High cholesterol in a “senior” Mealy amazon
Posted: 18 August 2007 08:43 AM   [ Ignore ]
Active Participant
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  20
Joined  2007-06-10

I adopted my older “senior psittacine”  Mealy amazon last Dec ‘06 and got her vet checked within 3 days. Her cholesterol was somewhat high then (450) should be 350 says the avian vet. Took her in last week and the cholesterol is up to 800!  She eats fruits, veggies, pellets during the day, and about a half-tablespoonful of an eclectus-type relatively low fat seed mix with only a few sunflower or safflower seeds in it as a treat at night.  Before I got her she was on a junky all “parrot mix” seed diet for years.  Needless to say I was surprised! She gets the exact same food as my eclectus and DYH.  My eclectus has recently tested somewhat higher than the desired cholesterol level too, but he’s not that far off. My eclectus actually eats more than either of my amazons, and he’s the lightest weight of the three!

The vet has prescribed a medication I am to give her a couple of times a day. I am afraid I will turn this loving, never biting gentle giant of a bird into a paranoid biter if I have to force-feed a medication to her willing or not. This happened with a female eclectus I had.  She learned quickly why I was coming for her after about 2 days of force-feeding medication and she became very wary, resentful, and biting. I don’t want that to happen with this Mealy.

Question is, has anyone had results with a specific diet to get an old amazon’s cholesterol under control?

 Signature 

    My 3 feathered buddies…

Profile
 
 
Posted: 19 August 2007 02:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Administrator
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  836
Joined  2007-06-17

I had to treat one of my parrots for a long time, and I experimented a lot to try to avoid force feeding him the medications.
The trick would be to find a soft food that she likes and that she will eat with the medication mixed. But it’s important that she will not waste any and that   she will take the full dosage of the medication.
For example you could try with a small amount of spoon fed baby formula, some low fat yogurt, a little bit of mashed banana, or anything else that she likes and that will not increase her cholesterol. If it will not affect the medication, there are more chances that she will accept these foods if they are warm.
In case this will not work, is there someone other than you that could force feed her the medication?
All best,
Cristiana

 Signature 

Cristiana Senni
World Parrot Trust-Italy

Il World Parrot Trust-Italia su Facebook

Follow the WPT on Twitter

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 03:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
New Participant
Avatar
Rank
Total Posts:  9
Joined  2008-08-23

Amazons do tend to have more problems with cholesterol then some other species.  How much exercise does he get?  This is of vital importance to your bird’s health!  Daily exercise, even if only flapping its wings is often overlooked for our caged pets.

If you have him on a pellet,  I personally would take him off pelleted food and get him on a raw fruit, vegetable, sprouts and grain diet. 

Foods such as

brussels sprouts, spinach, apples, pears, Green plantain, grapefruit, oranges, carrots and prunes can all help lower cholesterol as can some grains such as Barley, Oats and Pearled Barley; as it contains a substance that inhibits the production of cholesterol in the blood has been traced to the non-fibrous part of the grain.

Flax seed in moderation is a good EFA that has been known to help lower cholesterol levels

Cinnamon also reduces cholesterol levels.

Periods of exposure to sunshine will convert the cholesterol to Vit D. 

There should be no need for drugs for you amazon to lower its cholesterol levels until you have changed his diet and started him on an exercise program and some time in the sun daily.  If after all these changes your parrot still does not have lower values and his life is at risk then by all means go the drug route.  However,  Nature’s ways are usually best in the long run.  wink

 Signature 

“One cannot look deeply into the eyes of an animal and not see the same depth, complexity and feeling we humans lay exclusive claim to.”—Unknown

Dr Jeannie Thomason
Veterinary Naturopath

Job 12:7-10

http://www.naturalbirdcare.org
http://aunaturalbirdnotes.blogspot.com/
http://www.drjeannie.com

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 04:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
Active Participant
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  20
Joined  2007-06-10

