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Thread: Help, Green cheek having seizures

 
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Stuyp's Avatar


    Help, Green cheek having seizures

    Hi,

    My pet conure is having random seizures off late. She will fly off her cage in fear and once on the ground will start to blink her right eye and kick her right foot uncontrollably. After a couple of seconds this will be over but she wont have any feeling or strengt in her right leg for a minute or two.

    After the first one we went to the vet straight away. A blood test showed a bit to high white blood-cell count so we started giving her antibiotics.

    Instead of improving it seems to be getting worse. The last time it happened I managed to film the end for showing the vet ( [Users must be registered and logged in to view attached photos or hyperlinks ]). They want to start with epilepsy medicine now but i'm not all that sure that would solve the underlying problem.

    Has anyone seen this before and knows what to do about it? I'm getting pretty desperate here..

    Some extra info;
    The frequency seems to be two-three times a week but seeing as we both work this can be a lot more
    After and between attacks she seems just fine like always. She eats, preens and plays like always.
    We feed her pellets with the occasional sunflower seed as reward.
    We feed her cooked pasta and rice without salt or sauce when we eat it for supper.
    We feed her fresh fruit or smoothies when we have it to
    - Offcourse with safe vegetables and fruits
    She is kept in a cage with another green cheek, they get along fine and like each other very much tough the other one has much more energy then her and this means she sometimes doesn't get left alone when she wants to be.
    I've checked the cage for damages, there are none.
    I've checked their toys for metals, only a couple of standard birdtoy rings and clasps are used but most of it I fastened with zip ties. According to the vet it couldn't be metal poisoning anyway.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    Dragonlady2's Avatar


    Parrots

    Willy-Eclectus, Oliver-alexandrine,Mookie-Senegal,Bella- Australian King,Joey and Peewee- Barrabands, Peachiegirl-Peachfront conure,Pepper- crimson belly conure, Peanut-plum head, Babyblue-parrotlette, Harry and Louie-canaries.
    How sad for your little conure. I am assuming your vet is an avian vet? What about getting a second opinion from a different vet?

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    PlaxMacaws's Avatar


    Parrots

    B&G (Jack), MM (Maynard), Hy (Zaf), GW (Salsa), NC (Bozley)
    Welcome to PP, Stuyp. I'm sorry to hear about your conure's seizure disorder. I have a macaw with a very similar condition. He's an older wild-caught bird that I acquired in 1982. He had a stroke in 2011 and as a result became seriously impaired on his left side. Thereafter, he could no longer fly and for approximately 8 months he had trouble standing on flat surfaces without falling over, and far more trouble trying to remain perched on anything. He was, however, persistent to attempt the things he used to be able to do, and he did so over and over and over. He thus managed to 'rewire' himself enough to significantly mitigate his limitations. He still can't fly and is a bit wobbly when holding his food items, but with the corner shelves I've placed in his cage at key locations he manages quite well.

    The seizures first emerged in my poor macaw toward the end of 2016. From then on he would tend to experience one of them at anywhere from 5-day to 2-week intervals, and would occasionally experience two seizures within a 12-hour period. I began tracking his seizure events in May of 2017. At the end of January 2018, and for unknown reasons, his seizures began to grow farther apart. During this recent period of diminished seizure frequency (from the previous <2-week intervals), he seized on 2/15/18, then again on 4/28/18, then twice (5 hours apart) on 5/20/18. I've noticed that these things tend to occur most frequently while he's trying to sleep in the very early AM hours (for whatever reason).

    I'll attempt to describe my bird's seizures. From virtual silence, he typically emits several horrifying screams (as if in excruciating pain) and then, if in his cage, grasps the cage bars with his beak as well as his right foot, and just hangs there twitching as his screams diminish. He extends his wings and the twitches of his head intensify, along with those of his left eye and his left foot and leg. The seizures can last anywhere from one minute to three minutes. Once the twitching stops, as with your conure, he his temporarily paralyzed on his left side and thus has trouble standing (i.e., not falling over) for about two or three additional minutes. After all of that passes, he reverts back to his usual behaviors and personality (until his next seizure episode).

    I always rush to my bird at the onset of each seizure. I embrace him while holding his left foot as I speak to him calmly. In this way, I am able to stabilize him, keep him from falling, and protect his wings (which he consistently extends during these events) from becoming tangled in the cage bars, etc. Local vets have suggested anti-seizure medications but as it is this bird has marginal balance and coordination (due to his 2011 stroke) and he loves to climb a great deal. Since seizure medications tend to sedate, I would be worried about increasing his fall risk. As such, I do my best to protect and comfort him as well as track his seizure events and I'm continually trying to think of new ways to make his situation safer.
    "Please adopt older birds!"

