Eye Infection is a common health problem in pet birds, and the main reason for their occurrence is poor hygiene. When a bird rubs its beak with contaminated perches, bacteria can get into the eye and cause infection. Therefore, one of the prevention methods is to periodically clean the birdcage and its accessories, such as perches and feeders. Other reasons can cause eye inflammation, such as vitamin A deficiency, overcrowded aviaries, foreign bodies, eye exposure to strong winds, and dust.
Symptoms of eye infection
Signs of infection include closing the affected eye (usually halfway), watery eyes, swelling of the eyelids, and conjunctivitis.
Note: don’t confuse swelling of the eyelids with the swelling of the face under or above the eye. The latter is caused by sinusitis, while the former is an eye infection.
Eye infection treatment
Any bird suffering from an eye infection should be moved to a warm place, and treated with anti-inflammatory drugs or antibiotics. If the infection is detected early (redness, swelling, tears without symptoms of yellow or green pus), it is best in this case to use an anti-inflammatory drug.
However, if the infection is in an advanced stage, or if anti-inflammatory drugs don’t work, then antibiotics should be used. It is worth taking the affected bird to the veterinarian to diagnose the condition and give the appropriate treatment and medication because some cases require the prescription of strong antibiotics, especially when the bird’s eye lens or the cornea is injured or affected.
Foreign bodies can also cause an eye infection. In this case, apply a drop of sterile saline in the affected eye, and use antibiotic drops if the eye swells.
Eye conditions and disorders
Keratitis is an inflammation of the cornea caused by viruses, bacteria, or injuries. The inflammation causes redness concentrated around the cornea, and in advance cases, a whitish area appears in the eye over the cornea. It is usually treated with antibiotic eye drops as well, but if there is no response, an operation is required to save the eye from blindness.
Cataract is an opacity of the lens, where the lens loses its clarity and becomes whitish. It is common in canaries due to genetic predisposition, aging, or injuries. This condition is usually treated with an operation as antibiotics don’t usually work. If the condition is left untreated, the bird loses his eyesight.
Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the white part of the eyeball, and it is treated with antiinflammatories or antibiotics depending on the severity of the condition.
Reviewed by Dr. Wael Abu-Hmoud