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Suggestions for bent posture sun conure

PetFoster

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Julie
I am very new to this site, though I have found some great info here just reading through posts! Please bear with me, as this is a complicated situation. I am fostering a sun conure (and his cage mate, a Senegal) for my local shelter, but because there is a court case pending, I can not share pictures or specific details about my location. The shelter vets, bless their hearts, do not see birds very often, and are not entirely well-versed on their issues. Years ago, I had a perfect lory, but quickly discovered that there are not really any vets in my area that know birds; I had to take him to a teaching hospital three hours away for care, and the situation has not changed much (which is why I haven't had any birds since). The shelter vets said they suspected he was self-mutilating his tail feathers and feet, as the feathers looked over groomed (to them) and he is missing some nails/toes. When I got him home and observed him over a couple of days, this is what I think: I have not seen him self-mutilate or over-groom; I think his tail feathers look ragged because he keeps them tucked up under him (or forward, like a c shape?) and is defecating on them; I suspect some damage may be due to his cage mate (my daughter witnessed the conure on the bottom of the cage with the Senegal bent over him, and I have witnessed the Senegal chase him around the cage), or even from being in an improper cage in his previous life. The vets at the shelter took some rads today and said he might have spinal trauma, but I think they are waiting to do more extensive work until the shelter has full ownership of him. They said they did not witness any aggression, so they sent them back to me as before (though when I was there, the birds were in a tiny office all alone for at least a couple hours). I am giving him meloxicam 2/day for pain, and I got him a little fuzzy tent (open on two sides) which he sleeps in at night. He can not perch very well, and doesn't perch at all when his cage mate is present. Does anyone have any suggestions that I could implement that would help while we "wait"? I am going to try to adopt them once custody is determined so I can get him some more professional help (i.e., avian specialist), and I would love to get him a separate cage, but I hate to buy one if I have to send him back in a week or two. Also, any other thoughts on why he might have the bent posture, other than spinal issues? Could it be abdominal or digestive problems (I doubt the latter, as he eats and his waste is "appropriate in appearance). Thank you and sorry for the long post!
 

expressmailtome

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Bump.
 

Ripshod

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First thing is to seperate them, he's clearly being beaten up by the sennie. The tail forward thing tells me he is likely trying to protect it, at least watch it and keep it away from the sennie.
I can't imagine the mental torment he's going through right now.
 

MiniMacaw

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I agree that he needs his own cage today. Even if it’s a small, temporary one, I think he needs a safe space of his own where he can allow himself to relax enough to properly perch and heal.
 

PetFoster

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Thank you, first responders! :) I have them separated, and despite the description of “bonded pair”, they seem to be doing fine individually. In fact, aside from chasing and attacks, not much of their behavior has changed. Mr. Sunny is still clinging to the side of the cage quite a bit, and is fairly fearful.

My instincts tell me to spend lots of time in the room with him, doing my own things, and only reaching in the cage to clean or offer fresh food/water/treats for a few more days. He takes his medicine well through the side of the cage with a syringe. I sense I should wait to try and get him out of the cage for another day or two, though, until the change of being alone has settled out. I know it will stress him somewhat to get him out of the cage, but once he is out, he has been relaxed and content when he is close to me.

thoughts? Am I getting this completely wrong? :unsure:
 

PetFoster

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Your instincts are good. But when the time comes don't take him out, leave his cage door open and let him come out in his own time.
Good thought -- thank you! I guess I was thinking that he might not be able to come out on his own, as his feet are disfigured and he is missing a few toes/nails. But he does climb around his cage by clinging to the side, so theoretically he could do that all the way to the outside of his cage, too. He sits next to the cage bars that are closest to me, and I have had a meal and snacks next to him, so I offered him a few bites (banana, strawberry), but he quickly moved away as soon as he saw my fingers coming closer to the outside of the cage. I hope with time, he will start to build trust with me. Any other ideas are very welcome! :lbpied2:
 

Sunni Tiel

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I'm sure they're so much happier being seperated.

Watch out for that snuggle hut, they can be dangerous with loose threads and hormones. A better option might be a platform perch covered in vet wrap.

The back problems could be from a cage too small, if he was bent over all the time. Make sure he has lots of room.
 

PetFoster

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I'm sure they're so much happier being seperated.

Watch out for that snuggle hut, they can be dangerous with loose threads and hormones. A better option might be a platform perch covered in vet wrap.

The back problems could be from a cage too small, if he was bent over all the time. Make sure he has lots of room.
Yes, his cage is quite large now -- 34"H x 33"W x 22"D. And I did read several posts about the dangers of the snuggle hut. I will watch for it, and I plan to get a platform perch and wrap soon! I have not caught him using it since his cage mate was moved, so that is probably something he would not miss.
 
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