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Hi. I have an 8 year old Cockatiel named Bobbin. Bobbin has been going through some tough medical issues the last part of last year and this year. Bobbin has ultimately been diagnosed with kidney disease. We are doing our best to treat and manage this. For the first couple of months of the year he was vomiting and feeling miserable. He saw multiple vets including an avian specialist 2 hours away. The vets felt that kidney disease was causing the vomiting, but we couldn't find anything to stop the vomiting until my local avian vet tried reglan which saved Bobbin's life! I had a Monday morning appointment to take Bobbin in for the Reglan. He looked terrible that morning and I really debated about putting him through another vet visit, but we went. The vet agreed he looked very bad, but gave him the injection. She also ordered an oral Rx of reglan which I picked up later that day. I was absolutely thrilled and amazed when Bobbin responded. The vomiting stopped and he has returned to his totally happy self except for the effects of kidney disease and apparent gout. We are doing our best to manage his kidney disease. After a couple of great months I noticed Bobbin having trouble with balance and with the strength of his feet and legs. This was especially apparent when he would try to move around with his Guinea Pig buddies. The vet drew blood again and found that Bobbin's uric acid was quite elevated. Due to possible side effects from allopurinol and the fact that Bobbin was feeling and acting so good the vet did not want to try allopurinol. She wanted Bobbin to go through a week of fluid injections which we did. Blood was drawn at the end of the fluids and Bobbin's uric acid level was way down although not in the normal range. The vet ordered a low dose prescription of aspirin for Bobbin and has me trying to give him a mixture of corn oil and fax seed oil which I am having trouble getting Bobbin to ingest. After about 5 weeks Bobbin started having trouble with his balance and his feet again. We have just completed another week of fluid injections which did not seem to help much. Bobbin is receiving Epakitin and Azodyl which the avian specialist gave us sprinkled on his food and Kidney Energy drops in his water. I am also giving him black cherry juice and his aspirin. Right now I am monitoring his weight. He seems so happy that I plan on monitoring him closely now and not rocking the boat. I have read threads on this site regarding kidney disease, gout and allopurinol. I appreciate all of this information. I would think that my next step will be allopurinol if Bobbin's condition worsens. Thanks again for this great site!
 

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Thank you for sharing Bobbin's story with us. It is always helpful to everyone to learn more about how different medical conditions are being treated, etc. I don't have any advice to offer- other than the basic, rope perches are easier on tiel's feet, etc. which I'm guessing you already know. I'm glad Bobbin is happy and I hope the treatment continues to help him. Keep us posted on how he is doing. And we love pictures of tiels. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you

Thank you very much. I appreciate learning anything I can that might help Bobbin and I hope it might help someone else to read his history. I wish I had known of Reglan early on. My vet said that the pathologist suggested that she try Reglan to help Bobbin stop vomiting. She gave the pathologist the credit. Hopefully it might help someone else! Thank you for mentioning the rope perches. Bobbin loves Booda soft perches and boings. I have wide ones that really seem to help him. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Wondering how long to try allopurinol

Bobbin's leg grip strength seemed to be decreasing and his wobbliness increasing. I decided I would like to try allopurinol. Bobbin's regular vet in the practice was on vacation. I saw the vet who owns the practice. He did not think Bobbin has gout. He did not see much swelling. I thought I saw swelling. I said that in all of my research it really looked like it would be worthwhile to try allopurinol. The vet did agree to let me do a trial of allopurinol. He did have Bobbin's uric acid level checked and we were both surprised that it came in at 9.4 which is high normal. He did not really think the allopurinol would help. I had a gut feeling that I really wanted to try the allopurinol. The allopurinol had already been ordered and paid for by me so the vet said I can go ahead and try it. I gave Bobbin his first dose Monday evening. I am giving it every 12 hours. Tonight he received his 4th dose. My problem is that Bobbin's grip seems worse since I have started the allopurinol. I am wondering if anyone here who has had experience with kidney disease, gout and allopurinol in Cockatiels can offer me any guidance. Does it sometimes take awhile for it to help? Is it unusual to notice a worsening in the condition soon after starting the allopurinol? When the uric acid level came back at 9.4 I was wondering if this is very encouraging and maybe the balance problems are related to uric acid crystals which might hopefully be helped by allopurinol and black cherry juice which I am giving. When the uric acid level came back better and the vet said he did not think Bobbin has gout I asked him what would be causing the wobbliness. He said he had no idea. I wold certainly appreciate any thoughts from anyone who has dealt with kidney disease in Cockatiels. I have seen colchicine mentioned and Bobbin's regular vet had mentioned this as a possiblity. Any thoughts would be most welcomed. Thank you.
 

