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Allergies in Birds

October 1, 2014

Have you ever wondered if your Rapid City bird can have allergic reactions? While you may not often hear the term allergies in relation to birds, it does appear that your feathered buddy can have adverse reactions to certain substances. The occurrence of allergic reactions in birds is still being studied, so at this time there are no definitive tests. Many pet owners, however, do report that birds, particularly parrots, react to certain foods and other substances, such as sulfur, peanuts, wheat, or spirulina. Birds with allergies may sneeze or wheeze. In some cases, the bird may develop a skin rash from an allergen. This seems to be more common in parrots than in other birds. Just as with people, these reactions can continue to get more and more severe as the bird’s body will react more strongly to an allergen each time.

The pollens produced by flowering trees and plants can have an effect on your avian friend. Some theories hold that birds from tropical climates, such as Central or South America, may be allergic to birds with powdery, downy feathers, such as birds from Asia or Australia. Your feathered buddy may also have food allergies.

If you know or suspect that your pet bird has allergies, there are steps you can take to keep your pet as comfortable as possible. The best way to do that is to keep your environment clean and free of allergens. Changing your air filter frequently will help cut down on dust, mold, and pollen in the air. Antihistamines may help your little buddy, but should never be given to your pet without checking with your vet. Keeping your bird on a healthy diet will help keep his immune system healthy. Make sure your feathered buddy gets plenty of Vitamin A and beta-carotene, as these help keep your pet bird healthy.

There are also several substance you should keep away from your bird, even if you aren’t certain he is allergic. Fumes from hairspray, scented candles, potpourri, and other strong-smelling products can be harmful to your feathered buddy, and should not be used in your bird’s vicinity.

Please check with your Rapid City vet if you suspect your bird may have allergies, and check our site here frequently for more articles on pet care.

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