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Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

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Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby sofiacb » Sun Feb 19, 2017 7:57 pm

Hello!

I have a blind lovebird named Rosie. She was born blind due to a neurological problem.

When she was little, she tried several times to fly but, because she would usually hit something before I could get her, she gave up after some time. She exercises a lot by climbing.

Unfortunalety, lately she has been gaining the habit of fluttering when she gets excited, either by listening to my other lovebird or because of something she is playing with, and sometimes she takes off. A few days ago, she hit two walls before I could get to her and even bled a little from her head. She was okay after a few minutes.

Do you think I should clip her wings? I mean, if she is blind there is no down side to clipping her wings, or is there?
sofiacb
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Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby liz » Mon Feb 20, 2017 6:57 am

It will harm her physically because she can't flap and build her chest muscles. Knowing that she can't fly causes fear. There is a big personality difference between a bird who has been clipped and one who's feathers were allowed to grow back.

Do you have him separate from your other love birds? He may not be able to fly but he can feel, smell, hear and touch. Love Birds like to cuddle together.
I had two males who bonded and I would never think of separating them. Tweetle Dum had some kind of physical problem that the Avian vet could not diagnose. Tweetle Dee took care of him like a baby. Toward the end Tweetle Dee fed him and cuddled to keep him warm. Every one would be lucky to have a friend like him. Tweetle Dum died sometime during the night. Since I didn't know what time I left him in the cage another hour.
Tweetle Dee mourned for a few days then wanted to be with my Cockatiels. I had always let them out to fly at the same times and when it was time to go back in he went in the Cockatiels cage. They do not want to be alone.

If it was me I would just keep him confined to one room and not change any furniture in the room. Look for any problems like floor lamps and stuff that he could hit. He should eventually memorize his space. Being with another bird will keep him from getting spooked so easy. He will pick up on his buddy's feelings. Of course this is what I would do and you also have to listen to the others who will come on soon.

Examples:
I had a half grown kitten when I rescued a large cat who's toenails had been removed. A strange cat came in the yard and the big cat cried out. She was too afraid to move. The half grown kitten heard her and jumped on the other cat who could not believe the kitten was that brave and took off. The little one knew there was something wrong with the big cat and became her guardian.
I had a blind and deaf 18 year old terrier. When the other dogs found something to bark at one of the others would lift his ear and bark in it so he could join in. He memorized the house but when outside he could wander the yard but a simple thing like the gate being in another position cause a problem. I could hear him bark and finally went out to check and the other dogs followed me. One of the dogs went down and touched his side so he would follow and he did. After that he must have told one that he wanted out because they never left him out alone again and would walk the yard with him. Then one mourning he was in pain. His two Chihuahua buddies laid with him until we took him to the vet and let him go. The others mourned for a few days.
I have a flock of mostly rescued Cockatiels loose in a 10X12 room. I took in a seizure bird from another rescue who did not have time to care for him. When let in that room he disappeared into the flock and I had to search for him. He never had another seizure.
I took in one that was missing a leg and the other was twisted. He could still use his foot to hold on though it caused problems getting around. I put him in a cage and put it on the floor because some idiot had clipped his wings. I had a bird who could not walk or fly. In other words he was a lump of feathers. Another bird who's wing had been chopped off spent a lot of time with him in his cage. I fed him in his cage separate from the others and some would go in to see if he had something different. The others sort of looked out for him and calmed his fears. By the time his feathers grew back he was already part of the flock. I just have to have a flat place for him to land near their perches.
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liz
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby sofiacb » Mon Feb 20, 2017 10:10 am

She won't be able to flap? I though they could still land in safety if they ever fall from somewhere...

She is in a separate cage from Ivy because Ivy is super territorial and will bite Rosie if she goes in her cage. They spend a lot of time together outside because I let them out at the same time and they cudddle and clean each other.

The problem is her flight isn't controlled she just goes in circles and in a very weird position with her legs streached out, you can see she is scared because doesn't know where or how to land.
sofiacb
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Number of Birds Owned: 2
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Flight: Yes

Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby Pajarita » Mon Feb 20, 2017 2:42 pm

A clipped bird can still flap its wings - not that it will help much in terms of their respiratory system but it does seem to satisfy some innate need in them.

