We’ve all heard of the term “cold feet” before – and perhaps some of us have even experienced it.
But when parrots get cold feet, it’s not because they don’t want to get married – it’s because they are excited or stressed out.
But if that’s what it means when a parrot gets cold feet, then what does it mean when they have hot feet?
The answer to this question is actually quite complex because hot feet can mean a few different things. More often than not, if a parrot has hot feet for an extended period of time, it may mean that they are suffering from some type of illness – most often related to the kidneys. With that being said, hot feet can also be a sign of other things too. Hot feet can also be a sign of stress or obesity.
But how do you know which of these is the case?
What is considered “hot”?
How do you measure whether or not a parrot’s feet are hot?
And what should you do if your parrot has hot feet?
Today we will answer all of these questions and more, so let’s not waste another minute!
Why does my parrot have hot feet?
As mentioned above, parrots can get hot feet for a number of reasons. Let’s break each of these down a little more thoroughly:
The most common reason for hot feet on a parrot is illness.
While any type of illness can cause a parrot to develop hot feet, they are most often related to some type of infection in the kidneys.
When the body is not being properly detoxified by the kidneys, the result is a fever.
Just like us, when a bird gets a fever they can start to overheat.
One of the main places that you will notice this heat is in the feet.
If your parrot’s feet are only temporarily hot, it’s unlikely that kidney disease is the problem. If your parrot has had hot feet for an extended period of time, it may be time to see a veterinarian.
A bird’s kidneys help to filter waste products from the body, and also help to maintain water and electrolyte balance.
They are extremely important, and when not functioning properly, kidneys can cause very serious issues for your bird. Action should be taken immediately to see a veterinarian.
Along with hot feet, parrots suffering from kidney disease may display signs of depression, anorexia, weakness, diarrhea, increased thirst, difficulty breathing, a puffed abdomen, or swollen joints.
They may also show a lack of interest in activities.
If your parrot has hot feet and they are obese, their weight could be the issue.
Parrots who are overweight tend to have hotter feet, on average, than parrots that are of normal weight.
How do you know if your parrot is overweight?
The average weight of parrots differs based on variety, so it’s difficult to give an exact “perfect” weight for your parrot.
That being said, there are some things that you can look for that will tell you whether or not your parrot is overweight:
Look at your parrot’s breast muscle from the front.
Does it look like they have cleavage?
If you answered yes, your parrot may be overweight.
Part your parrots feathers on their neck.
Can you see their jugular vein?
If you said no, your parrot could be overweight.
Does your parrot become easily out of breath with exercise?
They could be carrying too much weight.
If you are concerned that your parrot may be overweight, you can take them to the veterinarian for confirmation.
If obesity is the cause of your parrot’s hot feet, this can be managed through proper diet and exercise.
If your parrot’s feet are only temporarily hot, there’s a high probability that the cause is stress.
Has your parrot recently been through a stressful situation?
Or was there something that made them fearful before you felt their feet?
If so, stress could be the cause of the high temperatures.
When a parrot is stressed out or fearful, the heart beats faster and the body temperature naturally rises.
This is especially true if your parrot has been flapping its wings or flying around the house due to stress or fear.
If your parrot has recently been stressed out, give them a few minutes to calm down before checking their temperature again.
If possible, give them a cool place to rest to help bring their temperature back down to normal.
Birds who are stressed out in hot environments run the risk of heat stroke, so do your best to keep them calm and in a shaded, cool space.
How do you know if your parrot’s feet are “too hot”?
Unlike people, you can’t really measure the temperature of a parrot’s feet with a thermometer.
Rather, it really comes down to familiarizing yourself with your parrot and getting to know what their natural temperature feels like.
If your parrot is tame, you should have them perch on your hand or finger often.
The more often you do this, the more readily you will be able to tell what their natural temperature feels like.
From there, you’ll easily be able to notice whether or not your parrot is feeling warmer than usual.
The core body temperature of most parrots sits around 41 degrees celsius, while the temperature of the feet is between 37 and 39 degrees celsius.
This is slightly warmer than the average temperature of the human body, so don’t panic if their feet feel warmer than yours – this is normal.
It’s only when their feet are hotter than their own norm that you should start to take note.
What should I do if my parrot has hot feet?
If your parrot has hot feet, try not to panic.
Firstly, take a note of what they have been doing in the last 30 minutes.
Have they been stressed out?
Or have they been more active than usual?
If your parrot has been stressed out, flying around, or otherwise exercising, it could be that their core temperature naturally increased for the time being.
Wait another 30 minutes before checking their temperature again.
If their temperature has gone back to normal, great.
If not, continue to monitor your parrot’s temperature and behavior.
Are they showing other signs of kidney disease?
Are they showing signs of obesity?
If either of these things could be of concern you should take your parrot to a veterinarian as soon as possible to have them checked out.
A veterinarian can help to diagnose any kidney issues that your parrot may be having or can help to create a proper diet and exercise program if weight is the issue.
In conclusion, parrots, like humans, can spike fevers and high temperatures.
Sometimes hot feet are just a sign of stress or overactivity, but other times they can be a sign of something more serious like obesity or kidney issues.
If your parrot has hot feet that don’t seem to be going away, set up an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible to rule out concerning issues like kidney disease.
Otherwise, just try to keep them cool, relaxed, and as non-stressed out as possible.