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A very scary lesson to learn - Please, PLEASE do not give your birds happy hut or fibrous toys

bumblebee

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I've just got home from a very scary four day ordeal with Peanut.

On Wednesday morning Peanut was very floofy and lethargic, not eating and vomiting up a clear liquid - classic signs of an internal blockage.



This was him on the morning I knew something was wrong. He doesn't look or act it, but is in a lot of pain in this photo. Another reason it is so important to be vigilant with your birds.

I took him to the vet immediately and the x-rays confirmed my worst fears - he had a dangerously large blockage. According to the vet, this was most likely something that has been building up for a year or more which is why it was so bad. The vet was skeptical of Peanut surviving and advised due to Peanuts size he is unable to operate on him, so his only chance would be to have 3-4 flushes every day with a follow up x-ray to see if he had managed to pass the blockage.



You can see in the first pic how swollen his stomach (the large white area) was and the large bubbles of gas that had formed around the blockage. He was fed a sort of white dye that shows up on x-ray so the vet can see how far it moved along his stomach and bowels - it barely reached his intestines even after a couple of hours which is very bad. After 4 days of flushes you can see that much more of the dye has passed through his system during the second x-ray. His stomach has shrunk and the blockage is thankfully gone. However, his stomach and intensities are now damaged and stretched due to the extent of the blockage which has also made them weak - so he will need a special diet and medicine for the next 8 weeks but the vet is confident he should be back to normal afterwards.

The cause of everything? Peanut had been ingesting his happy hut. I always checked Peanuts happy hut (as well as all his other toys) for any missing bits or threads and it always seemed fine, especially as Peanut rarely actually plays with his toys, I had no reason or evidence to suspect he was eating/chewing his hut.

Poor peanut must've been in a lot of pain for a long time, but only displayed signs when it become life threatening. Please make sure to keep an eye on your birds so you can notice any abnormal behavior and get them to a vet asap - if this experience has shown me anything it is that our birds really are so fragile and the smallest thing can put them in grave danger. Early detection is absolutely key and even a few hours can make all the difference.

I feel absolutely terrible for allowing him to have a happy hut and it almost cost him his sweet little life.

I never knew they were so incredibly dangerous, after reading online it seems there have been hundreds if not thousands of bird deaths relating to either ingesting the fibers or strangling themselves in loose threads. After I went through this ordeal with Peanut and was taking to my friend who's adopted Lory had died last year from an internal blockage which was only half the size of Peanuts - and she had never given him any sort of bed or rope toys. The vet said it would've been floating around his stomach for years, probably from his previous home, until something got caught up in it.

It was absolutely terrifying to go through and I am just extremely thankful that I was actually off work that morning or Peanut might not have even made it through the night. I feel like Peanut is one of the lucky ones and I am so grateful for that but it's horrible to think how many other birds haven't been as fortunete. I cannot believe these horrible things are sold in stores and so often encouraged by breeders and pet stores for new babies - even Peanuts breeder suggested I get him one straight away.

I just wanted to share my experience and hopefully encourage people to remove any happy huts or rope toys they have from their cages so you don't have to go through the same thing and your babies are safe. I know they are cute and your birds love them (Peanut LOVED sleeping and relaxing in his, but it had to go) but it is just not worth it. Don't think, "it won't happen to my bird" - "I check his hut, it's fine" - "she never chews at it" - "I think you're just being dramatic" - because $1,700 worth of vet bills (with more to come) and almost losing my baby, I can tell you - it's just not worth it.

 

camelotshadow

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:omg: so glad peanut is ok!
They do luv the huts but its not worth the risk. I"ve seen them take so much clogged fibers out of birds you think they swallowed a washcloth.
No string for Rio & he enjoys sleeping safely on his platform perch.

Thanks for the warning & Peanut is the cutest bird. So happy you noticed & got him to the vet in time to save him.
:sadhug2:
 

LunaLovebird

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Newbie GCC

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So glad he is recovering!
 

