Your Pet Loss Stories

'In Loving Memory of B.b'

by Rachelle

Yesterday morning when I went to give the birds fresh water and some scrambled eggs, I notice my cockatiel B.b. didn't quite look right.

His feathers were ruffled looking and when he went over to the treat I put in his cage he seemed very lethargic. Right away I pulled him out of his cage and and held him in my hands. I scratched the back of his neck (because that was his favorite thing) and he only mildly responded.

I knew it was bad. I grabbed some of his favorite treats and offered them to him, he seemed too weak to even try to eat them. I started panicking holding my beloved bird in my hands I begged him not to die and to just hold on and pull through what ever had made him sick.

I knew without food or water he would soon die. I put his blanket on a heating pad and told him to hold on I'd be right back. I rushed to the store and bought some bird formula, a syringe and a supplement.

I slowly fed him the mixture out of the syringe by this time his body was almost motionless and eyes were not staying open. So I called an on call Avian vet I was so emotional I could barely speak.

I was explaining to her what was going on and how I couldn't understand how one day he seemed to be fine and talking to me and the next day dying.

She explained that Cockatiels are prey animals in the wild and they hide their illness very well because if they appear to be weak they are guaranteed to be eaten by a predator. So by the time they finally do show that they are sick they are literally slowly dying.

She offered to come in to the hospital and start treatment on him. But she wouldn't
be able to do blood work or give him any antibiotics until he was stable. She said he would most likely be hospitalized for 3 days and it would run around $400 and by the sounds of his condition he may not survive anyway.

I had made the decision to do my best to keep him alive through the night and then bring him into the hospital in the morning. Jason and I didn't have that kind of money to spend on our bird.

I sat at the kitchen table holding B.b. in my hand crying and telling him how sorry I was that I had let him down. I had felt a huge amount of guilt because I couldn't afford to bring him to the hospital.

I continued feeding him with the syringe and giving him glucose water. I did this every two hours because I could only give him small amounts. I stayed home with him all day monitoring his condition trying to keep him stable and it seemed to be working.

He didn't seem to get much better but he wasn't getting any worse either. I stayed up till 3:00am I was so afraid he wasn't going to make it I just didn't want him to feel like he died alone. I couldn't stay up anymore I had to go to bed.

So this morning I woke up at 7:30 ran down stairs and saw his poor little body laying beak down in the bottom of the cage. B.b. had died alone, he may have only been holding on because I wouldn't let him die.

Opie (our canary) is singing a sadder song this morning because his friend that was always there to sing back to him is now silent.


Hope is the thing with feathers, it perches in the soul, and sings the tune without words and never stops at all.

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