Monday, October 10, 2016

What in the world is cloaca prolapse?

The picture at the bottom of this post may be disturbing.  I am only posting it in the hopes that if someone has this issue with their parakeet, they might learn something from this post that can help their keet.  There are many sites with pics just like ours that helped up figure out what was wrong with our keet.  I am so grateful there was.
Over the years, we have had many, many pets.  We have also had many, many pets that have had many, many babies.  We have experienced the birth of a horse/pony and the birth of a mule.  At one point, we had two guinea pigs give birth to at least 5 baby guineas.  An outside cat had a litter of kittens we helped out with.  We have witnessed parakeet eggs being laid, incubated, hatched, and die.  We have found wild bunnies alive with their guts hanging out in our yard and tried to help.  We helped out a Red-bellied woodpecker and a blue jay after a stray cat attack.  We tried to help out a hermit crab that was dragged out of his shell and stabbed in the abdomen by another hermit crab who wanted that shell for himself but last night was a first for us.  A parakeet laying an egg that got stuck.  UGH!  The girls discovered that our only female keet was having trouble passing an egg.  There was blood every where.  Her cage looked like a mini-crime scene, and the egg was literally hanging outside of the keet's body in a bloody mess.  Just entered freak out mode!

So what happened?  This is what we found out.

C17 was navigating the internet and giving us the information and the skinny on what to do.  (She is the web queen, she can find anything and everything).  Of course, going to the vet was the top of the list but since this was 11:30 at night, and I did not have $500, that was not going to work.

My future vet, A15, went into action and between A15 and C17, things went pretty well (I mean pretty well as far as finding our 3 ounce keet a bloody mess).

An oviparous animal (animals that lay eggs-reptiles and amphibians) have an oviduct which is a special part of the bowel.  This is a tube that an egg passes through from an ovary.  

A bird also has a cloaca which is an opening for the urinary tract, genital, and intestinal canals to empty.  The outermost part of the cloaca is called a vent.  When a prolapse occurs, the inner tissue protrudes through the vent opening which can lead to exposed uterus, cloaca, or intestines.  You've got to be kidding.  This is not good or pretty, not at all.

When a bird is straining and having trouble passing an egg, cloaca prolapse can occur.  Calcium deficiency is usually the reason for this to occur.  Female birds need a calcium supplement to help prevent weakening of the muscles.  You can simply put a few pieces of rinsed spinach leaves or a little rinsed kale (organic).  

What we ended up doing was this.  We filled up a small plastic container with warm water, and A15 held the bird/egg in the water.  This actually worked really well.  Our keet seemed to be trying to push the egg out into the water.  Then we bundled her up in a towel, and A15 amazingly massaged the egg out.  What?  She also tried to push back in some of the tissue that was protruding out, OMG!  That did not go so well so she cleaned off the area with water, wrapped her up, and put the heating pad on while the keet was in a dark room.  Back to the internet..........there was too much information on things to try.  We ended up sprinkling sugar on the injured area and rinsing it off 15 minutes later with warm water.  Did I mention it was midnight?  It was midnight.

I was really surprised how calm this bird was for most of this.  I was worried she and I both would died from being stressed out.  We both made it but they still wanted to make a midnight run to an emergency vet but sadly, there was just no way that was going to happen.  We did read that even when birds have emergency surgery for this type of injury, they can still die anyway.

I finally convinced them to leave her alone for the night around 1:30 a.m., even though I went back in at least five times between 2 a.m. and 7 a.m. myself to see if she was okay (okay as in not dead). Luckily, she was alive every check considering all the trauma.

It is amazing that exactly  24 hours later, she is still kicking.  I am so glad.  I know there is still a possibility she will not make it but these girls were veterinarian rock-stars last night.  They are so awesome!  I am kind of awesome too, they get it from me.

This is a good place to learn more.  Pet MD

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