Raising a parrot is one of the most rewarding and monumental tasks a person can do.
As simple and straightforward it might seem to adopt and raise a parrot, there’s a lot that needs to be looked at for every person before they dive deep into the subject.
Still, many people are interested in adopting a parrot and adding a fun little creature to their life that’s more unique than the traditional route of adopting a cat or dog.
However, as you can imagine, a few areas a person should be aware of while raising a parrot should be a parrot’s possibility of getting sick.
Whether you’re aware of it or not, parrots tend to have many health issues throughout their life, with some experiencing significantly more problems than others.
If these specific health issues aren’t addressed right away, the severity of the case can dramatically become worst as time goes on.
As a result, it’s always ideal for people to do whatever they can to make sure their parrot is in the best possible health.
Besides healthy eating and a perfect lifestyle, there are plenty of signs to be aware of that are examples of a parrot being potentially sick.
Nevertheless, down below, we’re going to discuss 25 signs a parrot is sick, all of which should be reconciled whenever you think your parrot is acting odd.
Keep in mind, these signs aren’t for-sure marks that your parrot is sick, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
- 1 They’re Vomiting
- 2 They’re going to the bathroom too much
- 3 They’re not going to the bathroom
- 4 They’re not eating
- 5 They’re eating too much
- 6 They’re being quiet
- 7 They’re being overly loud
- 8 They’re being aggressive
- 9 They’re huddled
- 10 They’re sitting low on the perch
- 11 They’re sitting on the bottom of the cage
- 12 They’re hanging on the cage with their beak instead of sitting on the perch
- 13 Their head is tucked under their wing
- 14 They have ruffled feathers consistently
- 15 They’re weak
- 16 They have bad balance and awkwardness
- 17 Lumps or swelled body
- 18 They’re picking at their feathers
- 19 They’re trembling
- 20 They have dull eyes and a weakened color
- 21 They keep walking in circles
- 22 They have an unusual smell
- 23 They’re repeatedly inactive
- 24 They have a change in personality
- 25 They collapse
Whenever someone brings up sickness in humanity, generally vomiting is the first thing a person thinks of when severely sick.
Whether a person is a kid or an adult, vomiting is never a good thing, regardless if it’s from bad food or alcohol.
With this in mind, vomiting is obviously not ideal for parrots to experience either.
Often, parrots puke when they eat something that doesn’t agree with their digestive system.
Sometimes they’ll puke and be fine, whereas other times, it might be a more severe case where they ate something they’re allergic to.
Either way, make sure you get them to an animal hospital or their vet right away.
They’re going to the bathroom too much
Right next to the gloomy reality associated with vomiting comes the commonality of going to the bathroom too much.
Generally speaking, we all have an idea of what a healthy bowel system is like, which can be applied to parrots.
If you find your parrot having accidents all the time and going way more than they should, it could be a sign of a digestive-system infection, or they ate something that didn’t agree with them.
As long as they seem okay, it might just have to pass through, but don’t be hesitant to reach out to help if it continues to happen.
They’re not going to the bathroom
Going to the bathroom is a natural part of life, and if your parrot hasn’t gone in a long time, it could be a sign that something is wrong.
Constipation on either front is never healthy and can lead to a more severe backup for them if they can’t go sooner than later.
Frequently, an issue in this matter tends to be a result of an infection in their urinary tract or bowel system, or it could be a result of anxiety.
Like humans, parrots might have difficulty going to the bathroom if they feel extraordinarily anxious.
Realize anxiety is a natural part of life and is entirely typical for parrots to experience.
They’re not eating
Eating and diet is a primary makeup of any animal’s longevity, whether you’re talking about humans or with the topic at hand, parrots.
Parrots need to eat every day just like us, and if they don’t eat enough, there can be significant health consequences as a result.
If your parrot isn’t eating enough, there may be another health issue going on.
Examples could be anything from a virus that makes them feel ill or anxiety, causing them to not physically be able to eat.
Either way, try to take a deeper dive to see what might be upsetting them and not be afraid to reach out for help.
They’re eating too much
As great as it is for people to eat an abundance of food, it’s never ideal for an extended period of time, unless it’s done healthily.
Similarly with parrots, if a parrot is over-eating, it could be a sign that they’re stressed or have something physically wrong with them where their calories aren’t staying.
Although it’s unlikely, a tape-worm can be a possible explanation as to why they’re eating an abundance of food.
On the other hand, it’s likely that eating a stress-relief for them, meaning they enjoy eating since it allows them to feel comfortable again.
They’re being quiet
Regardless of how educated you are on parrots, you should have the pre-determined knowledge that parrots are social butterflies.
