|Finding an avian (bird) vet and
establishing a good relationship with them are
perhaps the two most beneficial things you can do
for your pet bird. A bird's anatomy is quite
different from a cat or dog, so they require
specialized care administered by a qualified
veterinarian. If you are a new bird owner, it is
likely that you have many questions about what to
look for in an avian vet. Luckily there are a few
basic steps that can be taken to ensure that the
doctor you choose is equipped to provide your
feathered friend with top notch care.
|Once you've located a
veterinarian that specializes in birds, you need
to schedule an office visit to introduce yourself
and your bird. You will want to do this within 48
hours of getting your bird per our guarantee
policy. This will also provide you with an
opportunity to ask your vet a few questions about
his/her practice. Here are some good questions to
keep in mind for this first visit:
|How long have you been
treating birds? As the saying goes, experience
is the best teacher. Choose a veterinarian with a
solid background in avian medicine to make sure
that your pet's care is in good hands.
|Are you familiar with my
bird's species? Different types of birds react
differently to certain medical procedures, so your
vet needs to be knowledgeable about specific
treatments that will work for your bird.
|Are you a member of the AAV?
The Association of Avian Veterinarians
advocates only the highest quality care, and you
want no less for your pet.
|Do you keep birds at home?
People who have birds of their own are often more
in tune with a bird's body language and can pick
up on subtle signs that may aid in diagnosing
|Do you make house calls?
Birds easily get stressed when traveling, so if
your bird is very sick it may be necessary for the
doctor to come to you. Those who own several birds
often rely on their veterinarian's home visits for
both check ups and emergency care.
|How often do you recommend
check ups? Most veterinarians will recommend
at least one examination per year, just to make
sure that your bird stays in good general health.
|A good avian veterinarian will
provide clear answers to all of these questions,
and will exhibit a genuine interest in caring for
birds and exotics.
|Observe the way that the
veterinarian relates to the bird during the first
exam. Does he/she seem comfortable and confident
handling the bird? Does the staff make an effort
to make the visit less stressful for the bird?
Have they attempted to make you comfortable? All
of these should be factors in deciding which
veterinarian is best for you.
|After you've decided on an avian
veterinarian, it is important to maintain a good
working relationship and regular communication
with them. When birds show signs of illness, they
need medical attention fast - your vet could very
well save your bird's life one day. Forming a
partnership with a good avian vet early on in bird
ownership is the key to fulfilling the
responsibility of providing good health, long
life, and happiness to a pet. Make sure that your
feathered friend stays in prime condition by
taking an active role in his medical care!