Avian and Exotic Care

Veterinarian performing a procedure on a bird


At Pekin Veterinary Clinic, we take pride in our ability to provide excellent care to many types of animals, including exotics. While we mostly handle cats and dogs, our doctors and technicians are also well practiced with birds, reptiles, rabbits and pocket pets.


Caring for a bird can be a very rewarding experience. If, however, it is not possible to keep nails and beaks trimmed to a healthy length, more frequent veterinary visits will be needed. For routine care, we offer:

  • Comprehensive physical exams
  • Beak, wing and nail trims

Unfortunately, like in cats and dogs, birds can fall ill. Unlike cats and dogs, illness in birds can be difficult to see. Some common, yet subtle signs of illness can include:

  • Increased sleeping
  • Fluffed feathers
  • Sitting at the bottom of the cage
  • Changes in droppings
  • Increased respiratory effort


Over the years, our Pekin Veterinary team has treated many kinds of reptiles: ball pythons, leopard geckos, bearded dragons, boa constrictors and anoles to name a few. Just as in birds, illness in reptiles can be hard to spot. If you suspect something is wrong, consider:

  • Overall appearance
    • Changes in color
  • Feeding
    • Eating less or more
    • Eating different foods
  • Droppings
    • Thicker or thinner
    • Smaller, dry, hard
  • Behavior
    • Lethargy
    • Hiding more
    • Digging, scratching, etc
    • Unusually tame or aggressive
  • Physical injury


Rabbits have quickly become the most popular exotic pet. With this increase has come increased knowledge on husbandry and medicine. Our veterinarians are kept up to date on these new findings to provide the best care for your pet. Rabbits differ in many ways from cats and dogs, with a hind gut fermentation system, smaller thoracic cavity, higher metabolic rate and continually growing teeth. Keeping these in mind, we can diagnose and treat some of the most common ailments, such as:

  • Dental disease
  • Ear infections
  • Constipation
  • Urinary irritation
  • Upper respiratory infections
Pocket pet being examined with a stethoscope

Pocket Pets

An umbrella term, "pocket pets" includes all small, cages animals like gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, rats and sugar gliders. While all of these animals are different and specific anatomies and disease processes will need to be taken into account, what to look for in illness is surprisingly similar. For sickness in these small critters, some of the most common involve:

  • Respiratory system
    • Sneezing
    • Nasal and ocular discharge
  • Gastrointestinal
    • Diarrhea
  • Musculoskeletal
    • Injury
  • Oral
    • Dental disease
    • Impaction

If you're worried your bird or reptile may be sick, please schedule an appointment will us. After entering the clinic, a reception member will greet you, after which you'll be placed into an appointment room. There, a technician will get a history to allow our veterinarians to better understand the problem. The doctor will then perform a complete physical and ask you a few more questions. If needed, a variety of diagnostics and procedures may be needed, including:

  • Complete blood count
  • Chemistry panel
  • Urinalysis
  • Fecal staining
  • Radiology
  • Ultrasound

We also regularly perform surgeries on exotics, from routine procedures such as spay and neuter, to more complicated surgeries for mass removals, obstructed bowels and more.

  • They got my dog in right away when I called. Everyone is courteous and seem to genuinely love animals. Took good care of my dog and kept me informed.

    —Bruce Green

  • Doctors and staff are always kind and extremely efficient. Our pet loves going there which says a lot for their care.

    —Lori Bennett

  • Very professional, wonderful treatment!! I would recommend this facility to anyone who loves their pets

    —Lora King

  • Everytime I come here for any treatment they ALWAYS treat us like family. They show a deep concern for the pet and the owner. I tell everybody I know to bring their pets here!!! Thanks!!

    —Dawn Wade

  • "Best place I've ever been to! Everyone was extremely nice and helpful, I couldn't have asked for better!"

    —Tiffany Larson

  • "I'm always very happy with my interactions with the staff and doctors at Pekin Veterinay Clinic. I feel as though my concerns are addressed, and that the staff really cares about me and about my furbabies."

    —Sylvia Shults

  • "You can tell the Vet loves the animals. She got on the floor and played with the puppy and put her at ease. I thought that was very sweet!!"

    —Sheri Jones

  • "Great service. My dog was in need of care due to her condition and I was able to take her over right away and they worker her in. This is the kind of care and reaction I need for my dogs, and I received it."

    —Jacque Hess

  • "I have referred them to all my friends and family. They are great. There willing to work with you and are also fantastic with my dogs."

    —Diane Canizzo

  • "Wonderful as always! The people are always so nice and friendly. I feel our pet gets quality health care here."

    —Maribeth Kilbride

  • "You’re all the kind of people that make the world a better place for critters of all kinds."

    —Pekin family members Jody, Ed, Alyssia, Jake, Sweet Pea, Pippy, Simba, Cuddles, and Kera.