Emergency surgery a success for parakeet sucked into vacuum cleaner

Anesthesia for a parakeet

The Milton owner of an 8-year-old parakeet rushed the "bloodied, barely conscious" bird to Angell Animal Medical Center last month after she turned on a shop vac - not realizing the budgie had crawled into the device moments before. In a statement, Angell says veterinarians first stabilized Marie Margarone's Birdie, then got the pet into surgery:

X-rays confirmed that Birdie's left wing was so badly fractured that the only way to save her was to partially amputate the limb. On Wednesday, Feb. 26, Dr. Simone-Freilicher - one of two board-certified avian and exotic veterinarians at Angell - performed a delicate one-hour operation to remove 25 percent of Birdie's wing. According to Dr. Simone-Freilicher, Birdie soared through the procedure. "Birdie has come a very long way since she sustained these injuries, she said. “I'm hugely impressed with this small bird's strength and resolve and I applaud her owner for doing all she could to get her through the ordeal."

Photo of Birdie being administered anesthesia by MSPCA-Angell.



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    not mentioned: insane cost of surgery

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    One of those things the MSPCA doesn't like to talk about: the cost of treatment/surgery at Angell is INSANE. You'd think that a NON PROFIT that has so many volunteers and solicits donations wouldn't cost you an arm and a leg, right? You'd be wrong...

    I paid nine grand at the Angell

    For surgery to cure my dog's Wobbler's Syndrome. The surgeon, the wonderful Dr.Allen Sisson, was not only a talented surgeon, he never failed to answer my e-mails of concern, sometimes late in the evening.

    Given the fact that I have dealt with many other medical professionals that were nowhere as conscientious in dealing with human maladies as the wonderful professionals at Angell, the costs were unimportant as my dog was able to run and play like he was a puppy again. While it's true that veterinarians are able to put a price on love, I have never felt as if I was ever ripped off at Angell.

    INSANE compared to what?

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    INSANE compared to what? Whom do you suppose is "profiting?" Do you think the vets at Angell are getting rich? The technicians? We are fortunate to have a world-class teaching facility in Boston, in 99.99% of the world Birdie's owner would have been shit out of luck.

    Vets gotta make a living too

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    Remember, veterinarians get as much training as human doctors. They have student loans to repay along with the costs of living that the rest of us do. The science of veterinary care, just as with human care, is constantly evolving and vets need continuing education and equipment upgrades. And specific to the MSPCA, they do in fact offer assitance for those pet owners who need it for caring for their animal companions; http://www.mspca.org/programs/help-pet-care-assistance.html

    anon 6:25PM

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    So, do you really think that the vets and support staff at Angell are all volunteers? When's the last time you saw your human volunteer doctor? How was his/her volunteer nurse? Did you receive good treatment? You know, Dana Farber solicits donations as well, but I wouldn't necessarily expect free treatment. Perhaps you would.

    It's not just Angell,

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    It's not just Angell, veterinary care is very expensive nowadays. Best to do everything you can to keep your pets healthy so that you don't need their services. The emergency places are hit or miss, I don't know about Angell but the one I went to tends to be staffed by young interns, especially on the weekends and off shifts.
    That being said, I appreciate that they are there 24/7 if something happens.
    I find this homeopathic veterinarian's website very informative www.vitalanimal.com

    Homeopathic Vet Care

    By on

    You might as well break out the candles, pray over your pet, and wave your hands in a magic way.


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    The homeopathic cure would have been to scrape off a tiny bit of the vacuum cleaner, put it in water, shake it up, dump out most of the water, add more water, shake it up, etc. about 10 times, then apply this magical "medicine" to the bird while watching it die.

    I would keep an open mind and

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    I would keep an open mind and do some research, a lot of what the homeopathic veterinarians have to say makes sense.
    Or instead, keep vaccinating them every year and see what happens.


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    That's kind of like having an open mind on the idea the earth is 6,000 years old. Just no.

    It's very strange that people

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    It's very strange that people will pay thousands of dollars to save a parakeet's life but don't think twice about killing chickens by the thousands.

    How do you know?

    The owner could have been a vegetarian.

    Unless you're simply referring to how odd it is that the people that make up society can have such varying opinions.

    Please Stop

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    You're giving me flashbacks to "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?"


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    I didn't catch your reference at first. Well played.

    News Flash! Vacuum Cleaner Sucks Up Budgie!

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    Lil disappointed Adam. Had you as a Clash fan.

    I think the Clash actually got the line from a real headline from News of the World or another sordid source.


    Marx was skint, but he had sense, Engels lent him the necessary pence.

    Will hang my head in shame

    By on

    I admit it: Not a Clash fan. Nor did I spend any time trying to come up with a pinning headline. Just one of those days ...

    I'm glad the parakeet in question survived, but

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    how did the parakeet get into the vacuum cleaner in the first place? It sounds as if the owner wasn't watching her parakeet as closely as she should've been.

    Being a bird-owner myself, I admittedly found this story rather unnerving.

    Maybe you can tell us

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    You know a lot more about birds than most here - does this type of bird like to hide in enclosed spaces?

    Nationalized, socialized healthcare for pets

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    Obamacare or Romneycare for pets. At the very least they should qualify for medicaid and for the senior pets, medicare. Maybe MA can be another first in the nation on this issue?

    Yes, vet care is expensive. Vets need to make a living,too. Take care of your mutts, kitty cats, fish, blue rats, and budgies. As for non-profits, I know of multiple homeless (human) shelters that pay their CEOs a princely sum, and lush benefit's packages.

    Cost / Benefit

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    How much does a new parakeet cost? How much did this one-hour surgery cost?

    Such hateful comments! This

    By on

    Such hateful comments! This is a sweet story about an owner who did everything they could to save their pet and the talented vets who performed a life-saving operation on the tiny bird. Accidents happen. No one is perfect and no one can watch their pets 24/7. Thank you Adam for posting it. Sheesh, dammed if you do and dammed if you don't!