If you’ve been around my blog for a while, you might know about Kiwi, the sassy little parakeet who loves Minecraft (and dive-bombing me in meetings) and hates the sudden volume shifts in Diablo 3.
I first brought her home in November 2011. I still remember carrying her little cardboard box from the pet store on the bus as a university student, happily shuttling what must have been a rather scared and chilly bird back to my cheap basement apartment. She was a little standoffish at first, but quickly warmed up to Disney movies and Lego Indiana Jones.
Over the years, she became my trusted little companion, happily chirping me on in my games and doing a parakeet’s best impression of a growl at enemies who got too close.
And she wasn’t shy about sharing her cheerleading skills with Shane when he moved in, either. They quickly became best buddies, coming up with their own secret chirpy greetings and dances as she discovered new loves for games like Gears of War and Destiny 2.
She even grew close to Harley, often making faces at her or giving her a little meep when she walked by. I can’t tell you how many times I walked through our living room to see the two of them head-tilting at each other as only a golden and a budgie could.
Now, after many long years of happiness, it’s time for her to rest.
Not long after we got back from our trip to MSI 2023 in London, it became pretty clear to us that there was something up with Kiwi. At first, we thought she’d tripped and stumbled so her foot was bothering her. It wouldn’t’ve been the first time for the clumsy girl, that’s for sure.
But it didn’t go away.
We ended up taking her to an avian vet, who discovered that Kiwi had an infection in her poor little feet. We could try to treat it for her, the vet said, but if it didn’t work, we’d have to look at either euthanasia or palliative care.
Obviously, we chose to try and help her, because usually by the time you catch something with a bird, it’s too late, so if the vet thought there was hope at this point, we’d take it. We quickly had to learn how to get an incredibly bitey budgie to take her medicine, made easier thanks to puncture-proof gardening gloves.
I’ll always be glad that we took that chance, because it means she got to spend her last days at home on her terms and not in pain. She lived a much longer life than many budgies do, and I’m so grateful that we got to spend that time with her.