Fleas in dogs and cats sound familiar to all. In the case of birds, fleas are common but not widely spoken about. If you are a new bird owner, then you must know about fleas in birds. Fleas in bird’s skins are hardly noticeable, especially in small birds.
Fleas, once infested, can be hard to remove. Your bird will also become so uncomfortable and sleep-deprived. A single flea or mite might become the cause of infections in all your birds. Read this guide thoroughly to understand more about fleas infecting birds.
Can Birds Get Fleas? What are Fleas in Birds?
Fleas are tiny parasites living on the skin of birds and animals. There are different types of fleas. Some fleas are common for birds and animals. If such fleas invade your bird, they slowly spread to other birds and pets in your house.
In birds, these fleas are attached to their skin and stay there for weeks. Bird fleas are not much noticed because of their size. They are much smaller than fleas found in dogs and cats. They suck out the blood of the host and reproduce in their skin.
Symptoms of fleas in birds
Since bird fleas are not visible to the naked eye, there are specific symptoms you birds show in response to flea bites.
- Constant skin irritation
- Excess cleaning of the skin
- Feather damage
Birds are not very much active pets. They tend to be in the same place or just move around their owner. Since there is only limited space for them to fly, they only walk around the house or stay in their cage.
When fleas attack, they attach their mouth to the skin of birds. Their saliva is ejected continuously into the bloodstream of birds. This causes agitation and uneasiness in birds.
You can easily find out if you are birds not resting correctly. In flea attacks, birds do not stay active, but they stay awake without sleeping. This changes their entire sleeping schedule and affects their eating habits.
In the case of small birds, this constant biting might be confusing for them. They tend to move around in irritation and screech a lot.
If your bird is moving around you for no reason, it is good to keep a check.
Constant Skin Irritation
If you have the habit of playing with your bird daily, then you might have noticed that their skin is the same all over, starting from the head to tail.
Once fleas start attacking, their skin will not be the same. If your bird is young, then due to the fleas’ constant irritation, their skin might turn red.
There are even chances for swelling and rashes. You may not know this initially, but it might become a massive headache for you if it starts streaming.
Birds do not know the difference between fleas and their skin. So they tend to bite their skin often when it itches.
If you notice some unknown or rapid bump on your birth skin while playing with them, and it can also be a sign of flea infestation.
Excess cleaning of the skin
Birds typically have the habit of preening themselves in order to protect themselves from fleas, dirt, etc. This is a kind of grooming for them, but if this grooming gets out of hand, then it’s an alarm.
Birds tend to clean themselves only when they are exposed to some kind of dust or outdoor environment. So if your bird keeps preening itself without any exposure to external habitat, it can also be in response to fleas.
During preening, they pluck out the damaged and dirty feathers and through them out. If it is a flea attack, then your bird might be plucking out its feathers frequently in a single day.
However, this change can be easily noticed in birds.
If all the above factors go unnoticed, then your bird will soon develop unhealthy feathers and skin. As a result of constant grooming, your bird might have looked fine with shining feathers before fleas.
When the flea count increases, they appear on considerable numbers in a single place. This will cause disfigurement in their body and feather shapes. In addition to the damage, your birds will also pluck their feathers.
All this will occur only if you ignore the first signs.
How do Fleas infect birds?
Wild birds are mostly prone to fleas. Fleas live on Gardens and small bushes. Birds are most likely to get affected by them when they are out.
Why are pet Birds affected, then? This is because your fleas live everywhere. They might be in your garden too.
Sometimes if you have multiple pets at your home, the fleas might be transmitted. The fleas are different for every pet. Even the fleas affecting a cat and a dog are other, but if it happens to transmit and bite your bird, there might also be an allergic reaction.
Usually, indoor birds do not have the possibility of getting fleas unless they are exposed to any flea living area.
How to prevent Fleas?
The only way to keep please away is by maintaining hygiene. Frequently clean your bird cages and beds.
If you have multiple pets, make sure they are all vaccinated and medicated. If you notice any fleas, immediately take your pet to the doctor. Fleas are tiny and are not readily visible to human eyes. If you can see it abruptly anywhere in your bird’s place, they are in abundance and multiplying.
There are also many sprays available online to keep away fleas. Eucalyptus oil is a natural remedy against fleas. It works well when you mix it with lavender and garlic.
If your pet bird is recently recovering from a flea attack, make sure to keep everything around him clean. If you are using any kind of chemical sprays to keep away fleas, use them cautiously.
Your bird might accidentally take a drop of it.
These fleas may also be dangerous for you. Since they cannot permanently live in humans, they tend to leave a bite. This bite can cause allergies and rashes on your skin.
It is essential to take care of your skin with necessary precautions while caring for your bird.