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  1. #1
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Unhappy Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Hi All,

    Thank you to everyone who's followed my other threads. As you probably are aware, I didn't manage to save my first rescued Budgie, simply because I had no idea how serious the problem was and I didn't take her to an avian vet soon enough.

    This morning my heart almost stopped when I just noticed that Lucky's tail is bobbing when he's at rest! He has been very quiet, and although he's picked up a little the last couple of hours, I am fully aware that this may be him hiding signs of illness! I have called an AVIAN vet this time, recommended to me by RSPCA, and I am taking him there in 5 hours (they couldn't see me sooner, unfortunately).

    How successful can one be in saving the lives of budgies who shows signs of tail bobbing/respiartory problems? I am NOT prepared to let Lucky pass away any time soon! I will do everything I can to give him a long, happy life, but I know this vet visit might be crucial in determining his fate... My oh my, it's gonna be a looong day...

    Bubbles

    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  2. #2
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Oh no! If he declines any further take him straight to the vet and stay in the waiting room, if they see that he's really sick they will squeeze him in, while vets do use an appointment system they will also do triage if they have a sick animal in their midst.

    I'm keeping you in my thoughts and hopefully it isn't serious, keep us posted k?


    She is not refined. She is not unrefined. She keeps a parrot. -- Mark Twain

  3. #3
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Thanks TaNnii, yes I'll let you know how it all goes! Fingers are crossed...
    Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  4. #4
    Good Bye Tailfeather WolfRyder's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    I took my tiels into the bathroom and turned the shower on to make steam. About 15 minutes. That helped ease the respiratory distress some.

    Respiratory infections can happen. Even though he loves being with you, it's still stress, which lowers the immune system. When the vet sees him, you'll prolly be given some oral antibiotics. Have the vet show you how to give them! Here in the states, the med of choice seems to be baytril.

    If you do think it's getting worse, do as Tannii suggests and call the vet, say you're bringing him in right now, his distress is worse.

    to watch for:
    breathing through his mouth
    Leaning forward so the body is parrallel to the perch
    fluffing up and staying fluffed

    Hope you get him in soon. Healing energy your way!

    Carol

  5. #5
    Pardon My Pearls Please Tailfeather Oh Mowsie's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Don't panic. Neo (my cockatiel) had tail bobbing too. Though he did have a respitory infection, he wasn't on death's doorstep. I got him to the vet at his scheduled time and he made it through just fine.

    If Lucky is still eating, somewhat active, drinking and not huddling at the bottom of the cage, chances are he'll be fine until his appointment. Just keep an eye on him, keep him warm and keep him out of drafts until his appointment. Let us know how the appointment goes and good luck. Good for you for acting quickly.
    Visit Apache, Neo, Silver, Taxi, Tieka, Trinny, Buzz, Tiggy, Paris, Persephone & Hektor at Nikkie's Cockatiels More of what the flock is up too at their blog. Tiel Tales
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  6. #6
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    In addition to the excellent advice in the other posts, put a heating pad set on low under one side of Lucky's cage so it extends a little up the side. Partially cover his cage and keep him in a quiet, dimly lit room.

    I seem to remember you said it is cold weather where you live so you don't want him to get chilled on the way to the vet. Warm up your car and get heat coming out of the heater so the car is nice and warm before you put Lucky in the car. Wrap his cage in blankets. The heating pad can also provide some residual warmth even though you don't have it plugged in the car.

    Kudos to you for being so observant!!

    Please keep us posted. Best wishes!!!
    Last edited by M&Ds Budgies; 06-22-2005 at 06:44 PM. Reason: Change some wording

  7. #7
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Oh thank you so much everyone, it's very comforting having you here "with me"... I really appreciate all your advice!!!!
    Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  8. #8
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    By the way, I should mention that Lucky is still eating a little (I've also hand fed him carrot and lettuce) and he chirps/sings and catters, plus he's playing with his toys. So far it's not a crisis, but I'm still worried and will make sure I keep him warm and warm up the car etc. I've covered his cage partially with blankets and turned on the heater in the room. I don't have an electric heating pad like Maggie suggested, but I do have a wheatbag which I can heat in the microwave and put near the cage, that might help.
    Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  9. #9
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Just a thought, because I have heard that it has been chilly down your way (Its actually mild here today for a change) if it's cold inside and you don't have a heating pad, a hot water bottle wrapped in newspaper put on one side of the cage will help warm it up.