Thank you for the reply!  (Seems to be a little slow here.)  Since I posted that a year ago her cholesterol has gone down to 236 last time I had it checked, last December. Vet said keep doing what I was doing. I did not get the meds from the vet he wanted me to put her on last year. Fortunately he was out of polycosinal one of the ingredients, and had to order some which gave me time to think about it. I am not so sure the second test I had done that came back over 800 was even accurate, probably should have redone it being so high after the first was only moderately high.  I’ve read of a few way out of whack lab test results that needed to be redone and proved different but I didn’t think about that, probably the vet should have. Anyway she gets one or two drops of flax oil with lignans, maybe some fresh ground flax seed, a drop or two of hemp seed oil, mostly vegs and fruit during the day, and some pellets and seed mix at night, and an apple slice for her late night snack before lights out.

 Signature 

    My 3 feathered buddies…

Profile
 
 
Posted: 23 August 2008 05:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
New Participant
Avatar
Rank
Total Posts:  9
Joined  2008-08-23

Oh wow,  things ARE slow here!  LOL   I just recently joined the forum since I am working from home now and have a little more time to be on the computer,  dummy me,  did not even look at the date. 

I am so glad to hear her levels are more normal now and she is doing well!  AND without the drugs!  Woo Hoo!  wink

Thanks for letting me know.

 Signature 

“One cannot look deeply into the eyes of an animal and not see the same depth, complexity and feeling we humans lay exclusive claim to.”—Unknown

Dr Jeannie Thomason
Veterinary Naturopath

Job 12:7-10

http://www.naturalbirdcare.org
http://aunaturalbirdnotes.blogspot.com/
http://www.drjeannie.com

Profile
 
 
Posted: 31 December 2008 06:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
New Participant
Rank
Total Posts:  2
Joined  2008-12-31

I need some information on a Blue Crowned Mealy Amazon that I got two weeks ago. I’m hoping you can help me since you have a senior bird. The one I have is supposed to be 7-8 years old. He? may be older. My concern was the look of his feet compared to what I’ve seen in pictures of other BC Amazons. His feet have tannish looking scales. Is this normal, an indication of an old bird or some health reason?

Image Attachments
PIC00246.jpg
Profile
 
 
Posted: 11 June 2010 07:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
Active Participant
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  20
Joined  2007-06-10

Hello texas sphinx!  I just got an email notification today June 11 2010 that you had replied to this thread Dec 31, 2008. Can that be right a year and a half ago and just now getting a notification? 

Anyway how is your Mealy doing? The feet do look scaly but a lot of that’s probably normal. My Mealy has the same rough scaly appearance. I have helped it though by giving the bird 2 or 3 drops of Udo’s Oil 3-6-9 blend on her food daily, which is a flax, sesame and sunflower oil mixture. Her feet look much better and softer but it takes time to take effect. My Vet had recommended another oil blend ( OptOmega) but it’s hard to find, you generally have to buy it from a multilevel marketing reseller, and Udo’s Oil is available at most every health food-type store.

 Signature 

    My 3 feathered buddies…

Profile
 
 
Posted: 02 December 2011 08:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
New Participant
Rank
Total Posts:  2
Joined  2008-12-31

His feet got to looking a lot better with a diet change. I believe they were feeding him mostly peanuts and other nuts. It took me over a year to get him to eat pellet food. He does love fresh food. I never could find out how old he was. I bought him from some people that were desperate to get rid of him. They had gotten him from some people they knew that were having financial troubles. Or at least that was the story they gave. I had not planned on keeping him this long, three years now. I would like to find a good home for him. I fear that I do him an injustice by not spending time with him. I’ve never really done much with him. I don’t relish being bitten by that big beak. He will bite in his cage territory. Outside and away from the cage he will step up on an arm with no biting. He is deathly afraid of anything else you try to get him to step up on. Really afraid of sticks/perches and will attack them with his beak, tearing them apart.

Profile