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Animal Breeding reviews in Annandale

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    We really enjoyed getting to know our two new baby parrots starting in February. We came to the aviary many times to spend time with them while they were still being weaned. That established a connection with them that made their transition to our home less traumatic for them, and gave us a good idea on the characters of the two very different parrots. During our visits we spent a lot of time talking with the owners, Tammy and David, getting advice from them, and creating a comfortable relationship.
    Jackie and Perrie were a delightful addition for our family, which includes our two young kids aged 6 and 8. Jackie especially exhibited strong caique character acting more like a child or puppy - wanting to always be with us no matter what room we were in. He developed a very strong and healthy body, by climbing and playing much more vigorously than Perrie. Perrie also was doing very well in our home, and loved mostly to sit on our shoulders and chirp. The two birds were inseparable companions.
    On Friday June 29th, I drove out to the aviary, to bring them for boarding through the following week. The boarding cages were half the size of our home cage, but with only a few toys and one bed, the space seemed OK. Gave them kisses goodbye, and left to go home to pack for our week trip. I also dropped our dog off for boarding with our usual dog experts in Arlington.
    That night a strong storm hit the DC area, knocking out power in the region. We left early that morning to drive up to a cabin in the Adirondack mountains in New York. Thankfully once we were about 90 miles north of D.C., the power outages were left behind.
    On Saturday, I got an email from our dog boarders that they had lost power, and started to work with them to find an alternate location. No word came from the aviary, and being out in Chantilly (far from DC), we hoped for the best as we had not heard from them.
    Sunday night my cell phone rang, and I saw it was the aviary. Expecting to hear about a power outage I was shocked when I heard David say and quot;We have an issue with Jackie...he got out....and quot; and then the call dropped. Being in the mountains, the signal was very poor. He called again and said again and quot;he got out...and quot; and then and quot;Jackie is deadand quot; and then the call dropped again. At this point our family was all very upset. Thankfully I was able to get a call to him on another more reliable phone.
    The story we were told is that on Saturday many owners from around the area who lost power, brought their birds to the aviary for boarding - to get them out of the heat. So the aviary was very crowded. The birds were all last checked at 12:45 am, and no issues were found. The next morning, Sunday, when Tammy came in at 10:00 am and was doing the rounds, they found Jackie face-down in the corner of the cage. When she pulled him out, she found him dead. No trauma to his body. No signs of any of the possible avian illnesses. His neck was not caught in the bars. Unknown cause of death.
    Of course we were very upset with this news. I called him back the next day to go over the story again, making sure to ask about all the different checks they could do to see if any illness hit him. No signs of anything wrong. One thing David suggested was that apparently in the middle of that night, two birds in another cage nearby got into a bad fight - evidence which was pulled feathers. The suggestion was that Jackie became startled and ran head-first into the bars, breaking his neck.
    Our week long vacation was greatly changed from that first Sunday call. It is amazing how quickly parrots become part of the family. And with such an unknown explanation for his death, it was very upsetting. We came home early, Friday July 6th, as we were concerned over Perrie. Once we had a reunion with him, I had a private moment with Tammy and David to talk with them more about Jackie.
    and quot;We were very surprised as well. He seemed very healthy and happy, not stressed over the other birdsand quot;. I explained that we were concerned over Perrie as he lost his companion and that we wanted to look into another bird. I hesitated at this point because I had expected them to offer us something, hopefully a new bird. But since no offer was made I said and quot;would you be willing to give us a discount on another bird?and quot;. and quot;No, we don't do thatand quot; was Tammy's reply.
    They charged me for 8 days of boarding (which we think included Jackie's first day as well), and a bird bed ($23-ish) for a total of $167.
    Once getting Perrie home, we noticed that he was lifting his left leg up more than normal when on a perch. On inspection, we saw that the middle toe on his left foot was injured and red. I took him to the vet on Monday, and he confirmed Perrie has an infection. He is now on antibiotics and pain medicine. Cost: $113
    Because of the strange circumstance of the death of a healthy, happy bird and the injury to our other bird, we feel very strongly that this aviary has acted very unprofessional in not even offering any type of compensation for our loss. We have spent close to $2500 in their aviary - a good excited customer. What a bad business decision to not take any responsibility at all, nor even offer any type of discount for a new bird. They are very much a bird mill - producing new babies to sell with focus only on the money rather than the quality and making good long term business relationships.
    We do not believe that he died from a broken neck inside the cage. With David having said and quot;he got outand quot; twice during the interrupted cell calls, and knowing that if any of the cage doors were not fully secured shut - a caique is mischevious enough to find it and escape the cage --- we are sure that Jackie got out of the cage completely and either ate something on the aviary floor, bit into a live wire, or even was injured by a person walking by. With the small cage, he could not have gotten up enough force to injure himself fatally As one avarian expert told us this week, he has seen many birds injury themselves in cages, but only to the result of pulled feathers or bruises - nothing close to being fatal.
    We do not recommend them for any business.
    - Sara W.
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