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Thread: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

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    Brand New Egg Magicpet13's Avatar
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    Unhappy Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Hi guys,

    I am a new member to this community and also a new member to bird forums in general.
    I've been worried about my lovebird lately because she has not been doing well.

    Last Wednesday (today is Saturday for me), I first noticed something was off when she didn't wake me up around 7-8am when the sun rises. Instead of her usual loud chirps they were airy and softer. I didn't think too much about it at the time. Later that same day around 2pm I came to check on her and noticed that every time she did these airy/screechy chirps she twitched (it was like her whole body just bounced against her will). I was immediately concerned and rushed her to the nearest vet that would take in a bird.

    When the vet saw her he confirmed she was having seizures and said there could be a multitude of causes (lead poisoning/heavy metal poisoning, tumors, internal problems, etc). He went ahead and took 2 X-rays of her, drew her blood for testing and gave her some diazepam for the seizures. The X-Rays showed something in her intestinal track. A bunch of little pieces of something. I couldn't imagine what she could have eaten since I only let her out of her cage once a week and not near something of that shape. The theory right now is that she may have eaten pieces of her old cage. She is a 13 year old bird and her cage was about 10 yrs old.

    We are waiting for her blood work lab results to come in to confirm if it is lead poisoning (which sadly may be a best case scenario because it is more treatable than tumors and internal problems).

    When I took her home she was knocked out from the sedation they gave her to draw her blood, etc. I immediately went to Petco and bought her a new cage. After setting it up for her I realized it is way too big for her. The bars are big and it's really tall and I'm afraid of her climbing up it and hurting herself so I bought her a new one online that is supposed to ship at the earliest by Tuesday.

    She's been eating, and drinking a little bit. And pooping, but not as frequently and her poop tends to be thicker and stickier than usual.

    Unfortunately, I have to wait till Monday for the medicine to treat her for the lead poisoning (if that is what's wrong) because the vet informed me there is no one in our area with medicine for her. We live in Florida and he had to order it all the way from New Jersey.

    She's been twitching non-stop since Wednesday. On Wednesday she was knocked out for most of the day from the sedation then woke up ate and drank some and pooped and climbed her new cage.

    On Thursday she didn't climb her cage anymore (maybe because she fell a few times? Maybe because the twitching is in inhibiting her?). She started screeching every time she twitched too non-stop. Even at night, though it is a little more subdued and she seems to have rare breaks where she doesn't squeak.

    I gave her peanut butter and 1/8 tea spoon of plain Metamucil (with Psyllium as it's main ingredient) because the vet said it would help bind the pieces in her intestines and would help her poop it out. I tried the best I could to get her to eat the peanut butter since she's never had any before. I mixed it with the metamucil and her seeds and she only ate a little from my finger when I put it on her beak.

    I'm afraid for her because I'm not sure how much sleep she is getting with this constant bodily shocks and screech with every shock. I called the vet today to see if we should have her sedated again because she may not have slept well since Wednesday and it is now Saturday and we have to wait till Monday to help her (meaning 4-5 days with poor sleep ). He told me it would be dangerous and he doesn't recommend it. Since she is so small she could overdose with it in her system especially since she got some Wednesday. He is optimistic she will make it to Monday and I pray she does too and I just want to help!

    I feel ignorant for not realizing her old cage could be dangerous to her and I'm doing my best. Keeping her company as much as I can and trying to help her sleep by closing the blinds and the door to block out noise and light and throwing a blanket over parts of her cage at night to help so she can sleep.

    I don't want her to exhaust her body out and I want to help!!

    Please let me know what I can do!!!
    And if you have any comments or suggestions about any part of my situation.

    P.S. - Sorry this is so long, I just have no one to talk to about this and I wanted to share my story for others who may have the same problem.

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    Tailfeather boomer girl's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Sila my heart is breaking for you and I just am so sorry this is happening to your loved lovebird. They thought my lovie had metal poisoning at one time and he was given drugs for it right away. Have you called any other vets in your area to see if they have any drugs you can use for her until you get the other meds that are being shipped? When they thought boomer had metal poisoning they kept him and gave him shots of Calcium EDTA and shots to keep him hydrated for two days and then he came home and we had to give him this smelly medicine Succimer (DSMA) which he hated but it is what they treat small birds with. I hate to say it but birds cannot live that long with lead in there system. I hope and pray its not lead in your lovies body. If I were you I would definitely call all the other vets in your area to see if they have calcium EDTA that they can give your lovebird and it would be something that could save her and help her not so miserable until the other meds come in. I found lots of different things you can give your lovie for now on this page, http://www.holisticbird.org/pages/hmetal.htm It was one that I read when they thought boomer had metal in his gut. I think if it were lead your baby might not be here anymore so this could be zinc which is on lots of older cages and also some toys.

