Health & wellbeing for your parrot

Bucktons, committed to cleanliness, consistency and quality.

There may be very few signs to indicate that your pet bird is feeling unwell. They are great at hiding it, as it is their natural instinct so they don’t look vulnerable in the wild. Unfortunately this means birds can actually be more unwell than the signs they show.

With a high quality, varied diet and well maintained environment your pet bird should be at its healthy best. Here are a few signs, which may be visible, to help guide you on your pet bird’s health and wellbeing.

Happy and healthy signs from your bird

  • Eyes should be bright and alert.
  • Nostrils should be clear and dry.
  • Beak should be strong with no overgrowth, fractures or asymmetry.
  • Cere colour should be bright and there should be no overgrowth.
  • Inside mouth should look clean, with no noxious smell.
  • Feet should be moving freely on both legs, with no nail overgrowth, missing toes, excessive build-up of faeces. Base of feet have small ridges and no evidence of pododermatitis.
  • Try checking their grip by giving them a finger to stand on.
  • Feathers should appear shiny, smooth, vibrant, full feathers.
  • Check for ectoparasites, stress lines on feathers, abnormal growth, broken feathers, pin feathers, feather plucking and feathers stuck in a moult.
  • Maintaining a healthy weight. It is a good idea to train your bird to be weighed once a week (see notes below on weighing your bird).
  • Eating recommended food amounts regularly (twice a day).
  • Attentive and engaging.

Signs to look out for

Once you can see signs of illness or disease, it often means that the bird has already been ill for a while, and quick medical attentionis always important.

Things to look out for include:

  • Subdued and not interacting as they would normally
  • Laboured breathing
  • Changes in feather – fluffed, dull, matted or missing feathers
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of interest in food and toys
  • Sitting at the bottom of the cage
  • Change in dropping consistency or colour

Birds health can change with very little notice or reason, it’s ideal to regularly check your bird for any changes. If your bird is showing any of the above symptoms, we’d recommend seeking advice from your local avian vet, to ensure your bird is happy and healthy.

Weighing your bird

It is a good idea to weigh your bird regularly to ensure that it is neither losing weight, possibly due to illness, or gaining too much weight and becoming obese.

Fortunately larger birds like the parrots can be trained to stand on an artificial perch on a set of scales, so are easy to weigh regularly.

« Back to Bucktons parrot care