Why is My Budgie Tail Bobbing? {What Does It Mean}

Did you notice your budgie bobbing its tail up and down? Are you afraid it is a way the budgie passes the message that it is in pain or suffering? Ease yourself of the worries as this article is about tail bobbing and what you need to do about it.

So Why is My Budgie Tail Bobbing?

A Budgie typically bobs their tail when they are out of breath, and the bird’s muscles are contracting and working on getting them more breath for breathing.

If this happens don’t worry as this is a normal process for them.

Is My Budgie Tail Bobbing Normal?

It is a normal thing for birds, with budgies inclusive, to bob their tails during some activities. When birds breathe, chirp, or perform other activities, their tail moves up and down in a bobbing manner. The more effort they put into these activities, the more energy in their tail bob.

Although the tail’s small movement is most times not considered a tail bob, it is a mini version of tail bobbing. The scary part of tail bobbing starts when the budgie is having a hard time breathing. This bobbing is always intense as the bird muscles do extra work trying to get enough breath for the bird.

It is normal for budgies to the former but slight tail bobbing, but abnormal and alarming to perform the latter. When you notice the intense tail bobbing associated with breathing difficulty, you should provide the needed care and medication to ease it of its worries. If you cannot handle the situation, you should visit a vet and save your budgie a lot of trouble.

Why is My Budgie Tail Bobbing Up and Down

There are several reasons your budgie is bobbing the tail up and down. It can be as a result of the activities it carries out, like chirping and breathing. This type of tail bobbing occurs slightly and is sometimes not considered as tail bobbing even when the tail movement is the same.


Another reason your budgie is bobbing its tail is as a sign of illness. When your budgie is sick, you will notice the intense up and down movement of the tail. The intensity of the tail bobbing depends on how severe the sickness is.

One of the sickness budgies encounters that cause them to bob their tail is respiratory problems. Birds do not have diaphragms that separate their chest cavity from their lower abdomen. This structure allows the effect of actions in the chest cavity to tell on the tail and even have muscles that control their lungs from the tail.

The muscles in the tail control the lungs’ movement, consequently causing the movement of their tail. When they have a problem catching their breath, the tail muscles do a lot more work in helping the budgie get enough breath. As the muscles work hard in breathing, the tail also moves in bobbing up and down movement.

The more work the muscles perform in the laboured breathing, the more their tail bobs. When you notice this bobbing in your budgie, you should take care of it and treat it with a respiratory problem. You can also visit a vet to provide your budgie with more intensive care.

Why is My Budgie Tail Bobbing While Sleeping

Tail bobbing is regardless of whether the budgie is sleeping or awake; it only depends on the activities that involve the movement of the muscles in the tail. The budgie can be awake and have its tail settled because its activities do not require the muscles’ movement in its tail. And it can be asleep and have its tail bobbing as there is the movement of the muscles in the tail.


If your budgie has difficulty breathing or respiratory problems, it will bob its tail even when sleeping. Sleeping does not eradicate the problem, neither does it reduce it; it only allows a better manifestation of the problem. When your budgie is sleeping, it has to breathe to stay alive, so the muscles in the tail keep working to ensure breathing.

In the case of labored breathing, they work harder to provide enough breath for your budgie. As this activity goes on, you will notice the tail bobbing up and down while it sleeps. You have to find a solution to the respiratory problem of your budgie. You can either administer treatment yourself or take the budgie to a vet for professional intervention.

Why is My Budgie Tail bobbing and Panting

Tail bobbing and panting both have one or two things to do with respiration. Panting occurs when your budgie is trying to catch its breath, and tail bobbing occurs when a respiratory problem requires the budgie to catch its breath. Both situations deal with having difficulty breathing.

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When you notice your budgie panting and bobbing its tail, it shows that it is having difficulty breathing, or even worse, respiratory problems. This sign might not manifest until the latter and critical stage of the illness. You have to treat your budgie and offer it medical assistance as soon as you start seeing the signs.

Why is My Budgie Tail Bobbing But Not Sick

Sometimes, tail bobbing does not indicate your budgie is sick; it can only be due to daily activities. When a budgie chirps, its tail bobs in the up and down movement, making bobbing, not every time a sign of sickness. When your bird breathes normally, its tail also bobs, but you might not notice it as the bobbing will be quite insignificant.

Can You Treat Budgie Tail Bobbing

Yes, you can treat your budgie with tail bobbing. To cure the bobbing, you must first treat the underlying cause, which is the respiratory infection. You can use antibiotics to treat the respiratory infection, and you will be, in turn, treating the tail bobbing.


Budgies can bob their tail for various reasons, but you have to be sure it is not a result of infection. If it is sick or ill, you have to treat the disease as soon as possible.

Budgies do many things consciously and subconsciously to show or pass a message about their current situation. One of these behaviors is tail bobbing, where they do this when excited and mouth breathing.


I love animals! I grew up with everything from dogs and cats to rabbits and guinea pigs. I enjoy learning about pets and to share what I learn with others.