    Keep you lovie nice and warm and if you have a fish tank these make great hospital beds, here is a forum post that tells you how to make a hospital bed for them. http://www.tailfeathersnetwork.com/b...n/firstaid.php

    I feel so bad for you and your lovie and it just must be so awful to see her twitching like this and I am surprised your vet didnt keep her in the office and give her fluids to keep her hydrated and also some sort of meds to detox her body. Metal poisoning is something that needs to be treated aggressively and by what my vet told me it is something that can and will get better with treatments. The shots of calcium EDTA will cure her and it will make her better right away. Please keep us updated on her condition and do also try to take care of yourself. If you are like me you must be just a nervous wreck seeing her this way. Big hugs to you and lots of get well thoughts and prayers to your little girl.
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    I think the nasty, heavy, white droppings are actually good - part of how they rid their body of the rubbish.

    millet might help a little. it's really easy to digest and might help her feel a bit better. in a way it might be better to not spend so much time with her. I know it's your gut instinct as a good parront, but if you're fussing her, she probably isn't sleeping all that well.

    I hope your little one does well x


    Thanks Lee for the adorable sig!

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    @boomer girl - Hi, I did think about calling some of the local vets to see if they could treat her. I may do that tomorrow. Inform them on what's been done to her and see if they have any alternative suggestions or treatments to make her feel better in the meantime. You don't think what they give her (if they give her something) will effect her from being able to receive whatever med it is my vet will give her Monday, do you?

    I wish my vet kept her there and hydrated and treated her as yours did. It would put me in a better state of mind. Maybe it's because they aren't a 24/7 vet place? Or he saw I was a college student and wanted to save me money, but I let him know I would pay whatever I had to to help her. She's my baby. I already paid $423 on her first visit for the X-Rays, diazepam, and blood draw, plus office visit. Maybe it's because he's not as familiar with the treatment of birds. Though he's been really helpful and supportive so far! And I've been bugging him with calls and questions.

    As for the list of stuff I can give my bird I really appreciate it. I'm not very fluent on all the proper medications (let alone how to give them to her). I struggled just trying to get her to eat the peanut butter and metamucil. She never ate the whole dose and I don't know how to force feed without hurting her. I'm glad I can look over the list though. I want to be informed.

    As for the keeping her warm, do you think that she may overheat or anything because her body is constantly shocking and that may use up her energy and raise her body temperature? I turned the fan that normally runs in my room to low, but I'll turn it off now. And unfortunately, I don't have a fish tank or anything of the sort to create her a little sick bed. In the new cage I bought her I put a little soft piece of clothe at the bottom of her cage for comfort. I also used the small plastic container to hold her seeds which I placed at the bottom of the cage for her along with a small little plastic bird bathtub she usually bathes in that I put at the bottom of her cage to drink water (she's been eating and drinking from both). I have toys in her cage and bars (I'll remove the bars ASAP. I don't want her to fall). Should I remove the toys too? I feel bad cause I keep changing her environment and I don't know if this stresses her? Another question: Should I put a blanket over her cage to keep her warmer? That used to help her sleep before. I don't wrap it all over. I leave holes so she can peer through and get air, but I drape it over around the cage. And if I Should drape a blanket over her cage should I keep doing that even during the daytime?
    I had another random question: Should I take her outside to get sunlight? I heard something about how that provides Vitamin D and can be good for them. Though I don't want to stress her anymore. Been trying to let her sleep all day except when I change the things in her cage or give her new seeds or change her water. I cleaned her cage today too so I woke her up then also D:.

    I may call around to some other vets tomorrow and ask their professional opinion on what I should do. Tomorrow is her last day though so help should be soon.

    And thank you so much for your support. I've been a great mess lately. Really emotional and depressed and haven't been hungry. I'm spending my days at home so I can watch out for her (except when I have to work). I'll keep you guys updated on the happenings.

    P.S. - Sorry about all the questions! You don't have to answer all of them and anyone else can chime in if they have any advice or suggestions!