Parrots love to communicate and have fun, making them one of the most social creatures in the entire world.
As great as this might seem, if your parrot is all of a sudden quiet, something more severe may be going on.
Try to take a closer look at them to see if they’re eating, have energy, or seem worried about anything.
If the issue persists, make sure you bring them to the vet right away.
They’re being overly loud
On the opposite end of the spectrum, if your parrot is being significantly louder than they usually are, something is likely going on that’s affecting them negatively, causing them to express themselves in a thunderous way.
Usually, a parrot will be overly loud if they want something or if something is wrong, meaning you should take an in-depth investigation into the matter to see what’s wrong.
If you find they’re in physical pain, on top of being loud, they may have sustained a severe injury, which is never ideal for a parrot to experience.
They’re being aggressive
Right next to the commonality that parrots are generally thought of to be social butterflies, in another sense, they’re one of the most cuddly and friendly birds.
As a result, it’s implausible for a parrot to be aggressive toward a human unless it’s toward someone they’re not familiar with.
However, if they’re all of a sudden acting out of hand toward you, something more severe may be going on with them, causing them to act in such a way.
Make sure you do whatever you can to get them help, as it’ll be complicated to get back to a sense of normalcy.
For a more severe sign of your parrot being severely ill, if they appear to be huddled and want nothing to do with anything, immediately get them help.
This is generally a sign of a severe infection, or they ate something that poisoned them.
Do whatever you can to get them to feel somewhat more comfortable, as you forcing them to leave the house can be a significant hindrance to whatever help they might need.
Whatever it is you end up doing, don’t ignore them as this is usually a representation of something severely wrong with them.
Don’t panic, but definitely don’t blow it off.
They’re sitting low on the perch
Right next to a parrot being huddled and the wonder of how severely sick they might be is them sitting low on the perch.
Parrots love to be high and enjoy being up on their perch.
Basically, if they have an overly mundane look to them while sitting low on their perch, something may be wrong.
Try not to overreact to the situation and think they’re going to die but do whatever it is you can do to get them help soon.
Even if it’s a day where your vet is closed, there should be a 24-hour animal hospital near, so don’t be afraid to reach out to them.
Furthering the examples to look out for if your parrot isn’t acting right is if they’re sitting on the bottom of the cage.
Now, if your parrot seems perfectly fine and excited to see you, there’s probably nothing wrong if they’re sitting on the bottom of the cage.
However, a lot of the time, if your parrot isn’t feeling well and is unable to climb or fly, it’s quite common for them to sit on the bottom of the cage.
Keep in mind, parrots love to climb and fly, meaning it’d be the equivalent of seeing a human lying down on a sidewalk.
Still, make sure you take a look at them and if they seem off, get them help.
They’re hanging on the cage with their beak instead of sitting on the perch
Besides sitting on the cage’s bottom, some parrots might force themselves to climb up by using their beak.
If this is the case, it might be they injured a wing or their feet, causing them to use their beak as a tool to climb up the cage instead.
Even though they might be okay on the inside in this example, a severe injury to their feet or wings should never be ignored.
As a result, do whatever you can to make sure your parrot is okay physically, otherwise, they might hurt themselves more by falling.
Still, be mindful of other issues going on with them since physical sickness isn’t the only answer for this.
Their head is tucked under their wing
If you ask a human what they do when they’re stressed or feeling down, a lot of them might answer that they lay in bed and all day and try to relax.
In another sense, we tend to stay in bed and hide from society whenever we’re not feeling well.
Similar to humans, it’s ubiquitous for parrots to try and hide out whenever something is potentially going wrong with them, or they don’t feel well.
However, since they don’t have a bed to binge Netflix in, many of them will tuck their head under their wing.
If you see your parrot doing this, try to help them and immediately reach out to their vet.
They have ruffled feathers consistently
Generally speaking, most parrot owners know that a sign of an aging or sick animal is how they look physically.
For example, with cats, if their hair isn’t groomed like it usually is, this is typically a sign that they’re not feeling well.
With this example at hand, you can apply it to a parrot since a parrot who doesn’t feel well will almost always have ruffled feathers all over their body.
Just like cats, they try to groom themselves, and if your parrot all of it sudden looks out of wack physically, they may be severely sick.
Feeling weak or having the overall image of appearing weak tends to be associated with sickness.
With this in mind, you can easily apply it to your parrot if they’re not feeling well or have an overall look to them that isn’t ideal. It’s hard to judge what defines a parrot being weak, but you should be able to tell if you look hard enough.
If they don’t have the ability to climb up their cage or pick something up that they’d typically be able to, this is a sign that something is wrong. In some cases, it could be something wrong with them physically, but a lot of time, it’s something more severe.
