I lost an older exhibition budgie hen (around 6 years old at least, was older when I bought her) to uterine rupture about a year ago. Now I've got another one, about the same age, showing signs of the same thing. I realize the implications that she was bred too long or under bad conditions. I only wish I could change that now. Has anyone here had experience with this sort of thing who can give me any tips on preventing this? (extra diet supplements or anything) I'm just trying to keep her comfortable now.
The most obvious sign is an enlarged abdomen, and the hen is less energetic, and moody. If you feel the abdomen, you can feel it is spongy, not hard like with egg binding. From what I've seen, they act a little like when they are egg bound, but not anywhere near as bad. Sometimes it happens as a direct result of egg binding but my first hen had never been egg bound while I had her, so I guess it was because she was a worn out breeder. The swelling gradually grows, and the hen usually dies. I think there may be a surgery, to save the bird, but it is more of a risk than it is worth, I think.
I'm keeping an eye on the hen, and if she is in obvious pain, I'll put her down rather than letting it draw on. I just wish I knew how to stop it from happening!
oh Liz im so sorry to read this. Have been trying to google it but to be truthful never heard of it and so wasnt sure what i was lookin for, but found a few links here, hope some of these may be of use to you
Uterine rupture is usually secondary to egg binding - they strain so hard to get the egg out, or the egg puts so much pressure on the uterine wall that it dies and weakens. Infection of the reproductive tract can also cause it to weaken.
What exactly are the 'signs' your friend has spoken of, and how was it diagnosed the first time? Uterine rupture is generally something you can't really tell from the outside (unless it's hanging outside the body.. most often the bird looks like it gets better and then dies suddenly). Signs of egg binding usually occur first.
From one of I disagreeignments:
Egg binding and dystocia Predisposing factors Oviduct muscle dysfunction (metabolic disease of calcium; selenium or vitamin E deficiency) Malformed egg (misshapen, soft shelled - due to calcium deficiency) Excessive egg production (depleting calcium reserves) Nutritional insufficiency Metritis (infection of the uterus) Previous oviduct damage/infection Obesity, lack of exercise Neoplasia (lipoma, oviduct tumour) or persistent cystic right oviduct Concurrent stress Genetics Inappropriate nesting Senility First egg Breeding out of season Your friend should correct any of these that they think could be contributing. How is the calcium? She/he should give a supplement (calcivet) if they haven't already.
The little one should be taken to the vet just to be sure. The avian vet will be able to figure out if it's an egg-related problem, due to some infection or something else.
& this is the other response:
Calcium, I would say would be the major one to look out for as calcium is required for the muscles to contract. With out calcium muscles cannot move. Calcium is also required to send nerve impulses from nerve to nerve or nerve to muscle. Thus a bird (or any animal) deficient in calcium is not able to contact its uterus as easily and as time goes on and they continue to struggle they use up more calcium until they cannot push no more. Calcium deficiencies can come about from a lack of calcium in the diet or overuse of calcium, which would be the case in extended periods of breeding, or problems with metabolising calcium properly, such as problems in the parathyroid gland (which can be caused by any number of things), or problems with uptake. With Cacium also comes the Vitamin D which is needed for calcium metabolism.
A prolapsed uterus isn't the end of life for a bird. Saffy had a prolapse, luckily she did so while she was at the hospital and the vet successfully operated on her and put the uterus back inside. She has weak abdominal muscles now though, which is a lack of calcium thing and her toenails are growing fast so it looks like she may have liver problems which could be the reason for Saffy's calcium problems.
In response, both seem to be dealing with uterine prolapse... (where organs fall down or slip out of place) which is something completely different. I looked up uterine prolapse, and it didn't match her at all.
I believe this was a list of causes? Got a little confused.
Egg binding and dystocia - Did have issues once. Predisposing factors Oviduct muscle dysfunction (metabolic disease of calcium; selenium or vitamin E deficiency) - They have a varied diet with veggies, lettuce, etc. Malformed egg (misshapen, soft shelled - due to calcium deficiency) - Happened once, soft shelled, and was cleared up quickly after providing cuttlebone in more places.Excessive egg production (depleting calcium reserves) - I've only bred her once per season, for two seasons, and she laid 4 eggs each time. Nutritional insufficiency - Again, I don't think so. Metritis (infection of the uterus) - ? Previous oviduct damage/infection - Possible. Obesity, lack of exercise- Lives in a large aviary, breast bone can be felt as normal. Neoplasia (lipoma, oviduct tumour) or persistent cystic right oviduct - No obvious tumours. Concurrent stress - Always possible. Genetics - I didn't breed her, so I don't know. Inappropriate nesting - She has had multiple nest boxes to choose from both seasons, with plenty of space. Senility- She isn't that old. First egg - No. Breeding out of season - I don't allow that. Calcium- Mineral blocks and cuttlebone are always available.
Anna has not produced any eggs since September, (when I usually start breeding) when she laid 4 infertile eggs, including one softshell. So it has been 6 months since breeding, and she has appeared to be in good health right up until about a week ago.
Also, I got my information about uterine rupture from a budgie breeding book and different articles on reproductive health.
A speculation on my part regarding the cause: If indeed I have a DNA based virus in the aviary, it could have been that which weakened her reproductive system, since they are passed on through bubs and breeders.
From my text book: A convex bulging of the abdominal wall is indicative of a space-occupying mass (eg, egg, neoplasm, ascites, enlarged organ). With liver enlargement, ascites, proventricular or ventricular distension or displacement, egg development, egg-related peritonitis or mass formation, the abdomen may appear distended, doughy and convex.
Edit - better put some of those terms into plain english. neoplasm = cancer, ascites = fluid in the abdomen, ventriculus = stomach, peritonitis = infection of the inner abdominl wall