Monday, November 14, 2011

RIP, Brian

Little Brian died tonight.  I am just devastated. When we took him in last December, we thought we'd have a couple of months with him until his tumor took his life.  We ended up having nearly 11 months with Brian.  It wasn't enough, and it wasn't his tumor that took his life.

I came home from work a bit early today as I wanted to see the parrots.  I'd let the larger parrots out of their cages, but kept Brian inside his for safety.  I was on the far side of the room, away from his cage, when Rocky walked in to the kitchen.  He started to climb up Brian's cage.  I made my way, with a stick, to remove Rocky from Brian's cage.  I still don't know how it happened so quickly, but a split second before I arrived, Rocky bit Brian's beak off, through his cage bars.

I rushed Brian to the vet, and was told that there was nothing that could be done.  With larger parrots, they can learn to eat and survive without their upper beak, but that's not the case for budgies.  My choices were to let him slowly starve to death, or euthanize.  I chose the latter.  I still can't believe this happened.

I am killing myself with what ifs -- what if I'd not come home from work early, had done yoga when I got home, not let the larger parrots out of their cages, gotten to Brian's cage one second earlier, taken Brian out and had him on my shoulder, etc.  He'd still be alive.

I did everything I could to provide him with the best life possible, and I turned out to be his worst enemy.  I miss him so much already.  It was so quiet tonight without his cheerful chatter.  I can never own another budgie again, due to the way I failed Brian.  I don't even think I deserve to own any of my parrots, but they are stuck with me.  How could this happen?

I am so sorry, Brian.  We loved you so much and you deserved better.  I will never be able to forgive myself.


Anonymous said...

Oh man, I empathize so, so much with you. This must be terrible. I wish you well.

Also, you were far from his "worst enemy". You provided him with a good home. Accidents happen, you took precautions (extensive ones) and yet it still happened.

Again, I'm sorry for you.

Harley Macaw has marked kermit conures beak - and that shook me.

RainyGrlJenny said...

I am so, so very sorry, not just for Brian's death but also for the way it happened.

Please don't beat yourself up about it too much. You have given him so much love, and took such joy in him since he came to your home.

I'll be thinking of you :(

Brittney said...

HUGs Having been a zookeeper and seeing my fair share of accidents I know you bad you are feeling. But, it was just that, an accident. HUGs

Stephanie Taylor said...

I'm so sorry this happened. You took great care of Brian and obviously loved him. He was happy during his time with you. Accidents are terrible, and I know that I still regret not being able to prevent my birds from passing. All I can do is try not to dwell on it and focus on the birds I do have.

Brian will be much missed by all of us.

WendyKnits said...

I am so sorry to hear about Brian. While I know I would be beating myself up the way you are if it happened to me, I can be objective about your situation. Please know that you gave him a wonderful life and it is NOT your fault. It was an accident and had he not been in your loving home, far worse things could have befallen him.

Thank you for sharing Brian with us. I will miss seeing his dear little face.

phonelady said...

I m so sorry for your loss on brian and yes it does happen . I lost one of my indian ringnecks to an amazon I was fostering . Yes it is devastating . I will miss your blogs about Brian . God bless you .

Suzanne said...

I am so sorry to hear about Brian. Please know that this was not your fault. Accidents happen, as painful as they can be, they happen despite all our careful planning.

All we can do is be ever vigilant and push forward. I will remember Brian as the sweet little fellow that made me want a budgie, where I had never wanted one before. He will be missed.

Elizabeth said...

I'm so sorry. As everyone else has said, accidents happen and you took so many precautions.

Becky said...

I am so sorry for your loss. It was so obvious throughout your blog how much you loved and cherished Brian. Think about the wonderful quality of life he had in that year. He went from being cage bound to having toys, playing, bathing, and freedom to roam around out of his cage. That would not have happened without your intervention. Don't punish yourself too much. Those birds are so blessed to have you guys. People do such horrible things to animals, and all you do is love and care for them. You do deserve to have them, and you do a wonderful job. Brian would agree with me.

Meg said...

Oh, I am so sorry. Try not to blame yourself. I know he had a wonderful life with you. He was a wonderful bird, and a wonderful ambassador for his species.

Pamela said...

Oh, we all know how much you loved Brian, and so did he. I'm just sorry that the joyous months he spent with you were capped by such a terrible accident. I hope you manage to forget that part......

Wazeau said...

You gave Brian a wonderful life while he was with you. Please do not beat yourself up with the accident that took him from you. You are a great parrot person. Grieve for him and then let him go and stay there for the other members of your flock and family.

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry. Remember, by bravely sharing this you have likely saved some little birdie lives by reminding everyone how easily accidents happen. Thank you so much for that, and all you do to care for and educate people about these wonderful creatures.

Anonymous said...

I am so upset to hear about Brian. Your blog and videos brought his lovely character to so many people.
What happened was an accident, it was not neglect or laziness. It was just an accident. Brian was clearly happy with you. Maybe he wouldn't have lived as long in the shelter. He was a happy, loved bird, and his time was up. You always did your best for him and I hope the pain does ease xxx

D. Richard said...

I have all ready posted , How well he has done with you .
Let me ask you this
If we went back in time and you were considering getting this cage bound sweet Parakeet expecting to only live a month or 2 at the outside . It has a Horrible tumor that will kill him . And then you asked us if you should take him and make him comfortable in his last days . And then you pointed out that he would likely be in danger and that even if he does well he might very well die of an injury inflicted by another bird if he manages to live 3 months or 4 months even with precautions . I think we would have all begged you to take him . He may have very well been happy for the first time in his life .
If he had stayed in the shelter he would have likely died thinking nobody cared for him .
Even if now you had a parakeet that was in need of a hospice . We would beg you to take him . Even if then that bird only lived one week, It would be a week filled with the LOVE that these little guys need.
You are a special person .
I would chew off an arm for my Angle and Hollywood , Ruby , Charles , Linus , Giggles, Icarus, and The Bad Twin . Still I would trust them fully with you .

You only hurt now because you cared, and you opened your heart to him . Could you have done any less?
God Bless You Mary.

Anonymous said...


The only thing I can add is things happen for a reason and the what ifs aren't good for you. Let go of the guilt you feel, your birds are well cared for and loved. What happened with Brian was a freak accident and it was not your fault.

Saemma said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Sending you healing thoughts. Rest in peace sweet sweet Brian.

Tony Wildish said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Brian! That's tragic, and I can only imagine how that must feel for you.

But you can't blame yourself. These critters are just so fast it's incredible, and you can't possibly foresee all the outcomes. Nobody could.

I'm only just catching up on my reading, or I'd have written earlier, sorry.

Anonymous said...

dolotMy heart breaks for the two of you. Brian had the best life with you. He was loved and even got out of cage time, he never even had thet before comming to you. His life was so rich with you and longer than you even expected it to be. He knew he was loved and I know he is in a wonderful place now, too. He didn't have to suffer along death of the cancer that was eating away at him. Bless you both. I will call you soon. Barb.

Anonymous said...

Mary, I am so, so sorry. I've been behind on my blog reading, so I missed this awful news.

I know how terrible you must feel. My conure suffered a terrible injury to her beak when I was in vet school. It was random happenstance that my AG didn't bite it off completely, but she suffered 2 or 3 skull fractures, and her beak is forever damaged. I felt terrible, as it happened so fast, and I felt totally negligent. Accidents happen, and sometimes the consequences aren't so bad, and sometimes they are. It sucks, but it doesn't make you a bad owner.

Brian was lucky to have you in his last 11 months. I know you will always feel guilt about this. Keep your chin up :(

-Homeless Parrot