Charles’s Beak Accident

April 22, 2011 § 1 Comment

On January 26, 2011, Charles and Lola had an accident.  Lola flew to his cage and Charles was tapping and preening her beak through the bars.  I think she went to preen his back and grabbed too hard for him given the size difference– luckily I was right there and grabbed her immediately and put her back in her cage.  By the time I turned around, Charles was bleeding everywhere.  I immediately rushed him to the vet and thankfully they were able to see him right away.  They put some pain medication on his beak and checked him out: his lower beak is basically snapped right in half.  They said that it looked a lot worse than it was– it’s like a fingernail and cuticles basically; they bleed a lot when you break/rip them but they do grow back.  Unfortunately, Charles’s beak was split so far down that it will never be normal again.  It has grown back for the most part, but there is still a crack down the middle.

At first, he was unable to eat due to the pain and strangeness of this “new” beak.  He had to stay at the hospital for a few days overnight on several medications as well as to receive tube feeding.  The vet said that he’d been an incredibly good boy.  No screaming at all and no fussing when he had to be handled.

Charles during one of my visits to him at the vet

The photo above was from his second day at the vet– I visited him for about one and a half hours.  He was really excited to see me, which made me happy.  He stepped right up and I spoke softly to him for a while, and brought him two of his favorite toys.  He took a brief nap on my finger as well.  About 40 minutes in, he started to chirp softly which was a very good sign.  It made me smile and he got excited and did a lap around the room!!  I think he was trying to tell me that he was going to be okay, I hope.  He came right back to me and then took a nice, long nap, tucked into his back.  It was very sweet.  I felt much more relieved.  He made a noble attempt to eat some millet as well, but he couldn’t quite bite it.

After a few days, Charles came home, and was medicated for two weeks via syringe.  It was a definite struggle, and he was not very happy with me, but we got through it.  He did require a second overnight stay at the vet when the dead part of his lower mandible fell off and caused some bleeding, but thankfully it was only one night and he made a swift recovery.

Today, Charles is doing better than ever.  Although his lower beak will be forever split down the middle, he does not let it slow him down one bit.  He eats, plays, and lives normally 🙂  About once every two months or so, we will have to have his upper mandible trimmed as it now overgrows a bit, but we did our first beak trim in early April and it went very smoothly.  Otherwise, you’d never, ever be able to tell, not by looking at him nor by his behaviors.  I’m very proud of my big boy and so happy that he made such a full recovery!

[This entry has been imported, with some edits, from my previous blog.]

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