NOLA Pets: Meet the Bird Whisperer

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METAIRIE, La. (WGNO) – Most people who have pets — have a cat or a dog.  But when you’ve got a sick parrot, we know just the place to go.  The West Esplanade Veterinary Clinic and Bird Hospital in Metairie, where the director knows just what to do with an uncooperative patient.

Meet Dr. Gregory Rich and his patient, Max.  Max is a 57-year-old Amazon parrot.

Parrots live about as long as humans do so at 57 Max has all the ailments an old person might have: arthritis, sore feet and he’s cranky.

Still something else was bothering the bird, and Dr. Gregory Rich figured it out.

“It’s just an overall exam of looking in the mouth, making sure there’s no mucous, no blood,” said Dr. Rich.

Older birds, like Max, need a special diet and without the right food, he barely has enough energy to squawk.

“This is the diet Max was on originally which was primarily a seed-based diet with some dried carrots and almonds and peanuts in there,” Dr. Rich said.

But the trouble is nuts are high in fats, but not so great in terms of overall nutrition.

“Max is now eating Zupreem which is a commercialized pellet ration for birds. It supplies all the nutrients parrots need,” according to Dr. Rich.



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