    How is Lucky acting? I had a budgie with a tail bob showing a bit of respitory distress a little while back, aside from that he was acting normally. I shifted him into a warmer room and he improved immensely, I also noticed that the room he were in made me sneeze so they're not allowed in there anymore. That was a bad night - not a single avian or even bird experienced vet on duty in town! But all is well now.


    She is not refined. She is not unrefined. She keeps a parrot. -- Mark Twain

  10. #10
    Loki - love in bird form Four More Babies Hatched! peachee's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Hi,

    All the advice is absolutely correct. However, since this is a rescue budgie, if s/he has ever been on Baytril before, birds quickly develop a resistance to it. Often even after just one cycle. My cockatiel was prescribed Baytril for a few weeks and I truly believe that she already had a resistance to it so in the end she did pass away and I always have wondered whether another med could have helped her in the beginning. Just voice any and all concerns to a vet so they can do the very best for you. GOOD LUCK!!

    Lisa

    See videos of Loki and the boys here!

  11. #11
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Tannii, it is pretty cold here now. I've had the heater going for most of the day so far, and I've got a wheatbag which I'll heat up and put near the cage (see my post above yours). I wonder if the room temperature needs to be very steady 24 hrs? At night, I turn off the heater and the house cools down quite a bit... is this bad for Lucky? Not sure what the temperature is exactly, but it is noticably different (colder) in the morning.
    Glad that your budgie managed well. Did you take him to a vet the next day?
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  12. #12
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Thanks Lisa, I don't know if Lucky has had any previous treatment. I really don't know anything at all about his history, as he was taken from an abandoned lot of animals. His cage was absolutely gross according to the RSPCA when they got him, and it was still pretty dirty when I got it, so I scrubbed it and cleaned it properly yesterday. He's pretty thin too -he's got a V-shaped chest, which is not good I've heard. Hopefully he'll survive the infection, and I'll fatten him up again!!
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  13. #13
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Finally, some pictures of Lucky! Is he very skinny?
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  14. #14
    Tailfeather Tailfeathers Supporter!Tailfeathers Supporter! Lovebirdfan's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    I am thinking of you and Lucky- so much to go through but well worth it. For an emergency heating pad, you can also use a ziploc baggie filled with warm water and have a light towel wrapped over it. I'm not sure if you have these in Australia, but there are sock and glove warmers that hold heat up to 8 hours that are good for this purpose. There are also small tear-open heat packs that are also used for knee/back injuries that I keep on hand for this reason too. Best of luck to you and Lucky!

  15. #15
    Good Bye Tailfeather WolfRyder's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    he really doesn't look that skinny to me. But most of my budgies are american budgies and tend to be slimmer than the English budgies.

    Can you feel any indention on either side of the keel bone? (breast bone) if you can just feel the breast bone but either side doesn't cave inwards, then he's not too skinny.


    marlsy's daughter, Kelsi(age 13) made this sig for the contest

  16. #16
    Four More Babies Hatched! Luna1285's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Poor lucky! Hope he turns out to be okay so he can live out the rest of his little birdy life healthy and happy!
    PUERTO RICO

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    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    An update!

