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My parakeet seems to be gagging herself and vomiting. She positions herself under her perch, one foot on the bottom of the cage, one on the perch and she sticks one 'toe' down her throat until gooey half digested food strings out of her mouth. Has anyone else experienced this?
Deb from Kauai, HI
Chickens do this when they need to eat pebbles or calcium. Do parakeets have to eat something like that as well to help break down their food??
A bulimic parakeet, now I've heard everything! Seriously though, sounds kind of like the behavior when cats eat grass. But I'd Google or call the vet. Hope she feels better soon.
I'm not sure, but don't they regurgitate their food to feed their babies? Could she be having a false pregnancy?
This person needs to have gravel in the bird's cage to help the bird be able to digest her/his food. You can go to any pet shop and ask them what they have...Good Luck.....
Thanks for the feedback...especially the bulimic parakeet bit! LOL
It is really the strangest thing. I have googled like crazy getting all kinds of possibilities...but nothing that fits this picture exactly. We live on Kauai and there are no avian vets here.
Your parakeet is showing signs of love. They do regurgitate or (gurge) to show affection. That is how they feed their young and will even feed one another. I've seen a bird nurse a mate back to health by feeding. We run a rescue for domestic and exotic birds. We have birds that try to 'feed' us. As disgusting as it sounds, it's the ultimate sign of love for them. ha ha Diane http://www.LaziBirds.com
Is it normal for the parakeet to use it's toe/foot to gag itself? She does it repeatedly throughout the day.
Parakeets need to eat gritty stuff to "chew" their food. Do you have that in the cage?
Yes, we have grit...however we hadn't been using it for awhile because she seemed to use it only as confetti and never actually ingested any of it. When we'd put it in the cage she would have all of it dumped out within one minute! It did occur to me that this may help so we put some in this morning and she devoured it! Obviously she needed that!
Also we noticed that she was trying to 'feed' her little toy parakeet last night and this morning and was using completely different 'language' with the toy than usual.
Parakeets do NOT need grit. Pet stores will sell it to you but it can actually cause health problems. We have 160 birds here at the rescue and only TWO of them are given grit (gravel). They are doves and should have it. Diane Lazicki's Bird House & Rescue, Inc.
When we had a parakeet when I was a kid we put the grit in the bottom of the cage. We had that bird for a long time so I'm pretty sure the grit didn't cause any health problems...
Aloha Guys, you've given me great feedback so far...
It's been 3 full weeks of this gagging/gurging behavior and it just continues! She's eating (although some days it seems like her appetite is less than normal); she's drinking her average amount of water. She's showing absolutely no other signs of being or looking sick.
Deb from Kauai
Gagging and regurgitating can be a sign of an impacted crop or a love offering. This is the time of year for them to be hormonal so I would bet she is giving you love offerings but to be safe it wouldn't hurt to consult an avian vet.
Your parakeet may have something stuck in her throat and she is trying to get it out, either that or her throat may be itchy and she is trying to scratch it. Take her to the veterinarian as soon as you can, because she could accidentally hurt herself.
I don't know what to tell you but I do know that parakeets DO NOT need grit to digest their food there are some birds that do need grit but parakeets are not one of them. I think that you need to take your bird to the vet ASAP to make sure nothing is wrong. Other than that if everything is healthy, they do that as a sign of affection and it is kinda like a love offering good luck.
My female parakeet started kicking the food out of the container just because. I got them millet and she just destroyed the whole thing. What could she be trying to say?
It may just be her style of eating. I have known some pretty messy birds. Be sure she has an enriched environment, plenty of toys, room to exercise, an interesting view, maybe a buddy.
I have a parakeet that just recently started acting funny... climbing and clinging to the side walls of the cage and the top of the cage, picking at it's back side like there's no tomorrow. It sometimes seems hyper. It's feathers are a little ruffled, but it's been eating like crazy and drinking like crazy. It doesn't seem to be pooping as much as it should... Any ideas?
Only1 from Rochester, NY
GET IT TO A VET, IT COULD BE SERIOUS!!!
My friend tried to fix her bird alone and it died
so go to a vet or at least call a vet or 24 hour
animal hospital for tips or idea of what it could be.
You did not say if your bird is a male or female, if it is a female she could be egg bound, Please take her to a vet a s a p
Thanks everyone, I brought him to a vet, said everything appeared to be OK except he needs iodine... seems he has a goiter because he doesn't eat his veggies like he should. Also, I found out that parakeets can act funny during or after molting and if their wings aren't clipped, they can suddenly act as if they're the boss.
Is your bird molting or recently molted? Picking at it's butt can just be it's coating it's feathers. Right at the base of their body above the tail they have an oil gland. They use this oil to coat their feathers.
If it's picking closer to it's cloaca (vent) it could be a more serious problem like egg binding which someone already mentioned.
Our 2 year old, male parakeet has been holding his wings slightly away from his body. It looks like he's warm, but the house is 75 degrees. Vet states that all looks okay. How can we tell if he has a heart ailment? What else might be causing him to do this? We are very worried.
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