The problem with clipping a bird that can physically fly but cannot see where it goes is that, in order for it to work (meaning, no flight at all so she cannot crash against a wall), you would have to give her a very severe clip and that is a dangerous thing to do because she would fall to the ground like a rock. On the other hand, it's also dangerous to allow her to fly... Personally, if she was mine, I would get her a mate, allow them to bond to each other and put both of them in a large flight cage with soft nets to 'catch' her (in case she falls) right above the bottom. I would allow him to come out to fly but not her. I think that would be the best life you could give her because, as it is, she is blind and alone (people as company don't count for much when it comes to quality of life for little lovebirds because, to them, it has to be a 24/7/365 thing) and coming out and not being able to fly doesn't really benefit her much. If she was in cage where things were always placed in the same spot, she could learn her 'little world' well and move around in it without a problem. And, if she had a mate, she would get the 24/7/365 company/attention/love they need to be happy to the point that her disability will not be an issue at all.
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby sofiacb » Mon Feb 20, 2017 3:10 pm

I understand your point, Pajarita, but I don't think I made myself clear. She doesn't want to fly, she just moves her wings so quickly that she ends up flying. She only takes off because she gets so excited. She still flaps her wings to exercise when she is calm but she does it slow enough so that she doesn't take off. When she does, it's an accident. And she can't control her flight so, it doesn't really matter if she knows the environment or not.

When she's inside her cage, she doesn't fly and she know the environment, because I don't change the location of the perches, just the toys. So she spends her time exploring her toys and walking around and climbing her cage (just like a normal bird).

I have thought of getting her a mate but the problem is, she is very rough in the way she moves. She behaves in a weird way, for example, she uses her beak as a cane to know what is in front of her and it used to stress out my male lovebird because it looked like she was attacking his legs and I'm afraid the new bird won't have a quiet life like I wish for all my birds. I can assure you, she is never alone, she constantly "chats" with Ivy when she is in her cage and she spends around 5 hours a day with me and Ivy outside but I can't put them together because as I said before, Ivy attacks. It was the best solution I could find for them...
sofiacb
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Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Number of Birds Owned: 2
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby liz » Mon Feb 20, 2017 6:43 pm

sofiacb wrote:She won't be able to flap? I though they could still land in safety if they ever fall from somewhere...

She is in a separate cage from Ivy because Ivy is super territorial and will bite Rosie if she goes in her cage. They spend a lot of time together outside because I let them out at the same time and they cudddle and clean each other.

The problem is her flight isn't controlled she just goes in circles and in a very weird position with her legs streached out, you can see she is scared because doesn't know where or how to land.




You know she is scared but she still wants to fly. She is doing the circles knowing there is no wall for her to hit. She has to learn the room like a blind person. Don't change the furniture.
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Flight: Yes

Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby sofiacb » Mon Feb 20, 2017 7:00 pm

I never changed the furniture, I let them out in my kitchen, so that is not a problem. But she takes off very rarely, like two/three times a month.
And do you think a small bird like a lovebird specially being blind is capable of memorizing such a big thing as a room? Specially, having to memorize not only distances but also depth and considering the number of times she takes off? I place her in the same place in the counter everyday and she still falls from it sometimes. I'm honestly asking, because I don't think she could ever do that.

And besides, my problem is that, when she does try to fly, she hits things and my fear is that, while she is exploring her surrondings she is gonna hit her head really hard and be really, really hurt.
sofiacb
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Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Number of Birds Owned: 2
Types of Birds Owned: Lovebirds
Flight: Yes

Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby Pajarita » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:30 pm

Well, although I do think that a blind bird could learn a largish environment as long as nothing is ever moved around, if she only flies two or three times a month and only when she is overly excited, that will not give her enough 'practice'.

I still think that a mate would benefit her greatly. I've had several handicapped birds and all of them did great with mates. I had two budgies (brother and sister) that had their legs so splayed that they would actually lie on their chest and belly with their legs up in the air in the shape of a V, they both had mates and never had a problem (they had found the way to perch by grabbing the bars of two sides of a cage, right at the corner). I had a bird that had a leg shorter than the other and her mate would perch on her 'short' side so she could lean her body against his side and he would stand there, holding part of her weight, for hours and hours. I had a male lovebird that had been starved and ended up with such severe chronic stargazing that he could only eat if things were hanged from the top of his cage and he still managed to woo and keep a mate. I had an amazon hen that had such large cholesterol deposits in her eyes that she, literally, only had peripheral vision, and her mate, as old as she was, had severe arthritis in his toes and feet and could not perch properly but they still loved each other and spent every second together. Nature ordained that parrots have mates and made it so they love each other so much that their lives are not completely fulfilled unless they do so, even when they have disabilities, this directive is too strong to ignore in terms of quality of life -especially with aviary species that never really mate bond with humans.
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby liz » Tue Feb 21, 2017 2:23 pm

I agree with Pajarita. Everyone should have a friend. The new one will understand her disability and comfort her.
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Re: Clipping my blind lovebird's wings?

Postby Rmoses » Sun Feb 26, 2017 7:09 pm

Let's see, I'm blind, then you want to cut my wings off, the only thing I have left are my feet, are they safe? If the bird is going to fly let it. Will it get hurt, maybe. But I would imagine the life it has is better and already longer than it would have been if it were in the wild. It's maybe that you are trying to soothe your own feelings rather than the birds. Sorry, I don't mean to be mean to you, just realistic.
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