    Ok, the vet ended up not being "the" vet I wanted, as he was away, but it was the same veterinary office, so I thought they all must be pretty cluey regarding birds. They look after native wildlife too. Anyway, I didn't think the woman was very understanding, although she did a better job than the previous vet, that's for sure. She at least listened to Lucky's breathing through a stethoscope and she checked his droppings under a microscope. She couldn't hear anything wrong with his breathing, and there was no traces of bacteria of any kind in his feaces.
    Lucky poor guy was scraming his head off ALL the time, so I was thinking that she probably couldn't hear anything anyway! \ But I guess I'll have to trust her...
    When she said that "the tailbobbing is normal", I cringed, because I KNEW it isn't! Not like that anyway. She gave me an antibiotic "as a preventative measure", and showed me how to give it via a syringe. (It's called Zithromax) I will only have to give it to him tomorrow, and the two times will last as a week's treatment. I dread having to pick him up, but I have to do it. I just hope he doesn't hate me forever afterwards...
    Overall, the vet woman said she thinks Lucky will be ok, but of course, she couldn't guarantee anything. She told me that, "well, when you rescue birds you're bound to have heartaches" -thanks a bunch, I thought, stop rubbing it in!
    I pray that Lucky lives - I can only try with the antibiotics, keeping him warm, and making sure he eats and drinks. I've given him millet sprays, cuttlebone and I've bought a few more veggies, including silverbeet, which I'll introduce slowlly.
    Sorry for the long post, but thank you all for "listening"... Much appreciated!!!
    Adele/Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  18. #18
    Brand New Egg PercyPercyPercy's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Yikes! That sounds very stressful... for Lucky *and* you!

    I had several vet visits and one round of medications (baytril) for Percy because of respitory issues. Oddly, Percy's tail still bobs a bit when she's resting. She's seen a specialist at a Vetrinary College and had tests done... everyone agrees the tail bobbing is troubling (so it's weird the vet you went to said it was normal) but there are absolutely no other signs of illness. I just try to be very conscious for any other symptoms.

    Here's hoping Lucky feels better soon!

  19. #19
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Keep an eye on him. Did she weigh him while you were there? I've read somewhere and it may or may not be true, but underweight birds tend to have a more defined tail bob when they breathe simply by virtue of the fact they don't have as much weight to keep them stable. And given the atrocious conditions he was found in, it's possible that he might be on the thin side. Not that he looks it from the pics, but you never know.


    She is not refined. She is not unrefined. She keeps a parrot. -- Mark Twain

  20. #20
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Antibiotics

    TY Percy & TaNnii, I'll keep my eye on him!
    The vet weighed him, and I think she said he is 40grams.
    He's been less active since the vet visit yesterday, but he eats and he chirps & chatters occationally, mimicing the birds outside! He is also TALKING, but I cannot quite work out the human words that he's saying. I actually thought I heard him swearing at some point!
    Does antibiotics in birds create any side effects?
    Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  21. #21
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    wow, she said tail bobing is normal? It means the bird is having a hard time breathing I believe...It is so hard to get a good vet for a bird. I've been there...
    PUERTO RICO

  22. #22
    I'm A budgieaholic Tailfeather kathy5's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    40 grams no your bird is not skinny
    I hope he gets well soon he is a very hansome bird
    my helpfull birdy page
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  23. #23
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    40 grams is an excellent weight. Good for Lucky!

    Budgies tail bob for various reasons. Usually it means that they are having a hard time breathing either because of a respiratory illness or something in their abdomen is acutely wrong and paining them such as a tumor or fatty liver disease. Statistically, I've found that tumors cause almost 30% of budgie deaths since they are more common than one would think. We just lost one of our budgies not too long ago to an abdominal tumor. If you find it early enough, it can be possibly removed or treated. That wasn't the case with our budgie that we lost.

    If you see alot of sneezing or hear clicking, squeaking or like a "wheezing" sound while he breathes, this is also an indication that something is wrong. The clicking shouldn't be confused with regular clicking/grinding noises of the beak that budgies make when they are content or when they are scared. You'll get to know both in time. Is he regurgitating what he eats very much? This is another thing to watch carefully for when your budgie seems to be eating normally or has an excessive appetite. Sometimes they eat more because they are burning the calories up at a rapid rate as it relates to "fluffing up" alot if they aren't feeling well.

    Concerns right off for me would be psittacosis, tumors or fatty liver disease. Testing for these conditions is done by blood work and can pretty much only be detected by lab work. You can't see with the human eye any of these illnesses and they are among the most common illnesses in budgies next to scaly face/mites. In extreme respiratory distress, a budgie would assume more of a horizontal position in posture to help with breathing. The lungs in a budgie are positioned somewhat lower in their body than one might think so they also shift their weight from one foot to the other to help compensate in extreme cases. When this happens, it's also an indication of something paining a budgie internally that may be symptomatic of the tail bobbing as well. I've come to learn some of this through personal experience with what we've been through with our little darlings.

