Questions & Answers

My birds are not hand-tamed and desperately need their nails trimmed. Help!

Q: I have two budgies who are 2-1/2 yrs old. My Budgies nails have not been trimmed in quite some time.  My budgie (Tiki) has developed dry crusty feet, and one of his back toes is swollen into a small ball that is very red. Could this be infection? He gets around fine on that food but he has begun to pick at it. My birds are not hand-tamed and do not like to be held. Help!

A: Thank you for allowing us to help with Tiki’s care.  Foot problems are fairly common in budgies and can range from mite infections (known as Scaly Face/Scaly Leg mites), to bacterial infections, trauma (catching a long nail and twisting it abnormally), or even a sign of systemic conditions such as kidney disease or vitamin deficiencies.  Birds can also suffer from threads wrapped around a toe causing constriction and swelling.

The key to success in treating our avian patients is early disease diagnosis and treatment before the condition worsens.  Although a physical exam can be stressful to rarely-handled birds, our excellent veterinarians have lots of experience with small birds and we can help to diagnose and treat Tiki to get him feeling better as soon as possible.  Please contact us to make an appointment to have Tiki examined today.  It would be a good idea to check out Tiki’s cagemate at the same time to pick up any early signs of problems in her as well.

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