    @pixibubbles - Thanks for the bit on the heavy droppings I wasn't aware. Gives me more confidence! And I'll look into the millet. I've been afraid to introduce her to so many dietary changes, but if it makes her better I'll certainly consider it.

    And I actually agree with you on the spending so much time with her. It crossed my mind that I may be hovering around her too much and waking her too much so I've been trying to make a habit of staying out of the room and checking on her every once and a while to make sure she's okay. Thanks for your wishes as well.

    Thank you both!

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Boomers vet was a very good vet and she knew exactly what to do and she did it for him before even knowing if it was metals in his gut. She said that treating them right away is the best thing to do and if they dont have metals in there system then that is great and you can just stop all treatments then. It dont hurt them to treat, she said it hurts them if you dont until you find out for sure what it is bothering them. It wasnt until we got the blood work back showing us it wasnt metals we stopped treated him. If yours wasnt a avian vet it least it sounds like they knew how to treat her because taking blood from a bird isnt a easy job and neither is Xrays. Do you know what meds they ordered? If you find a vet that can give her a shot of Calcium EDTA it will not interfere with other meds. I think it bonds to the metals like the peanut butter does and detoxifies it enough so it wont damage them anymore. I am happy she is eating and drinking and like Pixibubbles said spray millet is a great food to give her when she is sick along with her other foods. I remember when boomer was brought home after they treated him for the metals I read a story about a girl who was travelling that kept her bird healthy enough by feeding it peanut butter and Metamucil so that also seems to me that your vet knew what to do until the meds came in. We use to make boomer eat things but sticking the foods under his top beak. He hated it but it did make him try foods even though he would shake his head and most of it would fly out.

    I dont know if the seizures are overheating her so I cant honestly answer the question about keeping her warmer. I do know I heard that sick birds need warmth because they lose lots of there energy which helps them stay warm when they are sick. Every time boomer was sick with his yeast I put a heating pad under his cage and covered 3 sides of it to keep him nice and warm. I wouldnt have a fan on her right now because if she does need to stay warm this could make her lose even more heat. Since you dont have any other cage or tank be sure to pad her cage lots and take the perches out because it would be awful if she did fall down now. I also thought about her stressing because everything changed so fast but you got to do what needs to be done to make sure she is safe.

    Boomer was a very sick boy for two years and I know the feelings your having all to well and it makes us crazy knowing we cant do anything for them. I had to force myself to eat and sleeping was a hard thing to do because I was afraid he wouldnt be alive the next day. You really need to eat and take care of yourself because she needs you to be strong for her. What is her name? Knowing her name helps make it more personal because then she is someone we know.

    Still sending you many good thoughts and get well thoughts to her. Thanks for letting us know how she is doing and hopefully you can find a vet to call tomorrow to talk to them about her situation and hopefully one of them can treat her for now with drugs to help her. We have a big avian vet school about two hours away from us that was real expensive but in emergencies they were open 24 hours a day and only once did I need to go down there and they saved him so it was well worth the money and time to me.
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

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    Brand New Egg Magicpet13's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    My bird's name is Loving ^^

    And I called around to a couple of different local vets today. Since it's Sunday most of them are closed. But I called the 24 hour practices as well as places that have an Avian vet or who's site advertised familiarity with small pets, exotic pets or birds.

    The first place I called told me unfortunately, their Avian vet of 8 years is on vacation and to hold tight for her meds tomorrow.
    The second place I called went ahead and got my contact information as well as the name of my bird, vet and hospital. They were able to contact my vet for me after hours and had him call me. I felt bad cause I keep seeming to bug him even on his day off, but he found a way to console me. Gave me more suggestions on how to help Loving. He offered giving her another shot of diazepam, but when he found out she didn't respond to it (as in she kept twitching regardless of the shot on Wednesday when I left with her injection) he didn't recommend we give her another shot because it would be unnecessary stress. He also informed me the shot they give her on Monday may not stop the twitches either. That what she needs is to get the metal pieces out of her system and the best way to do that is to have them bind so they will pass. He suggested I try having her eat more peanut butter (he said about 3 sunflower seeds worth of peanut butter a day would be really good for her).

    So as soon as she wakes up (cause I think she's been doing her best to sleep the past few hours) I'm gonna remove her bars and swing that she has and then I'm going to try to get her to eat as much to the full daily dose of peanut butter as I can.

