Goitre in budgies and other birds is a sac-shaped enlargement of the oesophagus. There the grains are collected and softened. However, if e.g. nibbled-off fibres collect there, which are then gradually colonised by bacteria, this can result in goitre inflammation. But that is only one possible reason.
Crop inflammation can be caused by bacteria, fungi , or sometimes parasites .
When inflamed, the goiter mucosa produces a large amount of a tough, cloudy mucus.
Particularly often, budgies are affected, which suffer froma chronic vitamin A deficiency due toan unbalanced diet (no fresh food) and are particularly susceptible to germs.
One of the most common causes are water bowls that are not cleaned regularly and especially the supposedly convenient water dispensers, because bacteria and fungi can multiply there particularly easily.
Other causes may include:
- Foreign bodies (e.g. swallowed fibers / chewed off plastic parts)
- highly acidic fruit (damage to the mucous membrane)
- Mirrors or plastic birds (irritation of the crop mucosa due to regurgitation).
- Vitamin A deficiency (susceptibility to germs)
- Infections (e.g. trichomonads or megabacteria)
A typical sign is gagging and vomiting, which sooner or later makes the head feathers sticky from the crop mucus (and also grains).
In addition, diarrhea may also occur if the germs enter the intestine and colonize there.
The budgies then often sit fluffed up and appear apathetic.
As a first aid and until complete recovery, the budgie needs additional heat. For this it should be illuminated by a dark radiator day and night.
Before antibiotic treatment, the veterinarian will or should take a goiter swab and send it to a laboratory to determine the type of pathogen. Only in this way is targeted therapy possible.
Until the laboratory results are available, administration of a well-tolerated antibiotic is already started. Once the pathogen type is known , therapy is switched to an appropriate, effective antibiotic.
Until the inflammation has healed, the budgie is given suitable soft food that does not irritate the crop.
Injections of vitamin A over several weeks can stabilize the goiter epithelium.
Afterwards it is recommended to “feed up” the weakened budgie again over several weeks, so that it does not suffer a relapse.