Although allopathic medicine is just a century old, the use of plant treatments such as Aloe vera may be traced back to ancient civilizations. Aloe vera, a succulent member of the lily and onion families, has traditionally been used to cure a number of health issues. This old knowledge is a vital lesson for aviculturists who like to use natural preventative and therapeutic methods for their birds wherever possible. The burn plant, often known as aloe vera, has tremendous healing capabilities that benefit both birds and their carers.
There are hundreds of Aloe vera species, however the Aloe Barbadenis variation is the most often utilized for healing. It includes a wound hormone, which speeds up the repair of wounded surfaces including skin, nails, and feathers. Aloe vera has shown promise as a topical therapy for small wounds and burns. Internally, it boosts immune function, detoxifies, and promotes overall healing. Aloe vera gel has been discovered to be beneficial as an astringent, anti-inflammatory agent, natural antibacterial, coagulating agent, and pain inhibitor by scientists. No other plant has as many medicinal virtues as Aloe vera, which is literally a “pharmacy on a leaf.”
Aloe vera may help birdkeepers in the following ways: * It helps wound healing and avoids infection.
- It is a natural and safe analgesic.
- Aloe spray prevents feather destruction.
- It boosts the immune system, making it a useful preventative medicine.
- It may be used to treat broken nails and blood feathers as a coagulating agent.
- When traditional therapies fail, an aloe cleansing mix may save lives.
ALOE FOR WOUND HEALING — The avoidance of infections caused by skin wounds is critical to a bird’s health. Aviculturists should think about the natural medical properties of Aloe vera as a treatment for such abrasions. Aloe penetrates all skin layers, which contributes to its healing abilities when used to treat burns, wounds, scrapes, abrasions, and other skin disorders. It pulls infection from wounds while also assisting in the regeneration of healthy tissue. Aloe includes anti-inflammatory fatty acids, as well as the wound healing hormones Auxins and Gibberellins. Aloe vera also possesses antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties, which make it a good protection against a wide variety of microorganisms. At least six antiseptic compounds are produced by the Aloe vera plant: lupeol, salicylic acid, urea nitrogen, cinnamonic acid, phenols, and sulfur. All of them are antiseptics since they kill or inhibit molds and other fungi, as well as bacteria and viruses.
Extensive research dating back to the 1930s has proven that Aloe vera gel may not only cure wounds, but also ulcers and burns by forming a protective covering on the damaged regions and speeding up the process of recovery.
ALOE AS AN ANALGETIC It seems that Aloe vera is a well-kept secret that it is an efficient pain reliever. Aloe’s lupeol, salicylic acid, and magnesium have powerful analgesic benefits with no known negative effects, making it beneficial to both birds and carers. Because it does not need hands-on administration, aloe spray is a great painkiller for birds. Tame birds may allow the owner to administer aloe gel or other treatments directly to their wounds, but untame or disturbed birds may be treated more simply using aloe spray. As a result, Aloe is one of the most important products in the Avian first aid kit. Warren Laboratories’ George’s Aloe Spray is available at many health food shops in a reusable eight-ounce spray pump container for about $5.00. Purchase additive-free, steam-distilled aloe juice (not gel) and an affordable spray container to quickly prepare your own spray. Steam-distilled aloe does not need to be diluted or refrigerated and will keep for months.
All birds bite, and all birdkeepers are bitten. Aloe vera gel is the only effective pain reliever for a crushing bite. Fill a rubber finger pad with aloe gel and place it on the affected finger for as long as the pain-killing advantages are required. Five minutes is generally enough to relieve discomfort, but it may be used for as long as necessary. Aloe also aids in the coagulation of blood in wounded tissue, as well as the reduction of swelling and bruising. You may also cut up an Aloe vera leaf and wrap it over an injured finger if you have an older plant with big leaves. Spread a liberal quantity of Aloe vera gel on bite wounds on other regions of the body as frequently as required to reduce discomfort. Aloe products are available at pharmacies, supermarkets, and department shops. Examine labels to find the maximum aloe content with the fewest additives.
