Friday, January 8, 2010

A Sad Day for the Fauniferous Zoo: Freya's Death from Kidney Failure

This morning when Beth woke me up, sniffling, I knew something was wrong.  Sometime during the night, one of our cockatiels, Freya, had died.  She'd been apparently fine the night before, but Beth found her lying on the bottom of her cage in the morning.  Freya was around 7 years old, young for a cockatiel (Rydia is 14, by comparison, and doing well), and hadn't shown any signs of typical bird illness, so we were both shocked and hurt badly by the loss.

We took Freya to the vet's office for a necropsy, and he found signs of kidney failure in systemic gout and urate crystal buildup throughout her body, and said that many cockatiels in the US suffer from congenital kidney problems.  We'd missed the signs in her droppings--every bird owner knows to "watch the poo" as an indicator of health, but we'd thought her larger droppings more a sign of prospective egg-laying (as it smelled and looked identically to the droppings produced when a hen is in egg-laying mode, as we knew from past experience).

We're very sad of the loss, but are at least rejoiced that the illness wasn't something contagious, and that Freya went peacefully by all outward appearances.

1 comment:

Sam Taylor said...

I'm so sorry to read about your loss of Freya. It's always tough when it's sudden and unexpected. I was glad to read it was a peaceful passing.