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    Increasing the Appetite of a Sick Bird

    ArticleThursday 09 December 2010
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    A sick bird can hide its symptoms as a defence mechanism, and so it can be tricky to tell when your pet bird is not feeling well. However, there are certain indicators that owners can look out for id they think they have an ill bird. Certain give-aways such as ruffled feathers, excessive tiredness and loss of appetite can show that you have a sick bird. When a bird refuses to eat this is not a good sign. Their metabolisms are mush faster than ours and so it is vital that they eat regularly. When a bird has not eaten for up to 48 hours, you should consider this a medical emergency and go to the vet straight away. The following is a guide to encouraging your bird to start eating again. %%AFC-ADVERT%%

    •    A sick bird may begin to overeat grit in the cage. Remove all the grit so that the bird does not eat too much to cause harm. Then move the cage to a warm area of your home. You could also put a heat lamp nearby (not too hot though). Ensure plenty of water availability in the cage. When a bird stops eating, its body tissue is metabolised. The extra heat means that energy is saved in the bird to try and keep warm so it slows down this process.

    •    Keep the bird feeling safe by making sure the atmosphere is as quiet as possible and that all his favourite toys are with him.

    •    Eat next to the ill bird. A sick bird could see this as flock behaviour and may be encouraged to eat if it sees you doing so. Keep offering treats like fruit. Fruit can help an ill bird quickly to want to eat more.

    •    If your pet bird hasn’t eaten for up to 48 hours you should be concerned and call the vet ASAP. Where possible, give the bird food with an eyedropper. Fill it with fruit juice and force it into the bird’s beak while you tilt him back.

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