• Welcome to Avian Avenue! To view our forum with less advertisments please register with us.
    Memberships are free and it will just take a moment. Click here

OVERNIGHT Feather Plucking + Travel Issues

egg

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
7/27/17
Messages
19
Location
California
Real Name
me
Hey Everyone! :sun:

Today I came home to my sunny, Quinn, with her feathers from her chest to her feet plucked CLEAN! :cry: I'm so confused, and for the 4 years she's lived in my home this was never a problem. I know the usual causes of feather plucking, so here are my candidate choices:

1) I introduced the Ecotrition Vita-Sol vitamins into her water a few days prior, so its possible this could be it.
2) I noticed a pile of feathers where the little mirror in her cage was; I was thinking she stares at it and plucks. It has been in her cage for about 2 years now, but after some mirror research I deemed that this could be the possible issue.
3) Weather? It's SoCal winter right now, so it's a little chilly and dry. I could amp up the heater a bit higher and offer her the spray bottle.
4) More attention? Our routine hasn't changed at all.. usually we play for a few hours every other day.
5) Unidentifiable medical condition?
6) The cat? Although this one is more unlikely because he has little to no interest in the bird, they rarely interact, and he's been in the house for about a year and a half now.

This is very baffling to me considering that we haven't had a change in an environment recently.

Also, I planned on taking her to the vet immediately, but considering how stressed she gets in travel, it worries me. She has never reacted like this to prior vet visits. In between me putting Quinn in her travel cage/cardboard box, this is the series of events that fold out:
-I lure her into her container
-In the car she has a strange reaction; her wings spread out, her eyes blink rapidly, and she makes a weird squeaking noise.
- Suddenly she'll fall into a somewhat sedated state, like she's about to take a nap.
-Then.. BAM! She falls into panic mode and thrashes about flapping all over the container/box, hitting the walls of the cage/box. Considering that stress is the #1 killer for birds, I took her back inside IMMEDIATELY and put her back in her cage to calm down... she starts to fear me during this stage, too.


Here is my big question: What do YOU guys think the cause of feather plucking is, and what do you guys do when you take your feathered buddies to the vet?! :what:
 

Shelli

Strolling the yard
Joined
1/2/19
Messages
80
Real Name
Shelly
I am so sorry you are having this issue. Feather plucking is so frustrating. Years ago when I had a CAG, I would cover his cage while traveling, he was more comfortable with that.

As far as the plucking goes, there are so many reasons for it. I would probably get rid of the mirror and make sure not to handle her in anyway way that might cause frustration like under the wings and such. You are very correct that a full workup is in order.

I am sure others will have some great suggestions for you.
 

Davi

Rollerblading along the road
Avenue Concierge
Joined
12/12/17
Messages
1,519
Location
Pittsburgh, PA
Real Name
Davi
I am so sorry to hear :( The important thing is to make sure she is ok, so I agree that covering the cage while traveling could help (not to the point of darkness, but just so she can't see things moving outside, but light goes through). Hopefully others with more experience with feather plucking birds will be able to help. Hang in there and hope Quinn is feeling better (also, to the extent possible, try not to show any signs of frustration or stress to her, as this can compound the issue).
 

JLcribber

@cockatoojohn
Vendor
Avenue Veteran
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Shutterbugs' Best
Avenue Concierge
Joined
10/16/09
Messages
22,583
Location
Alberta, Canada
Real Name
John
1. 2 . 5 and 6 are all possible causes. A "sudden" change in behaviour usually points to something medical.

What you described about putting her in a box are the symptoms of a seizure. Do you have a small travel cage that is not a "box"? She needs a medical workup.
 

webchirp

Joyriding the Neighborhood
Avenue Veteran
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
8/2/10
Messages
17,652
Location
Ohio
Real Name
Chandra
What you described about putting her in a box are the symptoms of a seizure. She needs a medical workup.
^ agree or her little heart can't keep up when she is overly excited indicating a heart issue. Plucking could be a symptom of pain as well. Please take her in...can you cover her travel cage so it's completely dark?
 

Kodigirl210

Rollerblading along the road
Joined
10/13/18
Messages
1,403
Location
Cali
I would also line the bottom with towels. If you can arrange to hang towels on the inside of the travel cage that will help if she thrashes around. Make sure there are no dishes and i would probably remove the perch as this adds falling or smashing her wings against the perch once she seizures. She needs to go to the vet. The plucking happened so randomly I’d be concerned there was an underlying issue. Best wishes. :sadhug2:
 

egg

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
7/27/17
Messages
19
Location
California
Real Name
me
Update! 2/26/19

OK so good news, I was able to take her to the vet and they were able to identify that it was an allergic reaction on the more severe side from the vitamins with the vet.

