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Staphylococcus in Pet Birds
Staphylococcus is an infectious non-contagious disease caused by
a bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.
All avian species appear to be susceptible to staphylococcosis,
but is more common wherever poultry are reared.
Most infections occur because of a wound. Infection can also
occur in the hatchery as a result of contamination of an
open navel. Birds that are immunosuppressed are also subject
to staphylococcal infections.
The disease is characterized by septicemia, bumble foot
and/or arthritis. Infection most often manifests itself
as a synovitis, with lameness being the most common clinical
presentation. The bones and associated joints most frequently
affected are the proximal tibiotarsus and proximal femur; the
proximal tarsometatarsus, distal femur, and tibiotarsus are also
involved when infection is extensive. Other common lesions
include navel and yolk sac infections. Lesions that have been
reported include gangrenous dermatitis, green liver in turkeys,
and liver spots and granulomas.
Treatment and Prevention
Staphylococcosis can be successfully treated with antibiotics,
but a sensitivity test should be performed because antibiotic
resistance is common.
Reduce all potential sources of injury to the bird.
Sanitation is important to reduce the numbers of bacteria.