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Home > Birds > Diarrhea in Lovebirds: 5 Reasons & What to Do

Diarrhea in Lovebirds: 5 Reasons & What to Do

Lilian’s Lovebirds lovebird sounds

We all know that bird poop is a little—well—messy. No matter what, all birds combine their urine and feces, releasing them at the same time. But what happens when it’s suspiciously runny? What exactly does diarrhea look like in lovebirds?

Diarrhea is actually an infrequent phenomenon in lovebirds. When it comes to your lovebirds’ excrements, chances are much more likely that it’s just a little watery and nothing more. But let’s explore what causes diarrhea, how to tell the difference, and how to prevent it entirely.

divider-birds Healthy Poop in Lovebirds

When birds eliminate waste, both urine and feces are combined. Thus, it is entirely normal for all bird stool to be loose and watery—differing from other mammals. Even still, lovebirds can have diarrhea just like anything or anyone else.

Diarrhea in Lovebirds: What to Look For

lovebirds on ground
Image Credit: Mirko Toller, Pixabay

If your bird is actually experiencing diarrhea bouts, you can look for these accompanying factors:

  • Stained feathers around the vent: Hold your bird up and gently lift its tail feathers. If you notice any stains on the surrounding feathers surrounding the vent, this would indicate diarrhea. Regular elimination does not cause any staining.
  • Lethargy: If you notice that your bird doesn’t have the energy it once did, there could be a bigger problem. Shutting the eyes often like they are falling asleep, along with ruffling feathers, is an indicator that there is another issue at play.
  • Lack of appetite: Is your bird not eating the way they should or acting disinterested in their favorite snacks? Loss of appetite accompanied by diarrhea could point to a lot of things going wrong under the radar. Not eating can quickly lead to malnutrition, which could have dire consequences.

The 5 Reasons Your Lovebird Could Have Diarrhea

This is not an exhaustive list of reasons why your bird might be experiencing diarrhea. However, these are the most common reasons so you can act appropriately.

1. Stress

Image Credit: Bogdanova, Shutterstock

Just like us, our beloved birds can experience high-stress situations. And when they do, their bodies react accordingly. If you notice other signs that might point to stress, it could be a direct cause of diarrhea.

Other signs of stress include:

  • Solution: Remove any triggers that could cause your lovebirds stress. Lovebirds don’t enjoy a lot of chaos, loud noise, or other ruckuses from the outside. So, if you have to, move them to a quieter space where they can feel relaxed.

2. Poor Diet

If your lovebird is eating incorrectly or overeating certain food items, it can cause diarrhea. Typically, it’s something watery and acidic, like fruit.

  • Solution: Always make sure commercial pellets are the staple in your bird’s diet. Make sure that you are giving your bird appropriate portions of regular food and go light on treats. Try to cut back on acidic and watery foods, which can irritate your bird’s system in large amounts.

3. Parasites

Black-Cheeked Lovebirds
Image Credit: Smiler99, Shutterstock

If your lovebird has parasites in its system, this can cause diarrhea after some time. Usually, other signs of parasites include:

  • Malnutrition
  • Feather plucking
  • Increased vocalization
  • Weight loss
  • Solution: If you suspect parasites, you can contact your avian veterinarian, who will likely prescribe antibiotics to get rid of the infection.

4. Organ Issues

Only your veterinarian can determine whether your lovebird has any problems with its internal organs. But sometimes, diarrhea can point to a direct issue with the liver or kidneys.

  • Solution: With the help of your veterinarian, you can determine a proper route of care that can improve the quality of life of your bird. Sometimes specific organ issues have no absolute resolve but are manageable through treatment.

5. Consuming Pesticides

Lovebirds eating
Image Credit: Alexas_Fotos, Pixabay

There is a reason that we are taught to wash our fruits and vegetables. Many of these items contain very harmful pesticides that are invisible to the naked eye. If you have been feeding your lovebird non-organic garden matter, it could be upsetting their gastrointestinal tract.

  • Solution: Start to thoroughly wash your fruits and vegetables before serving them to your lovebird. If possible, buy organic to avoid this problem.

divider-birds Final Thoughts

The bottom line is that it’s essential to make sure that your lovebird is safe and healthy. If they have any changes in potty habits, it’s important to contact your veterinarian to make sure that everything is okay.

Sometimes it might just be something they ate, and all will go back to normal in no time. But it is best to double-check to make sure you’re not missing a more significant issue.

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Featured Image Credit by: Ward Poppe, Shutterstock

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