    And yes, I agree my vet seems well versed on the knowledge of birds. What he says is matching up with all this research I'm doing. And as I've seen on many sites and heard from you as well it is very impressive that he was able to draw blood for her and he did it in such a timely manner as well.

    I turned the fan off last night and we slept without it on in my room (since that's where her cage has always been - in my room). I think I'm gonna drape a blanket over her for more added warmth since I don't have any heating pads.

    And yes, my boyfriend came over yesterday to try to help me be strong in this situation. He gave me his words of wisdom and I've been trying to be strong for the both of us, Loving and I.

    Thanks for the good thoughts. I've been doing all I can for her.

    Keep you posted.

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    I am happy your boyfriend came over to comfort you because you too need to be comforted and taken care of because it does play with our minds when we see our birds so sick. Loving is a beautiful name for your lovie and I am sure she is very much loved. I think the peanut butter is very much needed. And I am happy your vet called you, this had to ease your mind a little bit that they are concerned enough to call you and advice you on what to do. When do you go back to get the meds? Are you going to take Lovings with you so they can check her out again? Do you know what kind of blood tests are being done on Lovings because if this isnt metals in her gut other tests could show you something else that is going on. I was just like you and searched the web and forums for answers and it helped me because it kept my mind sane seeing others went though the same thing and there birds survived.

    I hope you can get her to eat more peanut butter today in hopes it will bind to the metals and flush it out. And of course I do hope Lovings gets her meds tomorrow and starts to feel better with each dose you give to her. My thoughts go out to you and your Lovings. Sending you big hugs and stay strong for your girl. I know your feelings your having all to well and its hard not to just fall apart but you got to stay strong for her.
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Try mixing the peanut butter with millet. it's a great food. Easy to digest and tasty. It's usually one of the first solid foods that baby birds will eat. When one of my birds got hold of some chocolate by accident (please don't ask - hated myself for it) my bird keeper friend said to stuff him with millet - coz most birds will pig out on millet and it sort of helps them poop anything else out lol

    the only thing to warn you (so you don't worry) a lot of birds I know will get kind of sleepy afterwards - like if we eat a huge meal. In fact some birds will almost pass out from it. There's some cute pics of a few budgies and lines on this board who have flopped out in 'millet comas' and my vet told me about one bird who goes almost totally unconscious. So when she has to have tests done her owner gives her loads of millet and by the time she gets to the vets she's half asleep and doesn't even care when she gets blood drawn lol

    It sounds like you've found a good vet. I hope the meds come in on time and Loving gets better soon x I did a bit of research - the prognosis for recovery is fair - even with critical cases. As bad as it is watching Loving seize, she's eating by herself and drinking. You haven't mentioned bloody droppings which would be critical too.

    It's most likely that this is zinc poisoning over lead - in which case you need to be aware that there can be renal complications. See if you can get milk thistle. You can buy the extract from health food stores - but check it's alcohol free. And be aware it's messy. The best option is milk thistle seeds. You can feed 4 or 5 to a bird of Loving's size. It supports the renal system and helps flush toxins. By all means check with your vet - but I don't think there are any interactions.

    My little guy had a big of an infection when he was younger which we treated with antibiotics and milk thistle. I spent about three weeks shoving the stuff down his little beak and fighting and getting bitten before discovering that the only thing Sammy loves more than millet is milk thistle seeds. Go figure lol
    Last edited by pixibubbles; 08-05-2012 at 11:37 AM.


    Thanks Lee for the adorable sig!

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    Brand New Egg Magicpet13's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    @boomer girl - Yes, my boyfriend and my friends and family have been really supportive in this situation; praying and doing their best to comfort me. And yes, my sister named her Loving when she was about 5/6 yrs old. When she heard the bird was a Lovebird she named her loving lol

    The predicted date to the arrival of the medicine is tomorrow so I'm praying I hear from them soon tomorrow morning!! He ordered the meds Wednesday so I really pray it will arrive from New Jersey by tomorrow. It'll be 3 business days. And yes I will take Loving with me since the medication will be injected into her. The vet said she will have to receive 7 shots. 1 shot per day so I will be making routine visits throughout the week so she can get her injections. Of course, they will take this opportunity to look over her condition and determine any other treatments. Hopefully, her blood work comes in Monday too so we can confirm what is the matter to better treat the situation. And to be honest, I'm not sure specifically what type of other tests are being done. I hope the results are thorough or they spend more time examining her blood because I did do a lot of research and saw it could be a multitude of other things (nutritional deficiencies etc.) The X-Rays showed something in her gut which is why the predominate theory right now is metal poisoning.

