Rio came to live with us in January of this year at the age of approx. four and a half months old, he is a Blue & Gold Macaw. So far Rio has been quite the character we are bonding very well I just need to pay attention to his body language a bit more but we'll get there together. He was hand reared by a long time breeder who lives near me. A couple of weeks ago (on a Sunday) I installed a replacement main perch plus a shorter one in his cage (Beech Dowel) He likes to chew and destroy his toys and promptly went to work on the shorter perch Sunday evening and Monday, come Monday evening a quiet bird not purring or beak scraping before settling down. Keep an eye. Tuesday morning had his breakfast though not 100% less climbing about, that evening we had a friend visit who was from afar but was staying with another friend, she had come to see Rio as she had hand reared many parrots, cockies and macaws over previous years, by this point Rio was only drinking, interested in food but not ingesting, very subdued then he started vomiting and my friend was in agreement a vets visit was necessary, that evening I installed a heat emitter over him to keep him warmer and I turned the heating on. I have a regular local vet for my dogs but these vets had recommended an exotic vet when I first obtained Rio about three quarters of an hours drive away (no hardship for me)so I registered Rio with them though at this stage he hadn't had a visit. I called them on the Wednesday morning not wanting a phone consultation but advice, finally getting to speak with the vet direct they advised he needed seeing that day but they couldn't see him! They recommended another vet 2 hours away, not for me. I new of another vet who was an exotic specialist so I phoned them, he returned my call an hour or so later and advised he be taken in that afternoon which my wife did, at this point she hadn't handled him, with no desire to, having received some nasty bites from a Grey we had many years ago. Anyway carry crate ready she managed to get him in and no bites! he really wasn't well. The vets initial concern he may have a blockage from shredding his perch so that evening Rio had an x-ray, fluids given under the skin for dehydration and blood taken for tests x-ray didn't show anything and the bloods showed a protein imbalance likely cause lack of food, the vet discussed all with me and asked if Rio had been away or in the company of other birds to which my answers to both were no, the vet then went on to ask if I had heard of PDD Proventricular Dilation Disease also known as the Avian Borna Virus, which I hadn't, he said some of the symptoms were similar, he would take more blood the following day for testing. Rio stayed in over night (it was the best place for him at this time). On to Google for PDD, Oh S**t. The following morning Thursday another x-ray this time with barium no blockage barium passed all the way through later, the vet was also able to pass an endosope into Rio's Stomach checking the Crop too, stomach was looking sore nothing showing in the crop. The vet took measurements of the Proventriculus to compare with another part, I believe the keel which this was telling him it was unlikely PDD but he couldn't be sure without the blood results. So along with the continuation of rehydration under the skin he now started on anti vomiting meds and Nystatin anti fungal suspension along with syringe feeding Critical care formula a small amount Thursday evening. The Bloods were sent off on Thursday along with a swab from the stomach for testing and would take 4/5 days for the results. If the Blood comes back positive to the Borna Virus then there is no hope. Friday morning having spoken with the vet things were more positive and Rio was a delight with everyone, the vet was going to increase his food Later he told me too much too soon he vomited it up. Back to a smaller amount, speaking with the vet Friday evening he was happy with the fact I could hand rear having reared a GMR from 5 days old and that Rio would be better at home, at this stage apart from that they didn't have anyone in after Saturday lunch time for over weekend care. Rio came home Saturday morning (may I add with the vets personal phone number if we had any further problems over the weekend) we continued with the Critical Care Saturday, Sunday I went out to get some hand rearing formula not a chance! so to Tesco and baby food, it was a grain mixture and a fruit mixture with a smidgeon of smooth peanut butter mixed up with the Critical care formula Rio relished it over the next few days on the Tuesday I stopped the anti vomiting and Wednesday I stopped the anti fungal, incidentally Roudy Bush hand rearing formula was delivered to me from Scarlett on the Tuesday so the baby mix was ceased, Wednesday normal food was introduced which Rio tucked into with no ill effects and his weight was back on the increase but continued with the hand rearing formula. Thursday I spoke with the vet to advise him all was going well, no results yet. Friday morning the vet called me the results were in and Rio is clear of the Borna Virus, 'and breath,' excellent news the culture was also clear. When Rio went into the vets on the Wednesday evening he was weighed at 1011 grams and was already thin over the next few days he went down to 970 grams I weighed him before the vet called that Friday morning he was 1011 grams! It is likely we will never know what the cause was the vet said it may have been a sickness which would normally clear after 3/4days but in Rio's case it hit hard and took longer to clear, the problem with leaving things to take their course can have serious knock on effects like kidney problems so in my opinion you cant leave it too long before getting professional help. My new vet was outstanding in his care and treatment for Rio and will continue to be Rio's Doc from now on. Having had several types of parrot like birds over the years, though none for the last 15 years or so, I decided to take out Insurance for him knowing full well when a bird gets sick it happens very quickly and vets prices can go up as quick to get the right help and treatments I'm so glad I did on this occasion.