I was in the front room with my cockatiel the other day when I heard the strangest noise come from behind me that I had never heard her make before.
I turned around to see if she was okay, and after a few moments, she did it again and it became clear that she was sneezing.
Maybe I had simply never witnessed it before, but as you can imagine, I was instantly quite worried.
I decided to look into it and find out what was wrong.
So, why is my cockatiel sneezing?
Sneezing in cockatiels is quite common, and can be for a few reasons. Their feathers are covered in powdery residue that can get into their sinuses. It may also be high amounts of dust in their area, it could be something related to their diet, or they could be ill.
Ultimately, the thing not to do is panic.
Cockatiels sneezing is quite normal, but you should be wary of excessive sneezing.
If they sneeze once or twice as an isolated incident, as mine did, there’s probably nothing to worry about.
Just keep an eye on it for the future.
Let’s look further into this.
Table of Contents
What does it mean when a cockatiel sneezes?
It’s important to clear up right away that, the main reason cockatiels sneeze at all is essentially the same reason we do.
It’s a respiratory reaction to clear foreign objects from the sinuses.
Sneezing gives a full and thorough clear out of the lungs and sinuses.
So, the most common reason for cockatiels sneezing, as I said, is the powdery residue produced by their feathers.
They like to flap and prune and move these residues about, and naturally, some of it gets in their sinuses.
So, most of the time, this is all it will be.
It could also be excessive dust in their environment.
You’ve got to remember how much smaller cockatiels are than us, and so if small amounts of dust can be painful to our sinuses, imagine what it’s like for cockatiels.
You should regularly dust your cockatiels area, and that means on the ceilings, walls, everywhere dust could settle.
Sometimes, things in their diet can also cause sneezing, but this is less common.
If they are sneezing regularly, try switching up their diet somewhat.
What does it mean when a cockatiel sneezes a lot?
If your cockatiel begins sneezing excessively, it’s probably a good idea to start trying to figure out the cause.
If it’s sneezing a lot, as in, constantly every day, then there’s potentially something more problematic going on.
First thing to do, if you’re at all worried or unsure, is go to the vet.
You may want to avoid paying bills and that’s understandable, but the fact is that whatever it is could become worse quickly if it goes untreated.
Clean regularly near where your cockatiel lives.
Dust gets everywhere, so you’ll need to vacuum and dust all the surfaces.
Don’t get complacent when it comes to cleaning.
Ultimately, your cockatiel sneezing a lot is probably only a mild issue that you can fix easily by cleaning their area or changing their diet, but the real trouble is identifying this. no one is better equipped for that than your vet.
Is it okay for my cockatiel to be sneezing?
As I said, there is no getting around the fact that your cockatiel’s own body produces a substance that causes it to sneeze.
It will sneeze with some regularity whatever its condition.
That said, as I said above, there is a fine line between habitual sneezing and excessive sneezing.
Don’t take any chances if you’re worried the cockatiel is sneezing more than it should be.
Much better to have a wasted vet visit than exacerbate a potential illness.
What are the signs of a sick cockatiel?
Naturally, excessive sneezing is one of them, although it doesn’t often indicate an actual quantifiable illness, rather just a discomfort in its living or diet.
If you see it sitting in a huddled posture, often with its feathers fluffed, this can indicate it is not well.
If it seems to be losing balance or teetering, this is a very bad sign for a bird of any kind.
It may be trembling, or walking in circles, or in other ways acting irritable or restless.
Again, though, the most important piece of advice is always to seek the opinion of a vet.
So, the simple but cautious answer is that sneezing is fairly normal and common for cockatiels, but you should nonetheless keep a close eye on your cockatiel if you hearing it sneezing regularly.
For cockatiels in particular it is more common than other species, but nonetheless, they can sneeze excessively.
If your cockatiel is sneezing too much, you should take them to the vet as soon as you can.