I have a 6-8 year old goose (a gander). It's kind of an unusual situation because I've kept him as a house-pet ever since I've had him (for about 6-7 years) and am very much in love with him. He is always there for me, "talks" to me, grooms me and quite a few times he's even slept me. So yes, I guess I'm an odd-ball but to each their own I guess.
Anyway, the main reason I am posting this is because I have a few questions and would be very appreciative of any input I can get.
1) Since I've had this goose, he has gone through many moults. I really haven't kept tabs on exactly when his moults begin, how long they last or where he first begins to lose feathers, etc but when he's done moulting, he always looks like a brand new bird. This time however, he seems to have gone through a never-ending moult. At first the flight feathers began falling out and then new feathers sprouted and grew. Then I'd see smaller feathers and puffs of down all over the place like a feathery snow-storm. Then, I noticed he was always grooming (but not plucking) his belly feathers and seemed to be particulary obcessed with doing this. About 3 months later, he is still doing this and is still losing feathers. I should add that he is not plucking or going bald (the feathers are moulting naturally)...it's just that for whatever reason, this time it seems to be taking forever. Has anyone else ever experienced this?. Is it normal?. If not, what could be going on here and is there anything I can do?.
2) I used a foam sealant to plug several holes in the house last year. I would always hear crunching sounds when I'd leave him alone and go into another room. One day I found out what those crunching noises were. My goose was eating the foam sealant!. I could see him chewing and when I felt his throat, he had a lump in it. I could also see bits of it falling out of his beak. I have since removed all of the foam sealant but I have a feeling that he has been eating it for awhile now. He is eating, drinking and pooping normally and is full of energy but should I be worried?.
3) Being an indoor bird, he gets some sun-light but not as much as an outdoor bird. I feed him a combination of lettuce, apple, banana, cucumber, bread and corn on the cob once every day in the afternoon and then lamb and goat pellets with water in the evening. I give him as much water as he wants and give him saltine crackers as treats. I also let him bathe in the tub. I gave him vitamin/mineral fortified grit at one time but have to admit that I have been lax about this lately. Is there anything I am missing in his diet?. Because he doesn't get all the sunshine an outdoor bird would should I give him a vitamine D supplement?. He weighs the same as he did when I first got him but his eye look somewhat "sunken in" and he looks skinny...could the diet, not as much sunshine, etc have anything to do with this and what can I do (or should I be doing?).
I just want to say in advance that I can see where someone might think I'm a bit of an odd-ball. There are other people out there who have house geese, other unusual house pets and even a number of people who keep horses in their house so while I'm in the proverbial "minority", I'm actually not the only one and am hoping for a productive conversation here and very much welcome it :-). Obviously I love and care about my bird or I wouldn't be here taking the time to ask for advice. Having said that, I welcome any constructive, helpful, advice and am very grateful for it!.
Thanks so much, GooseLover