As pet bird owners, we are aware of many issues concerning our pets and how best to resolve them. However, one commonly overlooked occurrence is the strange situation of our pet bird losing feathers. Some breeds of birds might shed feathers at certain points in their lives but if your pet bird does not fall into such a category, you might have some cause for concern.
It is best advised that you call your vet immediately and get him to diagnose the problem. In most cases, loss of feathers is triggered spontaneously or is self-induced. Nonetheless, such behaviour can easily result in more serious medical issues.
The process of molting is quite common among birds. As long as there are no bald spots on your pet bird and new feathers constantly grow to replace the fallen ones, there is no cause for concern.
Apart from molting, there are more serious medical conditions that can cause birds to lose their feathers. An experienced vet will be able to tell straight away whether or not the process of your bird losing feathers is natural or caused by a sickness. Parasites are common problems and can cause birds to peck at their own skin or pluck their own feathers. In addition, parasites also prevent new feathers from growing by causing damage to the follicles.
The follicles themselves can also become inflamed which leads to other medical problems for your pet bird. It is difficult to notice such a condition as we are untrained in this field but a vet will be able to diagnose it by doing a feather follicle and skin biopsy. Yeast and bacteria are the common causes for such inflammations. Your birds will peck at the inflamed skin in an attempt to ease the discomfort and in the process, cause its own feathers to drop off.
Another common cause of feathers falling out is allergies. Your pet bird might be allergic to a number of things. It is your duty as a responsible owner to know what these things are. As a general rule of thumb, always ensure that your pet bird’s cage is clean. Zinc can also cause a reaction that makes a bird’s feathers drop. As such, ensure that as little zinc as possible is within your pet bird’s cage.
Falling feathers can also indicate severe medical conditions like internal tumors and thyroid diseases. In short, take your bird to a vet immediately if you notice it losing feathers unnaturally.