Veterinary Center for Birds and Exotics Blog

10 Everyday Items That Are Toxic to Birds

Birds can be like toddlers: They are both very oral and like to check things out by putting them in their mouths. Just like children, when pet birds are out unsupervised, this habit of tasting things can get them into trouble. As an avian veterinarian, I treat birds every week for getting into toxic substances.…

Most Common Obese Exotic Pets: No. 1 Parrots

Does Polly want a cracker? Maybe. But should Polly have a cracker? The answer is no. Polly, like many pet birds and other types of exotic pets, is prone to obesity. With little exercise and too much time to sit around and eat out of boredom, too many captive animals become overweight. With the extra…

The Animal Kingdom’s Hardest Working Dads

As we’re celebrating our own dads this Father’s Day weekend, don’t forget that there are plenty of patriarchs in the animal kingdom who deserve to be celebrated, too. Of course, there are some species in the animal world where the fathers do the fertilization duties and are never seen again — but you may be…

5 Things You Don’t Know About Cockatiels

Cockatiels are phenomenal birds and perhaps the most popular bird I see in my veterinary practice these days. Why are these little animals so beloved? Here are five facts about cockatiels that may surprise you. 1. Cockatiels make great first pets — feathered or otherwise. Without a doubt, cockatiels, which are one of the smaller species…

Why Does My Rabbit… Not Eat Hay?

Many healthy rabbits will turn up their noses at hay because they are offered excessive amounts of pelleted food. This is because most rabbits prefer pellets to hay. Rabbit pellets are predominantly made of carbohydrates, and like most people, rabbits love their carbs and will choose them over fiber (hay). The general rule for healthy…

Why Does My Bird… Like to Hide Under the Paper in Her Cage?

Many birds like to hide under cage paper as part of normal playful behavior. Commonly, female birds will hide under cage paper when they are reproductively active and trying to build nests. Hiding is of no concern at all unless birds become obsessed with this behavior and with egg laying to the point that they…

Why Does My Rabbit… Eat His Poop?

It may seem gross, but rabbits normally eat some of their feces once a day, either early in the morning or late at night. These special feces are called cecotropes, or “night feces.” They are produced through fermentation of food in the part of the rabbit’s digestive tract called the cecum. Cecotropes are soft feces…

Video: Want a Pet Snake? Here’s What You Need to Know

Snakes may not be your typical cuddle buddies, but as snake owners will tell you, their pets recognize them and respond to their voices. They’re fascinating animals, but they have very specific environmental and dietary needs that must be met to keep them happy and healthy. If you’re considering a snake as a pet, here’s what Dr.…

A Guide to Dental Care for Exotic Pets

February is National Pet Dental Health Month, and just like dogs and cats, did you know that exotic pets need dental care, too? In general, most pet owners don’t brush their animals’ teeth, so tartar can build up, and their pet’s breath can become malodorous. Over months to years, excessive tartar accumulates leading to gingivitis,…

How to Keep Your Bird Safe During the Holidays

Holidays can bring a great deal of happiness to both people and pets. But holidays also bring potential dangers to our feathered friends. Though injuries and accidents happen all year long, they seem to occur more often during the holidays. Here are some tips to help you avoid some often overlooked holiday hazards. 1. Say…