Night Terrors

Posted By: Dewey's Slave

Night Terrors - 11/11/17 04:04 AM

It's been a while since I posted about Dewey, a 22-year-old U2 whom I rescued from a bad situation last year. She was adopted by a devoted friend for 7 months, and I cared for her when the friend was out of town. We later found it workable to split time between homes so that each had respite. I have her back now full-time for legitimate reasons. We switched her to her familiar (but newer) big cage last week. She awoke in the middle of the following night screaming in terror and I thought that maybe she was disoriented. Now, a week later, a short while after covering her for bedtime, she once again awoke in terror. This is not regular screaming...she is terrified. I lifted the cover and she began searching underneath her wings on both sides, then behaved normally like she does most evenings before bedtime. Is she having nightmares about being caught? Is she in pain? Have any of you had birds with night terrors???
Posted By: RB2sMom

Re: Night Terrors - 11/11/17 01:49 PM

My RB2s used to occasionally fly around their cages and get panicky at night. I think sometimes they hear sounds or see a light or something out the window that scares them. I put one of those blue night lights near their cage so they could see any thing that they perceive that might "scare" them at night. There have been no problems since. This is one of those flat blue type lights that plug into the socket (like the astronauts use in space) that does not light up a whole lot (like little cute white night lights with Christmas tree type bulbs), so they can sleep but still be assured that something is not coming to get them.
Posted By: BE2Cassie

Re: Night Terrors - 11/11/17 02:07 PM

The night light may just be what she needs to feel comfortable. Also you may want to be sure she doesn't have an insect that has taken up residency in her cage at night. If these don't work then a trip to the vet may be in order to rule out anything health related.
Posted By: Dewey's Slave

Re: Night Terrors - 11/11/17 04:44 PM

Thanks for your thoughts. It's possible that she hears something calling outside like a fox, owl or bobcat, and the moon was full the first time so she may have seen a shadow through the black sheet that covers the cage. That she was searching under her wings last evening made me wonder about a spider or insect as well (I offered her a mealworm once and she was scared to death of it). I weighed her this morning (they brought the scale up with the cage) and she's down quite a bit since I last weighed her a few months ago - her other mom had trouble getting her on the scale. She'd also bought a 5-lb bag of pellets that may have gone south by now, although they don't taste or smell bad (I will order a new, smaller bag today). Her appetite for fruits and veggies is also down significantly. The vet is an hour away and Dewey will be less than amenable to being handled...the man who raised her told me she'd been once in 21 years frown. I'll work on getting her weight up over the weekend, create a substitute for the pellets until new ones arrive, and take her to the vet if I sense that these adjustments aren't helping. Question - is it better to get high potency pellets if the bird is underweight? Thanks again for your guidance.
Posted By: BE2Cassie

Re: Night Terrors - 11/12/17 12:10 PM

I would just get the pellets that she eats for now. You can offer new varieties when you know she is healthy. The first thing I would do Monday morning is call the vets. There are two very important indicators of health and sickness in a bird, their droppings and weight. I'm concerned that you had a 5 lb bag of pellets that came with her and you haven't used them yet. It sounds like you are not giving her enough pellets daily. In a year I would have gone through four times that amount of pellets at least. Get her to the vet, weight loss, not eating well, night terrors all during hormone season. Are you positive that she is female? DNA tested or egg laid in the past? With birds you can't wait, they do not show sickness. Once you determine that she is healthy then mess around with her diet, but do give her more to eat now.
She should have a bowl of pellets available to her 24 hours per day.
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