*sigh* It's okay. I know he loves us otherwise. We leave his cage door open for a bit almost every day so that he gets a chance to come out, fly around and get some exercise. His wings are clipped so he can't go very far, but he seems to want to stay in the general vicinity of where we are anyway.
He was out and about Monday afternoon, so I decided it might be a good idea to get him into the little travel cage and give him a shower. He was rather dusty. He'll pull out blood feathers that aren't supposed to come out. From the way he squawks when he plucks, you know it hurts him. But he still does it. =P So, the shower couldn't do any harm.
Sid was SUCH a good boy about it. He was a bit apprehensive at first, but then after a while, he just stayed still on the side of the cage, closed his eyes and let us spritz him down with the warm water. It worked out so well, in fact, that I can't believe we didn't think of putting Skippy in the travel cage for showers as well. =}
Then we towelled off the cage and pointed a hairdryer on warm/low at him from a foot and a half away.
He did spend quite a bit of time grooming after his shower yesterday. But TODAY, I noticed that there were no feathers at the bottom of his cage and I didn't hear him squacking like he does when he plucks himself. I think he feels clean, so he doesn't feel the need to groom himself.
If this is all it takes to get him to stop overgrooming, I'd be happy to mist him every 3-4 days.
[Update - August 04, 2004 - 0928h]
*exasperated sigh* That's it. He needs to be fitted with a collar. I found two more blood feathers at the bottom of his cage this morning. Husband Guy is going to call Dr. MacDonald today about the results of his followup blood tests. He'll make an appointment while he's at it. I told him to also ask if it would be a bad idea to put their cages closer together. If they can see each other, will Skippy learn to pick herself from watching him do it?
While I'm on the subject, I've left the cockatiels community. I left quite a while ago, actually. There are one or two level-headed people who give as sound advice as internet strangers can, but the majority of the members are immature, have a really irritating sense of entitlement and don't have an ounce of common sense whatsoever — "OMGWTFBBQTCP/IP!!!!! My birdie going to die!! Wut shoudl I do!!ONEONE!!" And then they post another entry that says, "ISN'T N E 1 GOING TO HELP ME WITH THIS????!!!!!!! YOU GUYS SUXORS!!! PRETEND I'M A CUTE WIDDLE GIRL AND HLEP MEEEE!! oneoneone" Take your bird to the vet then, moron.
I don't fit in there. There isn't anything I can get in that community that I can't get from Dr. MacDonald or Google for, in a pinch.