  4. The following user likes this post:

    Dragonlady2 (06-06-2018)

  5. #4
    Junior Member
    Stuyp's Avatar


    Hi Dragonlady2, yes it is an avian vet. We will go for a second opinion but as the last vet said they would probably suggest an MRI. Not only do we not have that kind of money right now but she told us that an MRI could only see things that would be to late or impossible to treat anyway (tumors couldn't be removed because of the small size of the bird)

  6. #5
    Junior Member
    Stuyp's Avatar


    Hi PlaxMacaws, Thanks for sharing your story. Tough it doesn't offer the answer i'm seeking as to what could cause it in the first place it does give me some ease of mind that she may survive this. As it is now we took out a toy from the cage (popsicle sticks with colored dyes on them, bought at a petshop so at that moment we thought it would be safe but now we are doubting that) and started the medication. The seizures seem to subside a bit and she seems much more lively than she did last week. I can't imagine that either the starting of the medicine or the toy would cause it to get better so fast so i think it's just a coincidence.

    I've hung a kind of hammock at the bottom of the cage from an old towel so when she falls down she falls softer but for the moment i don't know what i can do more.

  7. The following 2 users like this post:

    Dragonlady2 (06-08-2018), PlaxMacaws (06-08-2018)

  8. #6
    Senior Member
    PlaxMacaws's Avatar


    Parrots

    B&G (Jack), MM (Maynard), Hy (Zaf), GW (Salsa), NC (Bozley)
    Quote Originally Posted by Stuyp View Post
    Hi PlaxMacaws, Thanks for sharing your story. Tough it doesn't offer the answer i'm seeking as to what could cause it in the first place it does give me some ease of mind that she may survive this. As it is now we took out a toy from the cage (popsicle sticks with colored dyes on them, bought at a petshop so at that moment we thought it would be safe but now we are doubting that) and started the medication. The seizures seem to subside a bit and she seems much more lively than she did last week. I can't imagine that either the starting of the medicine or the toy would cause it to get better so fast so i think it's just a coincidence.

    I've hung a kind of hammock at the bottom of the cage from an old towel so when she falls down she falls softer but for the moment i don't know what i can do more.
    Stuyp: I'm so sorry that you and your little bird must deal with this terrible affliction. Seizure disorders are no fun at all. I know of no magical solutions, especially since there can be different causation in each case. I had a good friend (a great friend to PP as well) who owned a GCC with a seizure disorder very similar to the one your little bird suffers from. The bird's name is/was Rain and the owner's name was Brandon. Brandon passed away at the end of 2016. I have no information as to what became of Rain. Rain had heart and liver issues as well -unknown if the seizures were related- and Brandon was treating her with milk thistle and certain meds. Brandon expressed that high energy activities, such as flapping, tended to bring on Rain's seizures.

    Please have a look at the following thread concerning Rain's seizure issue:

    [Users must be registered and logged in to view attached photos or hyperlinks ]

    And here is a suggestion I had for Brandon about considering the flickering of fluorescent lighting as a potential trigger:

    [Users must be registered and logged in to view attached photos or hyperlinks ]

    There's a link in that post from me describing the fluorescent light flicker trigger potential.

    As mentioned, my macaw, Maynard, has experienced a dramatic reduction in the frequency of his seizures during the past several months. The disturbing thing is that I'm unsure why they have declined and I thus fear the decline may not be permanent. Hopefully you'll find a way to reduce the frequency and/or severity of your little bird's episodes. Please keep us updated.
    "Please adopt older birds!"

  9. The following user likes this post:

    Lady (06-09-2018)

  10. #7
    Senior Member
    LesliesBabies's Avatar


    Parrots

    Glenn, Indian Ringneck; Sherman, White-capped Pionus; JoJo, Budgie; Tommy, Budgie; Sir Lancelot, Yellow-side Greencheek; Daytona, Sun Conure
    I'm sorry to hear of your GCC's seizures. First, please know that neurological disorders aren't totally uncommon in conures. Most small birds do not survive surgery but do survive scans. Discuss your financial situation with the second-opinion AV. He MAY give you some discounts or offer a payment plan.
    I have grand mal epilepsy and that is what mine are like. By taking my medicine, I've been seizure- free for years.

  11. The following 2 users like this post:

    Dragonlady2 (07-27-2018), Lady (08-01-2018)

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