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Help - It this normal? (Loss of Appetite from Wing-Trim)

Heidi

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Loss of Appetite from Wing-Trim ??!!?!

After a long time of debating pros & cons of flighted feathers vs. trimmed wings, I trimmed my Senegal parrot’s wings. She was used to being able to fly anywhere she wanted. I made this choice because I moved to a new studio apartment that is very small & I couldn’t let her outside anymore like I did at my last house. She used to take off like lightning and fly around in circles and hang out in the trees and then come home, but not trained-just on her terms. Now I feel bad because she’s been stuck inside a tiny studio now for 9 months and I can never take her anywhere with me because she isn’t flight trained and refuses to wear a harness. If she would get startled, she’d take off almost crashing into my walls & windows, so I got really scared she was going to hurt herself. Now that I trimmed her wings she can come outside and be with me more. But I did this only 1.5 days ago. She seems to understand what happened and is still alert and snuggly with me. She has tried several times to fly but sort of crash lands trying to get to her usual spots, but can’t make it. I’m so sad about this but I feel like it will overall make her life better-she could be with me more & come places with me now, not sitting her in cage alone.

.....buuuut now she’s not eating as much food as she usually does. Do you think this is ”normal” and she is depressed or in shock from her wings being trimmed? I’m so worried I messed up. It hasn’t been long enough for her to understand the benefits of this decision. I really hope she starts eating more and this is her normal response from the stress of a big change, and will go back to her normal excitement for eating.

Do you think this is what her loss of appetite could be from?? (Nothing else in her life has changed.)
 
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Mizzely

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Let's pretend you are a runner and then one day your shoelaces get tied together.. and they will be tied together for the foreseeable future. You went from long strides to a 12 inch gait.

That's similar to what your bird is going through. They absolutely can get depressed and lose confidence in themselves because they can no longer do the things they used to b be able to, and they cannot understand why. It's scary!

They also can injure themselves if the clip is too severe. They should be able to still flutter across a room, just not get height. If she's dropping like a rock, she can break her keel bone.

Clipping also does not protect them from flying away, sadly. My mother in law lost a cockatiel who was clipped, and dozens of lost bird ads in the spring feature birds with clipped feathers.
 

Heidi

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I know:( I’m fully aware her life has drastically changed... it’s just weird that only her eating pattern is different. She’s normal acting in every other way...still her cute-silly-happy-alert-seeming-self....:huh:
 

Heidi

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I didn’t clip too much, she doesn’t drop - she flaps & glides, but the problem is she thinks she can make it somewhere but really can’t.
 

Lady Jane

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Birds going through the trauma of having flight feathers cut are both emotionally and physically effected until the 7 or 8 month regrowth. I feel bad for your bird. She is not as active so of course she is not as hungry. She may even drop some weight.
Perhaps you can offer her something different in the way of foods.
 

MommyBird

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Flying is the very best thing for their health. It burns a lot of energy so if she doesn't fly she will get fat if she eats the same amount as she used to.
She's probably depressed too.
and absolutely do NOT think she cannot fly outside beyond your reach. She must still be in a travel cage or harness.
 

Mizzely

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The less active thing equaling less food makes sense too!
 

Heidi

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Flying is the very best thing for their health. It burns a lot of energy so if she doesn't fly she will get fat if she eats the same amount as she used to.
She hasn’t flown the semi-far distances in over 9 months. She’s only flown around my tiny apartment since then but not that much. Just to my head, to her stand, here and there. So her activity level is same. I’m having her fly to the bed throughout the day to show her her capability now.

Well she ate some food and ! grinding her beak ! , taking a nap now. Yaaaaay.
 

Heidi

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She is not as active so of course she is not as hungry. She may even drop some weight.

She’s had the same activity level. She only flew around my tiny apartment, but not that much. Just to my head, to her stand, here and there. So her activity level is same. I’m having her fly to the bed throughout the day to show her her capability now.

Well she ate some food and ! grinding her beak ! , taking a nap now. Yaaaaay.
 

Clementé19

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I actually had a similar experience.. first time we had Clementé clipped he seemed distraught... it’s like we took away his freedom. When he first started to get height you could tell how proud he was of himself.. but because of certain reasons we decided to trim.. but he lost the height in his flight... they have since grown back and I think because of the guilt after clipping the first time I am hesitant to clip again... I’m new at this so don’t laugh if this is a stupid question.. but can I have them clipped a smaller amount so he can still fly a bit but not to the point where he can hurt or himself or cause significant damage to himself. Thanks all!
 

Heidi

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I think it’s a long trial and error process to find the exact amount to trim!!! Maybe google how to slightly trim wings (or similar wording)? Hugz ended up great a couple days after I posted this. I think it’s very shocking to a bird to do it to but they are good at adapting. She has learned how far she can fly now. But it was a scary few week(s) for her to learn her new limited range. She is very happy now. She comes places with me now and loves it. I’m not sure what I’ll do either once they grow out.
 

Zara

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