    I also really appreciate this online bird community. It's nice to talk to others in similar situations and to people with just as much a love for birds as I It's really supportive and gives me hope.

    And yes, my peanut butter feeds with her were way more successful today. I placed about an 1/8 tea spoon of peanut butter on my finger every time I fed her and I fed her at 10am, 2pm and 10:30pm (after I got off work). She ate the whole 10am session, a fair amount at 2pm, and a better amount at 10:30pm though not as good as 10am. I placed it on my fingers and would touch the bottom of her beak with it so she'd lick it off. In the morning she actually made an effort to eat some and for a bit at night she did the same. The afternoon was harder to get her to eat, but I got her to eat some.

    And thanks again Deanna, for all your good wishes. It really means alot.

    @pixibubbles - Where do you get your millet at? I haven't had a chance to get any today cause I was at work, but I may get some in the future. I normally buy her seeds at Wal-mart. If I recall I think they may have some millet. How much does it cost?
    And I really like the thought of it helping her poop out the stuff and mixing it with the peanut butter, plus she's been sleep deprived from this constant twitching that it would really help if the millet could make her sleep. Thanks for warning me btw, right now I think I'd worry if I saw her pass out lol

    And yes I'm really glad I got this vet he seems well versed and informed and invested in her health. And that is one thing that keeps me sane is that she is drinking and eating on her own so she'll have energy in her even if she is exhausting herself with the twitches.
    One thing that worries me and it didn't seem too extreme at the time, but when I cleaned her cage yesterday I did see one bird dropping that looked like it was a bloody one. All the rest were the heavy sticky green ones, but there was a small dried up red one. A few years back (not even sure how many to be honest) she had one bloody dropping in the past. I was really worried. I did a lot of research, but she seemed absolutely fine the rest of the day and nothing ever came from it. I thought maybe the red was coming from the magazine page that she pooped on and that the ink bled from her poop or something? Not sure if this is a same case scenario if it's from her magazine or what? I did take a pic of it cause it did concern me.
    And can you clarify on the renal complications? Do you mean she will have internal kidney complications or digestion or problems using the bathroom?
    I will ask my vet about the milk thistles tomorrow. Need to make myself a to-do list cause I'm afraid I'm going to forget something lol. 1) millet mixed with peanut butter 2) milk thistle (alcohol free) for now! How much does the milk thistle cost by the way on the top of your head? Also how is it messy? =O And I should give her 4-5 a day?

    Sorry for all the questions D:

    And cool I hope she likes milk thistle too. I've been introducing so many new things to her diet lately.

    Thanks!

    And thanks to you both!

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    I wasnt here yesterday and I hope Lovings is still good today and she has been taken to the vet for the first shot.

    Does she eat any colored seeds or pellets in her seed mix? Those would make Lovings poops look colored like that. I dont know if this correct so you might want to google it but I think if they are bloody or bright red then it is blood coming from below the digestive system and if its dark colored almost black this is internal bleeding. If I were you I would take her paper that she poops on to the vets with you so she can take a look at them.

    I am happy Lovings is eating her peanut butter, this is great news. I am hoping the medicine they are shipping is Calcium EDTA because it is given only by injection and it is the best to detox her body if this is metals. When they thought boomer had metal poisoning it was because he too had something in his belly and after the tests came back negative the vet decided it was some sort of sand in there. I know it was Tile grout because due to his yeast troubles he tended to leap on the floor and try to pry up the tile grout to eat it. That stuff stayed in his belly for over a month and it made me know why most vets say dont feed your birds gravel and grit. If just that tiny bit stayed in his belly for a month I would hate to see what a birds gizzard looked like that had gravel and grit in a bowl in his cage.

    You can find millet at any bird store and most pet stores. It is sold as a big bunch of it and it is called spray millet. I would chop mine into about 1 1/2 inch pieces because it is somewhat dusty and if I didnt cut mine up boomer would devour it and end up chocking on it. He did have a crop ulcer but his vet told me many birds will eat it so fast that lots do chock on it but they only eat it fast because they do love it. I fed boomer millet for a month when he was on medicines because he loved it and its easy on there insides.