They have bad balance and awkwardness
If you know anything about parrots and how they live their average life, then you’d know how crucial outstanding balance and awareness is for them to properly live.
For instance, in the wild, parrots hang all-around trees without any issue at all, meaning balance is vital for a parrot to have.
Regardless of how long they’ve been in captivity, parrots will still have the same level of balance they’d have even in the wild.
Nevertheless, if your parrot is falling and has an overall awkwardness with whatever it is they’re trying to hang on, this is a common sign that something more severe is going on.
Lumps or swelled body
If a human ever finds a lump randomly on their body, they tend to almost always have an adverse reaction to it, and rightfully so.
Lumps are never an ideal situation to discover on the body, and this is absolutely true in the parrot world as well.
Even if your parrot seems perfectly fine, if they an unusual lump or a swelled body for whatever reason, this is a common sign of something be wrong with their health.
Keep in mind, they will develop more severe symptoms from this if it is something wrong but always get the lumps looked at, no matter what.
They’re picking at their feathers
If a parrot starts to develop something nasty with their health, it’s widespread for them to begin picking at their feathers.
For whatever reason, feather picking is a prevalent example in the parrot world for parrots to cope with whatever it is that’s bothering them.
If your parrot randomly begins to experience these particular matters, and all of a sudden starts picking their feathers, realize something more severe is going on.
Just like a person has coping mechanisms when they’re in the hospital not feeling well, the same thing is right with parrots.
As with any other animal, a constant shake or overall trembling look is never ideal for a parrot to experience.
Keep in mind, some parrots will shake if they’re cold, nervous, or anxious, but this will typically go away once the issue at hand is addressed.
If you find that the external factors were addressed, but nothing is changing, something more severe might be going on.
Many viral infections can cause a parrot to feel cold, causing them to shake and tremble in a way that’s very uncommon for most parrots to experience.
Regardless of this, make sure you do whatever it is you can do to ensure they stop trembling soon before it gets worse.
They have dull eyes and a weakened color
The physical appearance of a parrot is the most apparent sign of whether or not something is wrong.
Unlike humans, parrots don’t have the ability to hide whatever it is that’s wrong with them.
As a result, they’ll typically show whatever is going on with them negatively, regardless if it’s a sickness or not.
Still, if you find your parrot has duller eyes and a weakened color, it could be a sign of an infection or something more serious that requires a diagnosis.
Either way, just like many other examples on this, a simple trip to the vet should be able to clear the air on what’s wrong.
They keep walking in circles
Repetition is never ideal in the parrot world unless it’s a part of their daily schedule that could be potentially helping them.
However, if you randomly stumble on your parrot walking in circles over and over again, this could be a sign that they’re disoriented or have something else going on with them.
In our species, if someone is pacing back and forth, it could mean a lot of things, and this definitely applies to the parrot world as well.
Still, you mustn’t blow it off and do whatever it is you can do to ensure your parrot will be okay.
They have an unusual smell
No matter the pet you have, if you find your parrot has an unusual smell that isn’t very common for them to have at all, there could be a multitude of issues going on.
They might not be cleaning themselves because they’re injured or have an infection causing their bowel movements to be nasty.
Whatever the case might be, it’s challenging to diagnose since a terrible smell can result from many things.
On the lighter note, it could result from them eating something that might just smell bad on the way out.
On the other hand, it could be a severe issue with their internal system that’ll require professional treatment.
They’re repeatedly inactive
Like you can imagine with any animal that’s deemed as being incredibly active and social, there comes the point with how long they should be inactive.
Obviously, parrots need to rest like everyone else.
Still, if they have overall sluggishness to them, there might be something wrong.
Keep in mind, parrots do rest quite a bit, especially as they get older, but it’s a matter of a difference in how active they usually are.
Basically, if you notice your parrot randomly being inactive, you might get a sense that something is wrong.
They have a change in personality
Personality changes are usually the most looked at area when it comes to what’s wrong with your parrot sickness-wise.
If your parrot randomly begins to be sleepy or aggressive, when they’re typically not like that, there could be something wrong with their physical or mental health.
Obviously, all of this depends on your specific parrot, and a lot of the time, it tends to be an external factor that caused them to change in such a way.
However, if you’re worried about their change in personality, get them help.
Without stating the obvious, if your parrot randomly collapses and there isn’t a reason why they did, such as being tired, make sure they get help.
Even if you’re sure they collapsed because of feeling tired, don’t try to risk the situation.
It’s always better to play an extreme example like this very safe, as opposed to not caring and seeing what happens next.
For all you know, delaying them from getting help can be a significant hindrance down the line with how well they are.