ALOE FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF FEATHERS — Aloe vera is often used as a topical spray to treat the inflamed skin of birds who pluck their feathers. When used on parrots who lose their feathers owing to itching skin, this procedure may provide dramatic benefits. Aloe spray may even slow down feather deterioration in situations of psychological plucking since moist feathers seem to inhibit plucking. Feeding Aloe vera to our birds may also assist to avoid feather deterioration. Its success is mostly attributed to magnesium lactate, a substance known to block the production of histamines, which cause skin irritation and itching. I prefer George’s Aloe Spray, but a clean, fresh pump spray bottle filled with steam-distilled aloe would suffice. There are no additives in distilled aloe. According to research, steam distillation eliminates the mucopolysaccharides, which are thought to be the major active element of Aloe vera and helpful when taken internally. When applied as a spray, however, steam-distilled Aloe vera seems to be just as beneficial.
IMMUNOSTIMULANT POWER OF ALOE — The positive benefits of aloe on the avian immune system make it an excellent preventative medicine. Aloe includes at least twenty amino acids, nine enzymes, several polysaccharides, trace elements, growth stimulants, and naturally occurring electrolytes. Extensive Russian study has demonstrated that Aloe vera effectively eliminates toxins from the body and functions as an immune system booster. Aloe vera includes galactomannan, a kind of polysaccharide that functions as an anti-inflammatory and improves cellular membrane fluidity and permeability. Galactomannan appears to attach to a receptor site and activate macrophages, which are immune system cells. Infection-fighting chemicals are secreted by macrophages. Aloe, which contains at least 23 polypeptides (immune stimulators), aids in the treatment of a wide range of immune system problems.
When your birds look sleepy and in need of an energy boost, give them several thin slices of the biggest stalks of the Aloe Barbadensis plant as a reward. Clean aloe juice applied to dry food or drinking water in the ratio of one part aloe juice to three parts pure water may help improve avian energy levels.
ALOE STOPS BROKEN NAILS AND BLOOD FEATHERS FROM BLEEDING — For many years, styptic powder (also known by numerous brand names among birdkeepers) was thought to be the best therapy for birds with broken toenails or bleeding feathers. However, some people have died after being treated with styptic powder for blood feather follicles or open wounds. It has caused tissue death at the site of application in less severe situations. Natural ingredients such as cornstarch, flour, and powdered sugar are equally as efficient at halting bleeding. They are non-toxic, as opposed to styptic powder. Cornstarch is my favorite of these natural ingredients. When coupled with Aloe vera gel, the dry ingredient becomes much more effective. Aloe not only helps to stop the bleeding, but it also aids in the adhesion of the dry medium (such as corn starch) to the bleeding nail or feather follicle. It also contains anti-bacterial characteristics that may help prevent infection, and, most importantly, it relieves pain immediately. To treat a damaged nail or feather follicle, mix a paste using Aloe vera gel and cornstarch, or apply aloe gel directly to the nail or feather follicle before adding cornstarch.
Aside from the risk of tissue burn or poisoning from styptic powder, there is also the risk of birds and their owners breathing the powder, which is a hazardous irritant to the respiratory system. Styptic powder is no longer in my Avian first aid kit. Cornstarch and aloe are much less dangerous and equally as effective as styptic powder. Why have anything on hand that a birdsitter may accidentally apply to your birds’ skin, causing a severe burn, when aloe blended with cornstarch works just as well? If you are concerned about your birds’ safety without a styptic treatment, keep in mind that it is just for broken nails, not broken blood feathers or skin wounds.
ALOE DETOXIFYING FORMULA CAN SAVE THE LIVES OF BIRDS — A veterinarian should be sought if a bird looks to be gravely unwell. Sometimes bird ailments are difficult to diagnose and may not respond to conventional treatments. If specialists give up and send a bird home to die, there is an Aloe vera cure that has saved the lives of many birds that did not react to professional assistance.
Except for one Eclectus hen who fell extremely sick some years ago, my tiny flock of Eclectus parrots has been wonderfully healthy throughout my years of birdkeeping. She was treated by two great veterinarians who did all they could to bring her back to health. They eventually gave up owing to a lack of response to typical therapies such as tissue biopsies, exploratory surgery, and a variety of drugs. She had nothing to lose by attempting alternative treatments after being sent home with little prospect of recovery.
