A bird’s outer beak is made of keratin and grows continuously much like our fingernails. Birds generally wear down their beak naturally and do not usually require regular beak trimming. However, there are some cases where birds develop an abnormal beak, or their beak becomes overgrown.

If not corrected, an overgrown beak can prevent birds from performing daily tasks such as climbing, preening, and eating, leading to malnutrition and other health problems.

Overgrown Break Budgie

What Causes an Overgrown Beak?

An overgrown beak can result from a developmental problem, nutritional deficiency, illness, or it can also be due to trauma or injury.

In these cases, the two different parts of the beak (the upper and lower) may start to miss each other, which becomes a problem as the area that is not connecting with the opposite beak then continues to grow. If this occurs, then beak correction is generally recommended.

How Do You Trim A Bird’s Beak?

An experienced avian vet should always perform beak corrections and trims. In most cases, this procedure can be performed with your bird awake; however, in more serious cases (or if your bird is very nervous or stressed) a short anaesthesia is sometimes needed.

At The Unusual Pet Vets, we perform beak corrections using a specialised burr that gently and precisely mimics the natural erosion of the beak. This technique allows us to file the beak down to its optimal shape where the top and bottom beaks align again.

Break Trimming
Overgrown break

Does It Hurt to Trim A Bird’s Beak?

Beak corrections should not hurt. An overgrown beak is like an overgrown fingernail, and the process of trimming the beak is like filing the whites of a fingernail. There is no nerve or sense of pain in the overgrown area. Therefore, if performed correctly, and only the appropriate amount is trimmed, your bird won’t feel any pain at all.

How Often Do Beak Trims Need To be Performed?

If your bird’s beak is abnormal or overgrown, regular beak corrections may be required every 1-12 months.

If you have noticed that your birds top or bottom beak looks overgrown or appears abnormal in any way, please get in touch with us. You can make an appointment online or phone your local Unusual Pet Vets team directly.

Wavy bg testimonials


Client – Sunshine Coast

There is a great positive vibe felt when you walk in the door! The staff are friendly, caring, and welcoming. Highly recommended. Thank you, from Pepper Pig.

Brad Symons

Client – Ferntree Gully

Very professional vets there! They have the vaccination available when every other vet clinic I called didn’t. They know rabbits so well that I was feeling very comfortable and confident to let them take care of my rabbit even though its further from home!

Danielle Lam

Client – Ferntree Gully

Love the welcoming receptionist and the vet. They treated my fur babies with care and also follow-up the subsequent day, just to make sure my bunnies are recovering well.

Timmy Toppy

Client – Sunshine Coast

The whole team at UPV Sunshine Coast are friendly, accommodating, professional, passionate, and caring! I have regular contact with the team as one of my parrots requires ongoing medication and they are always prompt with sorting out prescriptions and meds. Highly recommend. 

Lee Stone

Client – Sunshine Coast

Thank you to the team at UPV for taking care of Oscar the Eckie! We had a wonderful first appointment and Dr Pat took good care of my little guy, even though he can be nervous and difficult. I really appreciate you guys for going the extra mile to keep Oscar safe and to give him a positive experience.

Kiah Nash

Client – Sunshine Coast

Dr Alex at Buderim clinic was extremely kind and caring. His knowledge about bearded dragons is incredible. He was successful in helping Kiko our bearded dragon get back to optimal health. I was also impressed that he kept me informed twice a day. Many thanks. 

Penny Thompson

Client – Balcatta

Great staff and wonderful doctors, so helpful and caring about our pets. Really appreciated the respect and care given to our little friends.

Adam Cliff

Client – Balcatta

Thank you to Dr Yang for her attempt to help and care my rabbit, Lola. Even though it wasn’t the result we hoped and prayed for Dr Yang was very caring and professional with Lola even letting my mother and I having our last moments with her. We couldn’t be more grateful for that. Even sending us a condolence card in the mail. Dr Yang and team are highly recommended.

Anthony Koomen

Client – Balcatta

Absolutely amazing staff! They are all so caring, supportive, and professional. I had to provide palliative care for two of my older rabbits and the information & support I received from the staff was incredible. 10/10 would recommend! Plus, my rabbits give them the big tick of approval, so really that’s the main thing.

Sarah Manfredi

Client – Balcatta

I cannot speak highly enough of the care that my bird received at The Unusual Pet Vets in Balcatta. Dr Green was in constant contact with me leading up to Chirpy’s surgery and even gave me a call just prior to him going under. I can highly recommend them for any unusual pet you may have.

Sheree Bennison