They were able to put a cone on her for now and they gave me a medicinal spray to use for her body; I’m taking her back again next week for a follow up check up. :)

As for the travelling, I think its best she doesnt see her surroundings when going out. The vet on the phone did tell me from what I described that it was a stress seizure. As long as I grabbed her quickly with the towel, block her view, and closed the box immediately, her behavior was perfectly fine. She even started chirping like normal in the container and was okay throughout the trip. Her previous travel cage was pretty small, so now I’m going to invest in a new, larger travel cage.

New questions:
-How do I maintain the cone?
-What are some affordable and spacious travel cages she could use?

(I know in the picture I posted she’s in the bottom of her cage but don’t worry. she usually goes down there to see what I’m doing when I sit at the lower end of the stairs.)

EAE4B3BD-8274-4ECD-98D4-5D5A64B74C2D.png 4E6D2142-2527-44AB-8C2D-989536F9A225.png
 

Kodigirl210

Rollerblading along the road
Joined
10/13/18
Messages
1,403
Location
Cali
I’m really glad the vet was able to give you answers right away that make senses & will help your little girl. I don’t know what to tell you about the cones as my vet said they are very hard to maintain & very easy for fids to grab & destroy. As for a travel cage, one that I currently own and use- I have a Prevue metal cage. I find the wires ones bend too easily and usually you get them too warped to even use when they are shipped tonyou. This cage has gotten a lot more expensive since I bought it but I would still recommend it. It’s a really good cage and is held together with screws at the top. Midwest has a similar cages but it’s held together by pressure alone & it came bent too many times for me to trust it. It is however a lot cheaper than a King’s Travel cage because Kings are made from aluminum about $70 vs $150.Prevue Pet Products Travel Carrier for Birds, Black Amazon.com : Prevue Pet Products Travel Carrier for Birds, Black : Pet Supplies
 
Last edited:

egg

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
7/27/17
Messages
19
Location
California
Real Name
me
New Update 3/2/19

Guys, her follow-up appointment is tomorrow and something new has happened.

All the vets for today are closed so I have to wait; I noticed today while giving her her daily medicinal spray that i noticed she loosened her cone and picked her skin SO much that theres a huge, circular wound just below her head. She’s mutilating her skin, and she’s doing it hard. :,(

I’m so confused as to what switch made her pick her skin and feathers raw in a week... even taking her out of her cage, she still tries to pick.

Help!!!
 

Begone

Joyriding the Neighborhood
Avenue Veteran
Celebirdy of the Month
Avenue Spotlight Award
Shutterbugs' Best
Joined
11/29/12
Messages
15,651
First. Get rid of that mirror.That is a big No No!
And she can be reacting to the spray now. What kind of spray is it? What does it contain?
What is she eating?
Is she normally hormonal this period of the year?
More attention? Our routine hasn't changed at all.. usually we play for a few hours every other day.
What does that mean? She is not out every day?
When I see this pic, I see a bird that wants out. Why is she isn't out when you are home and their?


You can just guess that this started with a reaction from the vitamins you gave her, but I don't think so. And why did you gave her them?
The cat? Although this one is more unlikely because he has little to no interest in the bird, they rarely interact, and he's been in the house for about a year and a half now.
Don't allowed the cat in the same room as your bird.
What do you mean with: "they rarely interact,". You know that birds can be poising from the cats saliva?
 

egg

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
7/27/17
Messages
19
Location
California
Real Name
me
First. Get rid of that mirror.That is a big No No!
And she can be reacting to the spray now. What kind of spray is it? What does it contain?
What is she eating?
Is she normally hormonal this period of the year?

What does that mean? She is not out every day?
When I see this pic, I see a bird that wants out. Why is she isn't out when you are home and their?


You can just guess that this started with a reaction from the vitamins you gave her, but I don't think so. And why did you gave her them?

Don't allowed the cat in the same room as your bird.
What do you mean with: "they rarely interact,". You know that birds can be poising from the cats saliva?
The medicinal spray Douxo Chlorhexidine Micro-emulsion spray.

When I got her, the person taking care of her in the store told me that she doesn’t like too much attention to begin with. On the days I don’t play with her, I leave her cage open and she walks on top to watch what I’m doing.

She eats Kaytee pellets and her diet hasn’t changed, she’s still eating normally.

I’m not sure about her hormonal cycle.

If the cat is the problem, I have no issue giving him away. I have friends to give him to.
 

Begone

Joyriding the Neighborhood
Avenue Veteran
Celebirdy of the Month
Avenue Spotlight Award
Shutterbugs' Best
Joined
11/29/12
Messages
15,651
If the cat is the problem, I have no issue giving him away. I have friends to give him to.
You don't need to give him away. But they should always be separated from each other.
 
Top