Here’s Why Birds Need Their Nails Trimmed
Do you have a pet bird, or are you thinking of getting one? Do you know everything you need to do to take care of your pet’s hygiene and upkeep? Did you know pet birds need to have their nails trimmed regularly for a variety of reasons?
Pet parents who are used to dogs and cats may not understand all the reasons why birds need regular nail trims. In the article below, we’ll give you some of the most important reasons you should pay attention to your bird’s nail health, so you can recognize your pet’s needs more easily. Read on to find out more!
Lack of Natural Nail Trimming
When birds fly and perch in the wild, they use their toenails to grip onto a variety of surfaces, both smooth and rough. In captivity, however, birds do not have access to this wide range of different perching surfaces, and so their nails are not exposed to the same textures.
Perching and gripping in the wild helps keep bird toenails short and trim. In captivity, it is up to pet parents to make sure their birds have short nails instead. You can provide this much-needed grooming for your pet to help simulate the experience they would have in the wild.
Risk of Nail Scratches
Birds who have very long toenails may risk scratching themselves. If your bird’s nails are not trimmed regularly, there is a chance they could cause an injury to themselves or to any other birds that share the same living space.
Additionally, birds with nails that are not trimmed often enough can risk scratching their human family members just as easily. If you do not want to risk being scratched or injured by your bird, it’s important to have their nails trimmed as often as recommended by your exotic vet. This way, their nails will not be able to hurt you or themselves.
Risk of Flaking
Although less of a problem than some other conditions and issues on this list, a bird’s toenails may flake when they are allowed to grow too long. Flaking may not be painful and may not cause severe blood loss like nail damage could, but it is still a risk that can be easily mitigated by trimming your bird’s nails.
When a bird’s nails flake too much, they can become more easily caught on clothing and items. The bird’s nails may also splinter as they flake, which can contribute to infections within the nail that may even spread to the foot if left untreated for too long.
Risk of Catching Nails on Items
When a bird’s nails are allowed to grow too long, that bird has an increased risk of catching their nails on items around the home or in the cage. The bird’s nails could also become trapped or caught within the bars of the cage itself.
By keeping up with regular nail trims for your pet bird, you can decrease the risk that they may catch their toenails on items, furniture, or clothing. Your pet will not risk hurting themselves, and you will not risk damage to your home at the same time.
Risk of Losing a Nail
One of the most crucial reasons to keep up with a bird’s nail trimming needs is the risk of nail loss. When a bird loses a toenail, it causes significant pain and a lot of bleeding. Birds may be unable to perch or stand up for some time after losing a toenail. Additionally, this problem can cause the whole toe to break.
In some very severe instances, birds may have so much blood loss from a lost toenail that they may die. This condition can be very dangerous and significantly increase a bird’s risk of infection even if the bird survives the ordeal, too.
Checking Feet for Other Issues
Finally, it is important to keep up with your pet bird’s nail trims because this gives you a chance to pay attention to other foot health needs.
If your bird is showing signs of other health problems or conditions, you can notice them more quickly when you take the time to examine their feet closely during a nail trim.
With the help of this information, you should understand your pet bird better than ever before. It’s easy to see why nail trims are so crucial for pet birds, and it’s just as easy to recognize why you need to keep up with this important grooming requirement for your pet, too.
If you feel uncomfortable trimming your bird’s nails yourself, your Boston Veterinary Clinic exotic vet would be able to take care of the process for you. To learn more about exotic pet care listen to our podcast and book a bird nail trim for your pet using the online form today!