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[UPDATE] Cockatiel with Shortness of Breath / Wet Exhales


Strolling the yard
Hello -

I posted earlier about this - but my cockatiel has been experiencing these wet sneezes that look like this:

Cockatiel shortness of breath

He was cultured and the results showed Staph Borealis. I took him to an Avian Vet and he was prescribed Trimeth-Sulfa for 2 weeks. He finished the course 5 days ago and his symptoms have greatly improved. He is still having episodes so they are not completely resolved - but they are much less in duration and much less frequent.

I took him for another checkup yesterday and the Vet said that because he's greatly improved, then there is no need for another culture and let's wait to see how he progresses. She said that sometimes symptoms can be residual and not resolve right away after an antibiotic course is completed - like a residual cough in humans. So the plan is to watch him for 2 weeks and see if his symptoms disappear completely or not.

My question is - is this a normal course of action? Since symptoms haven't completely gone away (even if completely improved) - doesn't he need another course to make sure the bug is completely dead? Or is it true that sometimes there are residual symptoms?

I do trust my avian vet - but I'm a pharmacist and do question and double check sometimes. I love my baby and really want him to get better.

Please let me know your thoughts. Thanks so much!


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This is difficult to answer, with variables. Antibiotics aren't benign, there can be many side effects. But you are a pharmacist! So you already know all of that .

You can go with your veterinarian advice, and if there is deterioration, you can go back before the 2 weeks .

Have a digital scale, weigh and log daily, or every other day. Take a short video clip daily of episodes. Make notes on duration and frequency. This gives you something to compare to.

And I always feel supportive warmth is important. As much nutritious food as possible, and extra calories are often needed with illness or injuries