Bad Medicine

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My parrot’s still not doing very well. At three o’clock yesterday morning, he shot out of his bed into the bathroom, and bled huge amounts down the wall from the wound under one of his wings. Not a sight to see. I packed his side with wound powder to staunch the flow. Birds can bleed to death very quickly, and even if all you have is corn flour to put on an injury or bleeding sore, you have to stop it immediately. I spent the rest of the day making sure he didn’t pick himself open, getting him to eat, and disinfecting his entire sleeping area again. The same thing happened this morning, with less blood, but still deeply terrifying.

I originally thought that this was being caused by some sort of feather mite, but now I’m certain that he has a parasite called Giardia. It’s a really evil thing. I’ve looked at pictures, and researched his symptoms. They’re pretty classic, and he has the full set. He’s been pulling the feathers out from the inside of his legs, and from his back and under his wings because of the itching brought on by this, to the point where he’s now had sores there for a couple weeks – one in each wing pit. The problem is that the vet only had one drug called Flagyl (metronidazole) to treat him with. I’ve got it, but I’m terrified to give it to him. From what I’ve found out, it’s not very effective. The Giardia either comes back or it doesn’t kill the parasite in the first place, and the side effects are horrendous. From the sounds of things, it’s likely to do just as much, if not more harm than this particular bug does. I won’t generally give anything to my animals that I wouldn’t be prepared to take myself, so I’ve been treating him with herbs that are known to be anti-parasitic, and antibiotics to stop infection.

I’ve spent all my online time looking at avian websites for advice, and apart from one drug that I’m trying my best to lay my hands on as quickly as I can (it seems to be only available in Germany), I’m not seeing any other solutions. As this parasite is highly contagious between birds, I’m going to treat all of the horde just as soon as I get it. But everyone’s advising quite strongly against the medicine that I have, and I’m at my wits end. Do I treat him as best as I can, and wait till I get the one medication that’s safe, or do I take the chance of liver failure, not actually curing the bird, and all sorts of other really life-threatening side effects, and give him what I’ve got now? It’s not an easy decision to make when either one of them could be the wrong one.

I must say though, apart from some pictures of birds in conditions that made me wonder how anyone could be so uncaring as to let them get that far, I was really heartened by how much most people love their feathered friends. Our pets worm their way into our hearts with their unconditional love. They’re totally dependent on us, which makes most of us fiercely protective of them, and the thought of losing them not something we want to contemplate, even though at some point it’s inevitable. We just have to make sure that while they’re with us, they get the best care we can give them so they can be, at the very least, as happy as they would be flying free.

Till next time friends.

16 thoughts on “Bad Medicine

    LucyPireel said:
    June 24, 2013 at 9:26 am

    Oh Jo! My dearie, how awful to hear about Beep Beep’s illness. You take good care of him and do what your gut tells you, it’s mostly right.
    I’m sure you’re doing the best you can in giving him what he needs.

    Like

      jorobinson176 responded:
      June 28, 2013 at 11:32 am

      I went the chemical route this time – no choice really. But it’s working! Thank you for still being my friend, and not booting me out the window for always being late with everything my lovely Lucy dear. I’m catching up with the blogs now…. zooming…. sort of 😀 xxxx

      Like

        LucyPireel said:
        June 28, 2013 at 11:59 am

        I will never boot you out my Dearie! You are one of the peeps who are always there, even when she has failing interweb and sick ones to take care off (of far greater importance than virtual life) 🙂
        xoxo Don’t zoom to fast or you might miss something.

        Like

          jorobinson176 responded:
          June 29, 2013 at 1:11 pm

          I really appreciate that my friend. I do feel guilty getting so far behind, but you, and some other lovely friends out there make it all better. I’m zooming like a super charged snail today 😀

          Like

    ihidemychocolate said:
    June 24, 2013 at 11:38 am

    Oh I am so sad! All my thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Sally
    Sent from my iPhone

    Like

      jorobinson176 responded:
      June 28, 2013 at 11:27 am

      Thanks so much Sally. It’s funny how much love these little feathered guys bring out in us isn’t it? I’ve got piles of new (and safe) medications now, and he’s much better. I can see why that parasite developed resistance to that drug though – it made him so ill I would have stopped giving it to him if I didn’t believe the alternative was worse. He’s starving now, and munching everything in sight! I really appreciate your kindness. Thank you. xxx

      Like

    cicampbell2013 said:
    June 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Nightmare, Jo! Go with your gut feeling. Sounds like it’s a good guide.
    Thinking of you x

    Like

      jorobinson176 responded:
      June 28, 2013 at 11:23 am

      Thanks so much Christine. It’s been really rough, but I gave him the medicine after that, because he just suddenly looked like he was about to expire. He’s still a bit picky, but the stuff is really working. I’ll keep an eye on him again tonight, but his wounds are healing nicely. Thanks for thinking of me. It feels lovely to have such an amazingly cool friend. xxx

      Like

    Marian Allen said:
    June 24, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    I just wrote a story for you!
    Sure Thing

    Like

    Patinspire said:
    June 26, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    Sending love and hugs your way my friend!

    Like

      jorobinson176 responded:
      June 28, 2013 at 11:02 am

      Hi there gorgeous Pat! We’ve been missing each other lately. Thank you so much for your love and hugs. It’s so fantastic knowing that there are people like you in the world, and it’s a blessing to call you friend. 🙂 xx

      Like

        Patinspire said:
        June 28, 2013 at 11:06 am

        I think that you are pretty awesome yourself 🙂 🙂 I am just happy that we became friends. I have been spending time with my mom and family which takes me away from blogging/writing but I am holding on to what is important making sure that I don’t miss out on an inch of the precious moments. Thanks Jo and have a great weekend :0 🙂

        Like

          jorobinson176 responded:
          June 28, 2013 at 11:12 am

          Is it weekend? LOL – I’ve lost track. 😀 You’re right about not missing the precious times. Time zooms by sometimes doing things that aren’t really important when you get down to it. Thank you my friend. You enjoy every second with your loved guys. 😀 xxx

          Like

    ihidemychocolate said:
    June 27, 2013 at 1:49 am

    I am concerned that you are not posting. Sending healing thoughts.

    Like

      jorobinson176 responded:
      June 28, 2013 at 11:00 am

      You are so lovely – thank you! I’m shocked at how fast he got so sick, and how really limp he was for days. He nearly bled out a time or two, but now he’s on the mend! I could do with about two weeks sleep truthfully, but I’m itching to jump back in to work. xx

      Like

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