    Hugs to you Sila and Lovings will be in my thoughts until we know she is OK.
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    poops are green coz she;s not eating... the bile acid doesn't get diluted. In this case green might actually be good. You know she's not eating, but green means bile is still be produced.

    That one little dropping doesn't look too bad. I only mentioned it because most birds get really bloody droppings when have severe heavy metal poisoning. The renal problems are often a side effect of chronic heavy metal poisoning - especially zinc (which a lot of cages are made of). The milk thistle could support her renal system and offer some protection - it's the main ingredient in liver detoxes too.

    Milk thistle essense (the on that's alcohol free and from health food stores) is sticky and brown and kinda messy. Think I paid about 7 a bottle and had to bribe Sammy to take it. Very messy and icky process, but worth it if you can't get the seeds straight off.

    Millet I can buy in UK supermarkets - but I get it from the garden centre coz Sammy likes that one better. I don't think I've ever paid more than about 2 a box - and that would be from the supermarket. Lose you can buy a kilo for a few . It's just a seed, but one they really like. It's not a drug or magic, just tasty and easy to digest.

    Milk thistle seeds (what they get the essence from) are cheap, don't really go off, and Sammy think's they're yummy. He's allowed 3-4 a day - but he's only a little 40 gram fisher's lovebird. A 45-50 gram peachy could probably get 4-5 seeds a day. Maybe more when detoxing - ask the vet. I order mine online - but it's a UK site, so no good for you.

    I'm glad Loving is eating x

    And welcome to the boards. Sadly it usually panic and worry that brings us here, but lots of us stay


    Thanks Lee for the adorable sig!

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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Your bird is getting the needed vet care. A regular bird owner probably can't figure out exactly what is wrong with your bird. Since this is serious, let the vet do all the care and decisions if posible.

  13. #13
    Brand New Egg Magicpet13's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    So it's been a very long and stressing day for me. I'm writing this at work so I'm just going to write a quick synopsis and reply to anyone's direct commentary when I get a chance later.

    This morning I called my vet around 12:20pm and found that the medicine was still not there. The estimation would be that it would get in around 5pm or even tomorrow. I was browsing online for any other local vets I could call because I was tired of waiting. I came across the Association of Avian Veterinarians page and used their "Find a Vet" feature. It led me to another Animal Hospital.
    I called them and told them my story. They told me I should bring her in because the longer she waits the more dangerous.

    I took her in and they looked over her and the first thing the Avian vet of many years said was it doesn't look like it's lead poisoning to her. She noticed something which I overlooked: that my bird was twitching to the right every time she twitched. The vet's immediate inclination was that it was a stroke and that Loving is only getting good circulation on one side of the body. This hospital had all the paperwork and Loving's X-Rays and Blood work results sent to them from the other hospital. She said the blood work results came in and her lead levels were normal. My original vet called me at this time and offered to send me the medication (to treat the lead) at a cost to the vet I was at. I decided not to get the shot.
    Instead my new vet gave her a shot of Valium (diazepam) to help her get some sleep because she was exhausted. She told me Loving has cataracts in both her eyes. She also told me Loving was very skinny. She was 35 grams and according to the blood paper work from the other vet's measurements on Wednesday she was 43 grams meaning she lost 8 grams over this weekend. They gave her a shot of steroids to help decrease any swelling she may have in case it is a brain tumor and to stop inflammation and help with the stroke. She said steroids are controversial because steroids will lower her immune system, but that at this point it may be the best decision for her. Better than death. I let her give the steroid shot and I have to be careful not to expose her to any bacteria or anything so she won't also get infected.

    They also told me to make a sick bed for her. To buy an aquarium and heating pad. They also told me to buy her some Hand feeding formula so she can get her proper nutrition and gain her weight back. I bought some Kay Tee Hand Feeding Formula for her. The new vet ALSO ordered some prescription medication for her. Since I'm not home I can't tell you exactly what they are, but one is Phenobarbital and another "P" medication I have to look up when I get home. [ It was Prednisolone]. One medicine I believe is supposed to help her sleep and treat her seizures, the other is supposed to reduce potential swelling etc. [ Phenobarbital is supposed to treat the seizures and help her sleep, Prednisolone is supposed to reduce inflammation and treat the potential tumor/stroke.]

    So much was told to me that I'm very stressed. I had to buy everything and I'm at work now (was almost late). I don't get off till midnight. I was able to set up her sick bed and boil some water for her and my sister's going to try and hand feed her. My sis is watching Loving now.

