Preventing diseases

Besides a good cage, toys and healthy meals there are certain other measures that you should take, and some things to watch for  in order to keep your parrot healthy and happy.

Besides an overall check-up when you purchase your parrot friend, your parrot needs a yearly check-up at the vet, preferable an avian vet as most vets specialize in animals such as dogs and cats as they are more common. A yearly check-up is necessary to spot latent problems. You might prevent your bird getting sick.
It is also important that you have an avian vet who knows your parrot, so there for I recommend not going to different vets all the time: Choose one good vet in order the vet become familiar with your parrot and its medical history.
This is handy in case your parrot faces medical problems. Your own vet can quickly exclude some things as it KNOWS its medical history, he knows that your parrot has undergone certain health tests.

Clipping your parrot's wings. More information about clipping can be found on the Clipping page. Note that if you've never clipped a parrot before or have never seen anyone do this, you should leave this work to an avian vet. You might clip into your parrot's blood feather which is really painful for your companion and is also dangerous.

Some parrots need a nail trim from time to time as there nails become to long, which makes it difficult for them to sit on their perch or climb in their cage. I suggest you don't clip bird's nails as with some parrots you cannot see where the vein runs. I strongly recommend nail polishing as this is less drastic. In case you might want to have your parrot's nails clipped I suggest you see an avian vet.
You can also consider a cement perch. If you place this perch higher than the other perches your parrot is more likely to sit on his cement perch. Also see the Perches page.

As weight drops may indicate illness in your parrot, I suggest you buy an accurate scale to weigh your parrot regularly. I weigh my parrots once a week, sometimes even more often. Parrots can loose weight very quickly so there for regular weighing is not a luxury! Usually, the first sign of illness that can be noticed is weight loss. Parrots are masters in disguising illnesses; they won't show you there is something wrong with them till it is almost too late.

Some people stress that parrots need vitamin supplements in order to stay healthy. My opinion is that, if you supply your parrot a well balanced meal, you shouldn't need these vitamin supplements. It is your duty to provide your parrot companion a healthy meal so don't choose the seemingly easy way of a poor diet enriched with vitamin supplements. Seemingly because these vitamin supplement are hard to dose: It is very hard to find out how much of the vitamins you supply will actually be ingested. Besides, some vitamins are only 'active' for a certain amount of time (Some can't even be dissolved in water!). They must be ingested very quickly after giving it to your parrot else they will quickly decrease in effectiveness. With trying to have your parrot ingested sufficient vitamins, you might add too much of the vitamin supplement causing vitamin overdoses.
This may sound funny to you, but this surely isn't beneficial to your parrot's health!

Keep your parrot's living quarters and toys clean! That includes a regular thorough cage cleaning, removing any fresh wasted foods before they'll decay, removing feces etc.. With this you can easily prevent any fungi to grow and thus prevent any infections in your bird.
With this birds need fresh air, so please don't smoke around them or do other things that produce toxic fumes. See also the Hazard page for this topic.
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