Monday, June 29, 2009

CARE will be closed Saturday, July 4

CARE will be closed to the public on Saturday, July 4. Don't worry, though, volunteers will still be coming in to make sure the birds' needs are taken care of and they'll get some special treats to celebrate the holiday.

For your enjoyment, here are a few of the more patriotically-colored birds that have passed through our facility:

Monday, June 22, 2009


Meet Daphne, an incredibly sweet senegal parrot. Daphne was found flying outside, a stray bird. Luckily she was brought to animal control -- a move that likely saved her life since parrots like Daphne can't survive long outside in our climate.

We don't know why Daphne was outside. Perhaps she escaped; perhaps she was let go when her caretakers tired of her (you'd be surprised how frequently that happens, which often means a terrifying death for these tropical birds).

Extensive work was done to try to reunite her with her family, to no avail. If someone was looking for her, she would have been found. Given her gentle personality, it seems likely that she was loved and treated with kindness at some point in her life. We're hoping to bring that to her again by finding her a home where she will be safe.

Daphne is suffering from a mouth infection, so she won't be up for adoption until she gets a clean bill of health -- probably in about a month.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

2008 in review

2008 was another busy year for CARE. 366 animals (mostly birds) were surrendered to us. That's exactly one for every day of the year (it was a leap year!)The breakdown is as follows:

8 African greys
14 Amazons
83 Budgies
10 Canaries
49 Cockatiels
18 Cockatoos
23 Conures
15 Doves
3 Eclectus
73 Finches
2 Lories
12 Lovebirds
13 Macaws
23 Parakeets
1 Parrotlet
11 Pionus
2 Poicephalus
1 Rosella
1 Polish Chicken
2 Bearded Dragons
1 Iguana
1 Leopard Gecko

So far this year, we've seen no signs of things slowing down. We have many wonderful birds currently up for adoption.As always, if you're thinking of adding a bird to your home, consider adoption. Many of the birds surrendered to us do not have major behavioral issues. They were just unlucky enough to land in a home that didn't understand all that having a parrot entails.
Thanks again to all of our volunteers, donors, and customers for helping us to remain open. These birds are getting second, third, or more, chances because of you.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Introducing Charlie

Anyone who's visited CARE in the past 7 months may recognize Charlie, a beautiful female blue-and-gold macaw, pictured here. Note this is not the same Charlie who spent much of 2004-2005 with us before finding a wonderful home and who will still occasionally accompany CARE on educational outings. This Charlie's story is much more tragic.Before she was surrendered here, she was living in an attic. Not surprisingly, she was in a too-small cage, had no toys, and fed an inadequate diet.

We noticed there was something wrong with her almost immediately -- she couldn't put any weight on. As always, we vetted her right away and found that she had symptoms of aspergillosis plus she had something in her ventriculus. We did a barium series and the barium wouldn't move through, which meant surgery. As you probably know, surgery is extremely risky in birds and we weren't sure whether she'd make it through the anesthesia.

She had her surgery and our vet found lots of pieces of food impacted in her ventriculus. Our amazing vet removed it all and stitched Charlie back up. She then was put on antibiotics for one month and anti-fungals for two months.

Her weight continued to decline. It was very noticeable just looking at her; her keel was razor-sharp and protruded. We did everything we could to fatten her up. She went through a period of gaining weight, only to lose it shortly after.

Once she was off all of the medications, she started to gain some weight back. However, she still didn't appear completely healthy. It was time for her recheck anyway, so we returned to the vet with the feeling that something was still not quite right.

Our vet scoped her and found that her air sacs are very badly scarred, probably due to living in a home with smokers. There is nothing that can be done about this; we just have to make sure she goes to a completely non-smoking home. Everything else looked good and she has been released from vet care and is ready to go to her new home.

She may always be on the thin side, but the most important thing for her is "absolutely no cigarette smoke." Even better would be a home with an air cleaner and without dusty birds (cockatoos, greys, etc.)

It's sad that she's had to go through what she's gone through because someone didn't know enough to keep her out of an attic (basements too) and smoked around her. We know how bad smoking is for humans, can you imagine what it does to a bird's air sacs and lungs? There's truth in the phrase "canary in a coal mine."

Finally, though, after six months of two surgeries and medications, we can find Charlie a good home. If you think that might be you, please stop by to meet her!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Cleo & Henry Update

The last we'd left the drama of Cleo and Henry, they'd started sharing a cage, but Cleo was still grieving Millie. For several weeks, there was no agression between Cleo and Henry, but neither was there true affection. They were basically cohabiting.

Everything changed late last week.

Cleo and Henry started allopreening, sitting on the same perch, and attempting to be near each other as often as possible.

They aren't yet as close as Millie and Cleo were, but we're hoping that, with time, they'll get there.

It was heartbreaking watching Cleo grieve and not be able to do anything to cheer him up.

Cleo and Henry need to stay together; they will either be adopted out or will stay with us if we can't find the right home.

They're looking for a home that will just allow them to be birds. They have each other and prefer their own company to that of humans.