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Is Bobbins' kidney disease completely cured? It's great though that he is happier :) after taking Reglan. Based on your story, the wobling seemed to start after meds started to be administer. I would contact your vet about how long to try allopurinol if Bobbins getting worser.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Vet says there is no real chance of curing kidney disease

As I understand kidney disease there is almost no possibility of curing it. Your best hope is to manage it to keep it from getting worse. The vets tell me by the time symptoms are visible the bird has probably lost 80% of kidney function. This is very sad to me, but I am told a bird can do very well at this level. I just want to try to maintain the remaining kidney function. I will definitely monitor Bobbin's condition closely and will contact vet if condition gets worse. Thanks for your response!
 

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Yes, I too think I would check with the vet about the medication. Hopefully some of our members who are more experienced with medical issues will be on later and can better comment. Sending good thoughts to you and Bobbin. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Starting Colchicine and have appt with Univ of Il brd certified avian specialist

I stopped in to the vet's office last Friday and said I was stopping the allopurinol since it did not seem to help at all. I asked if I could try Colchicine. Vet agreed to let me try it and I have given Bobbin his first dose tonight. I have also made an appointment to see Dr. Welle at the University of Illinois Veterinary Small Animal Clinic on August 12. That was the first available appointment. Bobbin is having so much trouble with his feet and legs. Just no strength. The good news is that he is eating very well although he is not putting on any weight, is bright eyed and happy. I am hoping Dr. Welle may be able to offer some insight that will help Bobbin.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thank you. So far things are not improving at all. In fact Bobbin is worse today. The wobbliness and inability to use his legs and feet are really bad today. I plan to call the vet tomorrow to see if I can get Bobbin in for fluids. It's all I can think of to do for him. This is so sad to see. He ate well tonight when I held all kinds of food for him. Just losing the use of his legs and feet. :-(
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks very much. I took Bobbin in for fluids today and they definitely helped him. Still very wobbly, but he was able to get his balance much better and he was able to steady himself enough so that he could do quite a bit of preening. I'm taking him in for another round of fluids tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Bobbin had his 3rd sub-Q fluids today. They have definitely helped. He is doing much better in terms of his balance and foot strength. Not nearly as wobbly. Will have more fluids on Monday and will have blood drawn next week so that U of I vet will have new bloodwork to review when we go to the University of Illinois Small Animal Clinic
on August 12.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Very bad news for Bobbin

I took Bobbin to see Dr. Welle at the University of Illinois yesterday and we received very bad news. A CT scan revealed that Bobbin has a very large mass in his abdomen. Dr. Welle is not sure whether it is a testicular tumor or a kidney tumor. Either one is very bad. He went over several options with us and as he said they are all, "lousy options." The surgical option would have at best a 20% chance of surviving the surgery. Even if he survived there is a good possibility they could not get all of the tumor. The chances of Bobbin bleeding out during the surgery would be great. They said euthanasia would be an option. There is no way I would consider euthanasia at this point. Bobbin is still bright, alert and eating well and preening as well as he can with his limited foot strength. The tumor is pressing on his sciatic nerve leading to the problems with his feet. The tumor fills a great deal of his right side and that is why his right foot is much worse than the left foot. Dr. Welle prescribed Meloxacam and Gabapentin to try to help keep Bobbin comfortable. I will do everything I can to keep him comfortable and maintain a good quality of life for Bobbin. When I feel that he no longer enjoys his life I will have to make that hard decision to do what is best for Bobbin. Thanks to everyone who has offered care and concern for Bobbin. It is much appreciated.
 

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Oh no, I'm so sorry to hear it :( You've done really well looking after Bobbin. No one could've done better.

I've been on Gabapentin myself, it's supposed to relax the nerves in your body. I hope it does Bobbin good. And I agree with you on not doing the euthenasia just yet - as long as he seems happy and not in pain (or at least not much), it's silly to even consider it.
 
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