Macaw Lover

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So very scary and glad the stars aligned for you and he is ok now.
 

Hankmacaw

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I'm so glad that Peanut is on his way to recovery. It was super stressful for both of you.

It illustrates one of my standing rules, "just because we (our birds) want something doesn't mean we should have it".
 

fluffypoptarts

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Very glad he's okay. What a terrifying experience. :( We keep telling people on here that they're too dangerous, but only some of them listen. Now your voice can join ours to prevent this from happening to another sweet baby. :bluhug:

I wish they could be banned from stores entirely.
 
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Lady Jane

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I am so glad you were attentive to him and all is well now. If you are on any social media I would be nice if you could post this story for others. I know there are people here who have these fuzzy huts and I hope they read them.
 

Lwalker

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So glad Peanut is going to be alright. Thanks for sharing your story as this is important information.
 

sunnysmom

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How scary. I'm so glad Peanut is ok.
 

Patty Girl

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Yikes!!! Thank you to "Peanuts Mom" I just got my baby Linnie's 10 days ago and YES< I bought a Linnie hut for them. I didn't know they could die from the fibers. You can see from my AVATAR the cute photo of Zoolie looking out. Well, no more, I'm going upstairs and remove the hut right now! My babies are so, so so, sweet and tame and they trust me so much! Thank you for the advise. God Bless....(thank you to my friend LadyJane, Dianne, for showing me this too)
 

rocky'smom

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OMGoodness too scary for words. so glad that you caught this and that he is recovering .
 

Sylvi_

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I'm so glad that he's alright! :hug8:
What a terrifying experience that must have been.
 

Tiel Feathers

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Howvery scary! Thanks for sharing this, and I'm so glad that little Peanut is going to be okay. He's one very lucky, and loved, little birdie!
 

bumblebee

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I just wanted to post an update to this and further stress the importance of not giving birds rope toys or happy huts - Peanut unfortunately passed away March this year.

He was very lethargic and stopped eating again and after a trip to the vet it was diagnosed that the blockage had returned, the vet said they must not have been able to fully clear it initially and small fragment may have remained. He was kept at the vets but became very sick that night and just 48hours later he had to be euthanized. It was very sad and tragic, especially as I had broken up with my long term boyfriend during this time who had taken Peanut so I didn't even get to say goodbye.

So please, again - be very, very careful with fibrous toys or beds and please do not give them to your birds...
 

Ankou

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I'm deeply sorry for your loss, and especially sorry you didn't get a chance to say goodbye. Thank you for sharing your tale though. :sadhug2:

I hope your courage in telling it helps more people to realize these sorts of toys and beds are very unsafe, or at the least not worth the risk. They are prevalent, happy huts are sold in basically every pet store, and so many birds die to these things every year. Not just ingestion but the strings they are sewn together with pose a very real strangulation or loss circulation on limbs risk when shredded if they get wrapped.

I don't blame a single owner for not knowing since they are sold so commonly, it's really sad and I'm so sorry you weren't given a second chance. :sad1:
 

Dartman

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I'm sorry you lost him after it seemed everything was OK but your posts will help save other birds:sadhug:
 

Linearis

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That's horrible... x.x I am always surprised when I see a -seemingly- good store carry happy huts and stuff like that... My grandma's cockatiel has rope perches so it makes me wonder (vet recommended it...). I wonder if yearly xrays would be good to make sure nothing is getting ingested and causing blockage. I also wonder this for my parrotlet because although she has nothing made out of rope or cloth in her cage (I use leather to hold toys up, or paper rope, hopefully those two are safe...) but she loves to chew on my shirts. :/ I don't wear fluffy shirts when I take her out, just normal t-shirts mostly but I still wonder because she really loves putting the fabric in her mouth and chewing it. But I need to wear shirts haha so not sure what to do about that...
 
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