When he sees The Almighty Evil Towel, he panics and flaps his wings in his cage to get away. The problem is that he bashes his wings against the cage wall until he bleeds. And we haven't even touched him yet.
On Thursday, when we were at Night Owl, Dr. McDonald had an assistant turn the lights out in the examination room to catch him. The theory is, they can't see in the dark so they won't move... as much(?) We did the same at home, but discovered that he can still move pretty fast and pretty far in the dark.
We didn't give him the antibiotics or do the wings last night. We just let him fly around for a while and he started landing on our arms and shoulders. He's gotten more comfortable with us and will cautiously come to us when we call him. We got him back into his cage and that was it for the night. This morning, he was still singing and talking to us. He's even sort of started walking up onto our arms on command.
We've decided that he'll have to be boarded at Night Owl for about a week to receive treatment. We'll be hurting him more than treating him at home. Sid will be a lot more than the original estimated $500. It's looking more like $750-$1000 now with the boarding costs and the possibility of Giardia and anything else wrong with him.
I had second thoughts about keeping him last night. I'm not an animal person to begin with and this is the first time I've had a pet that's been this much hassle for me. For me, I am DEFINITIVELY NOT willing to "do whatever it takes". There IS a point where I will draw the line and say, "put him down" because I'm not willing to spend any more money on it. And I suspect that amount is smaller than what most people have in mind.
These are pets. I am their owner. I am their caretaker. But they are not my "children". I am NOT their "mother". I know that that's just the language among pet owners. I'm not mad at being called that because I can't rightly bring myself to be offended at something where I know no offense was intended.
In any case, I had thought Husband Guy and I had drawn that line at just the checkup and quarantining. Then it turned into having to get drugs and doing stuff. And now it's turned into boarding him at Night Owl. The situation is escalating. It feels like things are spiraling out of control and the line that we laid down keeps shifting.
Husband Guy really wants to keep Sid. I asked him... no, I demanded that he set a limit. Either a situational limit (if we do A, B and C, but Sid still needs more done, we ask L to take him back) or a financial limit (after spending $X, we ask L to take Sid back) or a combination of both.
You have to realize though, that the longer we try to help Sid, the more L's responsibility wanes and Sid becomes more and more "ours". And the longer we have Sid, the worse it's going to be to have to move him back to L's place. His health isn't going to do well moving around like that.
Husband is very tempted to go full steam ahead and do whatever it takes to get Sid to a point where he can be put in the same room as Skippy. That was his situational limit. That's way too vague to me and I asked him to list more concrete events. If we don't, it could be one thing after another and he may never be able to be a companion for Skippy. And he may have recurring problems that could cost us year after year of boarding him, paying out of pocket for medication and surprise expenses.
Husband says, "They're still costing less than children." Don't you DARE compare them to human children, I thundered.
Negotiations are still in progress.
[Update — 1700h]
Now that we're back from Night Owl and not so rushed, I should say that we're not fighting over this, per se. Husband Guy agrees with me in principle that we absolutely do not want this to get crazy; our wallets and sanity come first, ALWAYS. And I agree that Sid is a good bird for us; we should give our best effort to do what we can for his health. We're both swinging back and forth between wanting to keep Sid and wanting to give him back.
It's all constructive discussions.