    I'll fill you guys on more detail later when I've relaxed and am able to calm down. They told me I would probably have to give one of those "P" meds to her for the rest of her life. [ "Phenobarbital"] If it's a tumor they said she could live another year with the medication, but it's not reversible unfortunately.

    I have to find a way to mentally cope with this and all the stress. And to be honest I'm a little nervous to hand feed. I've never done it, but they told me how. They gave me some syringes and measurements of how much I should give her. Told me to feed her from her left side and to put a drop at first till she starts drinking then slowly put the rest and not to do it from her right side because that's where her windpipe is. They said I can tell when she's full when her crop is filled so to keep an eye on that.

    Piece you guys in later. Got to transfer my desk location.
    Last edited by Magicpet13; 08-07-2012 at 09:59 AM.

  14. #14
    Tailfeather boomer girl's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    Poor sweet Lovings I have to say my heart is breaking for you. I am happy you brought her into a new vet and they are giving her something for her to take now to hopefully make her feel more comfortable. I dont have any words of wisdom for you because I never knew any birds that had a stroke before. When they get older and have health problems it really is hard for us parronts who need to take care of them but someway you do find a way to handle it. Boomer was sick his last two and half years and it made me a nervous wreck but I would do it all over again if I needed to do it. They are like family and need us even more then our human family. I am happy your sister helps take care of her. If you have problems with the feeding the vets office will probablly show you how to do it. My prayers are with both of you.
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

  15. #15
    Brand New Egg Magicpet13's Avatar
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    Re: Lovebird losing sleep because of seizures. How do I help?

    I went ahead and edited my previous post I did at work ^. I put the important additions in red.

    I will reply to direct commentary first then give more updates.

    @boomer girl - Loving is doing much better than the weekend for sure. I thank you for your kind wishes again.
    And yes, Loving's seed mix is colored, a multi-colored Premium Parakeet seed I buy from Wal-mart. She does have some red seeds in there. She used to eat them regularly enough, but that would be nice to know if that is the cause of the different colored poop she had.
    I have also stopped giving her the peanut butter since the metal theory is ruled out, but in a way I'm glad I gave it to her 3 times a day considering all the weight she lost it may have been the most calories she was getting. She was eating her seeds (not as much as before), but I guess she was burning them off faster than she was taking in the calories because of all the twitching. In the end she may have stopped trying to eat because she was so sleep deprived and was focusing on conserving her energy to try to sleep.

    And to be honest I still don't know what medication my first vet was trying to send in. They never told me. I was just informed it would treat lead poisoning.
    And I wonder if my bird ate some tile grout too? I definitely have tiles in my room so maybe that's what she ate or maybe she ate some sand that I and my family may have tracked into my room? Who knows, but I don't think that's the culprit anymore.
    And why do they sell grit then if it's not good for birds? I definitely saw some at Wal-mart when I bought Loving new toys, a new bowl and metamucil.The way they advertised it I thought I should buy it, but I didn't in the end. Didn't want to overwhelm her with changes.
    I forgot to ask my vet about the millet so I haven't bought any yet, but I did see it the Pet Supermarket I went to yesterday. Since Loving hasn't been eating her seeds lately (maybe cause the Hand Feeding formula we give to her 4 times a day is keeping her full) I haven't bought the millet yet cause she may not eat that either. She also hasn't been drinking from her bathtub anymore that I've noticed. What keeps me at ease though is the Hand-feeding formula is mixed with warm water, so she still is staying hydrated, right?
    Also what's a crop ulcer? And how does a bird get one?

    Thanks for all your support Deanna! ^-^ <3

    @pixibubbles - And yeah that makes since now the reason her poop was green cause the vet confirmed she was losing a lot of the weight. The thing though is her poop has always been green, just not so heavy and thick and sticky and usually more liquidy or not as much white. Is that bad? I always thought it was normal.

    Since the metal theory was ruled out I haven't bought the milk thistle, though I like to know these things. I noticed my mom had Milk Thistle capsules after I read what you said, but I believe you mentioned Milk Thistle seeds for the bird instead. And yeah the process sounds just as messy as everything else I've had fed Loving already. And yeah I hope Loving gets back to the 40-50 gram weight again. The new vet and her assistant kept saying "poor baby, we need to fatten her up" and I agree. When I was at the Pet Supermarket I saw two versions of Kay Tee Hand Feeding formula, the plain one and the High Fat. I was tempted to buy her the high fat, but after calling my sister for her opinion we decided to stick as close to the vet's instructions as we could and bought her the regular one.

