by Heike Ewing Ott
The recommended practice is to quarantine any new parrots in your home from your existing birds for a minimum of 30 days to prevent the spread of disease. This article shares some tips and comments related to quarantining birds.
I answered Sheryl’s message off the list and I don’t think it’s too likely that Gabby’s at risk, but I’d like to mention to all of you that a separate room in a house that has central heat and air is NOT quarantine.
Some of the organsims that cause disease in parrots, most notably chlamydia, can be airborne. This means that true quarantine requires a separate building, or a room that has its own self-contained air supply and does not exchange air with the rest of the house. This is why Sherri is keeping Bo Bo at the office, and why many large breeders have separate quarantine buildings.
Now, before all of you have a fit, let me make a couple of other points:
A hand-fed baby from a closed, clean, tested aviary is generally not a risk.
A bird that has been a pet in a single-bird household and has not been exposed to other birds for a year or more is generally safe.
Now most of you are thinking, “Good Grief! I don’t have a separate quarantine building! I’m just a pet owner..” Well, I don’t either, but if I have a concern about a particular new bird, I have several options:
- Board it at my vet
- Ask a non-bird-owning friend to keep it for me for 30 days
- Ask a breeder friend that DOES have a quarantine facility to quarantine it for me.
- Keep the bird at my work, my SO’s work, or a friend’s work
Also, note that I am not terribly strict about the 30 days if I have the appropriate medical tests (fecal check, CBC, Polyoma, Chlamydia, PBFD) done and they all come back good.