    Normal tail bobbing in a budgie would be when they are nervous or scared. Also, if they have just been super active when they start to rest and come down from the "budgie crazyness" the tail bobbing can occur but it shouldn't last long at all, it should quit fairly quickly. I've noticed this with our budgies. When they get that ridiculous kind of silly and then settle down, their little tails will bob for about 30 seconds or so and then settle in and stop. Probably because their lungs are positioned so low that the breathing of course has to stabilize just like our breathing does after exercise. Our chests heave up and down until we are "normal" again just like their little tailfeathers. And of course, after flying their tails may bob for a tiny bit until they stabilize themselves in perching position again. These are all examples of normal budgie tail bobbing which would be tail bobbing that is not persistent or consistent. Consistent tail bobbing needs to have that budgie at the Avian and if the Avian can't find anything in weight, droppings, demeanor or by doing a physical exam by means of pushing on the body gently for protruding growths to detect tumors or growths, blood work should most definitely be done.

    Hope I've helped some. We've been through hell and back with our budgies this last year and had some serious loss as well as just silly scares and have the serious Avian bills to prove it. In fact, we are still paying Avian bills from this last year. {sigh} So I've studied tail bobbing in depth/detail from all we've been through.

    I certainly hope your little Lucky is okay and it's just normal tail bobbing. If not, I hope your Avian or Veterinarians will take you seriously and do some blood work. Blood work is actually a good idea anyway because it will let you know exactly what is going on with little Lucky. Nothing will be hidden and it will even help you for dietary needs with regard to what is actually better for him to live a long and happy life. I'd highly recommend having the lab work done.

  24. #24
    Baby bubbles's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Wow Rhema, that's great info! Thanks heaps!

    I suggested to the vet that a blood sample would be a good idea, but the vet refused to do it! She said that there's too little blood in a budgie, and that whatever she drew out of him wouldn't be enough to examine for diseases. When I tried to discuss it with her, it was obvious she didn't want to do it. (No offence to anybody, but she seemed to be an elderly woman, and I'm just thinking that perhaps she is stuck in her 'old' ways of doing things?!). Anyway, I have to find another vet if I am to get a blood sample done...
    By the way, Is a blood test very expensive in the US?

    Lucky's tailbobbing is still there, but subtle. The tail bobs only a couple of mm, if that. He doesn't sound clicky or wheezy (yet), and he eats normally (I think). He visits the seed bowl a few times during the day, plus he eats a bit of millet and I give him silverbeet, which he LOVES. He drinks regularly too.
    I'm hoping that the antibiotics I've given him will have helped if he does have an infection, but it would be best if the tailbobbing is in fact normal... He is quite active, and flys around a bit when I take him out of the cage. He sing and talks a lot too; I guess if he was really ill, he wouldn't do that! But I'll keep an eye on him and look out for any other symptoms.

    I'm sorry to hear about all the trouble you've had with your budgie friends, and the loss you've had...I hope all is well with the rest now!

    Bubbles
    Lucky -the rescued budgie...RIP
    Matisse -always remembered...RIP


  25. #25
    Spank me...I iz naughty!! Tailfeather Sir Peter of Canada's Avatar
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    Re: Lucky is seeing a vet ASAP, his tail is bobbing!

    Hi Bubbles...I agree with what has been said in some of the previous posts, however if Lucky's tail bobbing is as you say, a couple of mm if even that, then I would not be overly concerned about it. As you can see from my sig, we have a rather large "herd" of budgies and there is a big difference between "ill bird" tail bobbing and "normal" tail bobbing. All of our birds have a minor amount of tail bobbing and our avian vet has seen all of them at one time or another (some more than others) and she has never been concerned with it unless the bird was showing other signs of illness. Just keep an eye on Lucky and if you see anything more than what you have seen with the tail bob, then I would look into it. Also...good luck finding an avian vet who is a little more, shall we say, up to date

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