    Though I think she's more comfortable she hasn't been eating and drinking like before. We've been hand feeding her and letting her sleep. Maybe this is better for her for now? And I guess I can ask you the same question too, should I be worried that she's not drinking. The hand feeding formula is mixed with warm water, so she is staying hydrated, right? We hand feed her 4 times a day a centimeters worth each time.

    And thanks for the welcome! I didn't know about these bird forums till I started doing research when my bird got sick. Since I didn't see many other people post similar stories to mine I wanted to share it to help inform others. And I really like the community thing and talking to other people who are familiar with birds. I may stick around to keep myself updated on things. It reminds me of this anime forum I used to be apart of when I was younger :] of course, we all have a different binding likeness this time.

    @Birdmanca - Thanks for the advice! I always consider this and all my options before I treat my bird. I do a lot of research and I don't settle for one opinion often (as you may see from my switching my vet). I do what I feel is best for my bird and based on her response I edit my methods to help treat her

    @boomergirl again - Yes, I'm so glad she is able to feel more comfortable now. I'm a little worried I may have missed some of her phenobarbital dosage when I tried to hand feed her earlier cause I have 2 little stains on my shirt from it. She is sleepy, but I don't know if she is sleeping as well as when she was on the Valium injection. I'm supposed to give her another dose of the Phenobarbital tonight so I'll try harder to get her to drink it all to the full dosage so she can sleep. And I will of course, also call my vet tomorrow to update her on Loving if they don't already call me.

    And yes, I've been doing some stroke research. There doesn't seem to be as much research on the strokes as the metal poisoning. I found a few sites that weren't aware of bird strokes or didn't provide that as an option for seizures. Others said strokes were common in birds at any age and lovebirds tend to be more prone, also the older the more likely chance of a stroke. The descriptions of the symptoms of stroke lovebirds matches more closely with what Loving is going through.

    And yes, my appetite is absolutely gone now even though I feel like I am starting to get back on track and mentally cope with this better. I'm trying to eat and maintain myself and it helps to have a support group. I have to learn to make this a lifestyle change as it may never be the same, but I think this is making me a stronger person and a better "parront" and potential future parent.

    And yes, my sister has been an amazing support group this whole time. She has done all the vet transportation while I hold Loving on a pillow in the car and she watches Loving in the car after the vet appointments while I shop for he necessities after the appointments, plus she watches Loving when I'm at work. Keeps me updated, helps feed her when I'm gone. I don't know what I would have done without her. I definitely felt overwhelmed many a time, but she kept a clear head and helped guide me through.

    I also did try feeding her a few times. It's messy kind of like the peanut butter, but she does eat more of it since it is more liquidy. It worries me when it gets all over the place though, cause I wonder how much she missed of the full dose. It especially worries me with the medicine. I don't know if you guys have any advice if you're more experienced on hand feeding?


    Update:

    The new vet called me this morning to check on how Loving was doing and I took this opportunity to get the medications straightened out. She is taking Phenobarbital (0.04ml by mouth) twice a day for the rest of her life. The Phenobarbital is supposed to treat her seizures and make her sleepy. The other medication is Prednisolone (0.05ml by mouth) twice a day for 5 days and then once a day for 5 days. The Prednisolone is supposed to be like a steroid and help treat inflammation and swelling of a potential tumor and the stroke. I have to wait till 24 hours after she got her Valium shot to give her the Prednisolone. I already gave her the Phenobarbital with her breakfast this morning. I'm not the best at hand feeding. It's messy, lots gets on her beak and feathers, my fingers and my clothes. I told the vet I was worried about not giving her her full dose of medicine cause some may spill. She said so long as I squeeze the drops between her two beaks from the left she should lick it/ drink it. Even so I did miss some of the Phenobarbital, I can tell cause I have two little stains on my shirt from it. I saw some drip from her beak and I saw her lick it, but I'm not sure how much she got. She is still a little sleepy. Not as much as with the Valium. Her twitching is not nearly as bad as the weekend though it's still there. And she seems to be twitching a little more now than with the Valium last night which makes me worried that I may not have given her enough. Her second dosage of Phenobarbital will be tonight so I'm going to try extra hard to try to get her to drink all of it (maybe have my sister help me hold her cause she flails a lot).

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