In quest of assistance, I went to health food shops. The ill hen has liver damage, according to one of the vets, therefore I picked a natural cure for this problem. It was a “Aloe Detoxifying Formula,” a concentration of Aloe vera and liver-cleansing herbs such as milk thistle, which is often given for liver disorders. At the time, the mixture was double-strength Aloe vera gel (200:1) with Aloe vera pulp, milk thistle, burdock, dandelion, echinacea, green tea, red clover, and blue cohosh. Because all of the components were non-toxic and there was no technique for treating birds with it, I just fed the sick hen as much of the solution as I could. I mixed it into her water, and she drank more than she had in weeks. I mixed it with her bird bread and other dry meals, and she ate more than she had since the start of her sickness.
The hen’s overall temperament and activity level altered rapidly and substantially, which beyond my expectations. She began to perch again and take in her surroundings. She healed so swiftly that when one of her veterinarians rechecked her blood two weeks later, he claimed he would not have believed the findings if he hadn’t taken the blood personally. Her liver results were back to normal! Since then, this lovely hen has given birth to numerous healthy babies and has never been unwell. Although the reason of her sickness was never determined, I am certain that the Aloe Detoxifying solution was essential in her recovery.
I did not keep track of the specifics, such as the quantity of detox formula she was given, since I did not anticipate the therapy to be effective. Several veterinarians and breeders have since utilized this solution to rescue freshly born chicks that had failed to flourish. The product I used was Naturade, and it is still available, except the recipe now includes 100 mg. of Arabinogalactan, a naturally occurring polysaccharide (sugar) extracted from the Larch tree. It has been demonstrated to enhance helpful bacteria while decreasing harmful bacteria in animals’ digestive tracts. The original elements are still present in the mix. Many birdkeepers regard Aloe Detoxifying solution to be an essential element of their first aid kit, and many vets now utilize it on their avian patients.
If I were left on a desert island with my birds and could only have one first aid item, the decision would be simple. For birdkeepers, aloe vera is the next best thing to a magical elixir.
More information about Aloe vera:
On numerous “dangerous plant lists” on the Internet and elsewhere, Aloe vera may be mentioned among the poisonous plants. The authors of such lists make an effort to be complete and accurate by adding any plant having any hazardous qualities, no matter how weak.
In the instance of Aloe vera, the plant’s toxic component is not what most of us would consider “poisonous.” It is an irritant that may cause skin rashes and stomach distress. The issue is the yellow sap immediately under the epidermis of the Aloe vera stem. This yellow-green sap, known as “Aloe bitters,” is used as a purgative. For all other reasons, it should be avoided. It can barely be regarded a genuine poison since it is sold as a treatment.
If you’re using fresh Aloe vera, peel away the stiff outer skin and use a paper towel, running water, or both to remove any residual yellow-green sap. To avoid the issue of Aloin or Aloe “bitters,” many people choose to use prepared Aloe, which is readily accessible in health food shops, pharmacies, department stores, and other locations. The following are typical remarks from dangerous plant lists:
“Ingestion of the latex immediately under the epidermis of the Aloe stalk might result in a cathartic (purging) response by irritating the large intestine.”
“Aloe is a popular house plant because of its reputation for healing burns, wounds, and other skin ailments, although contact dermatitis may arise in sensitive persons.”
“If using fresh Aloe, remove the skin and inner layer of yellow liquid, leaving just the gel. In instances of contact dermatitis, the principal irritant is yellow juice, which is more prevalent in older plants.” “
You may avoid the “mildly poisonous” effects of Aloe by buying prepared gel or juice. Because bitters are offered as a cure or purgative, I don’t believe they are a real poison. Many veterinarians, including Avian vets, recommend Aloe vera for their feathered patients, but because parrots are extremely sensitive to toxins (primarily inhalants rather than ingested toxins), it is understandable that anyone unfamiliar with Aloe vera’s “low degree” of toxicity, and perhaps unaware of how widely it is currently used in the treatment of parrots, would be hesitant to recommend it.
I’ve been using both fresh and prepared Aloe products with my birds for well over 10 years and have never had a single Avian incidence of even an upset stomach, even feeding them fresh slices of Aloe leaves without peeling away the skin. If parrots could, they would “peel water,” and they immediately peel away the troublesome yellow sap just under the skin before consuming it. I, nor any of my parrots, have ever had the contact dermatitis mentioned in the cautions.
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