelled, wet appearance & still tries his luck…. several times…