If you’ve come to visit us recently, odds are you’ve met our new bird, Howie. Maybe you’ve seen his special cage at the front desk in reception? Or perhaps you’ve seen him snuggled in a scarf around our neck? Regardless of how you’ve met Howie, you’ll understand exactly why we all fell in love with him.
Howie is a 1 year old male Budgie that came in for an examination towards the end of November 2016. His caretakers reported that he was having difficulty using his legs. After Dr. Schild thoroughly examined him, she concluded that he was thin and had a neurological issue, likely from the spine, which results in Howie having difficulty standing completely upright (“splay” legs). No denying it, he was a bird that was going to require extra care and responsibility for the rest of his life. Unfortunately, Howie’s caretaker was unable to commit to the sort of specialized care he would need. Given the situation, the only other option for Howie was humane euthanasia. Thanks to Dr. Schild though, Howie got a second chance! Dr. Schild couldn’t help but notice his sweet nature and zest for life, despite his difficulties. Howie’s caretaker was offered the option of adopting him to our care.
Howie has been doing quite well at the clinic so far. He LOVES to eat and has been steadily gaining weight (typically 1 gram per day) since being with us. He is in a smaller “one-level” cage with all of his necessities kept at the bottom as he (at this point) is unable to perch very well. Even though he has difficulty using his legs properly, that doesn’t stop Howie from moving around (a lot) – he really enjoys climbing up the sides of his cage using his beak. Wondering about the title of this post? Howie has his own version of perching where he clings to the side of the cage but places one wing over his perch (we lovingly tease that he’s trying to be a real bird). When he isn’t motoring around the bottom or the sides of his cage, he’s usually sleeping in a scarf around one of our necks, quietly peeping to himself. Like a lot of birds, he likes a little sweet talking from his ladies – and trust us, there’s no shortage of that in his life. Needless to say, we’ve all fallen in love with Howie and hope he will continue to improve and live life as much like a “real bird” as he can. Go Howie!