Owning a Parrot
Parrots are most intelligent birds, on the earth, and for many people, are wonderful pets. Having patience, parrots can be taught words to speak, and show affection, bonding to their owner. Parrots will often, sit on the shoulder of their owner or perched near their owner’s side. Approximate, 330 species parrots worldwide. Parrot commonly live in tropical and semi-tropical regions. Macaws, cockatoos, cockatiels, and budgies are referred to as winged rainbows. Maintaining a parrots good healthy, requires a budget for range of foods, roomy cage, plenty of toys, and treats, occupy the time, especially left alone. Also, allocate budget, for veterinarian appointments. Equally important, a parrot needs attention of an owner, and helpful dialogue, learning new words. People that are sensitive to a parrot’s ‘screeching,’ hard to accept parrot, in their home. Consider, who will take care of the parrot, when you are away on vacation or during any emergencies. Contacting veterinarian facilities, have resources caring, for parrots. Large parrots require at least one hour a day of personal time or attention with owner. Many times, parrots will out live their owner’s life. Parrots like cockatoos, and macaws can live to eighty years old. Cockatiels and budgies live for ten – fifteen years or 15 – 25 years, having companion bird. Parrot owners, should make previsions in their ‘Will,’ who will take possession, of their bird, at the time of death. Good idea, ask relatives and friends, like to become, future owner of the parrot. If no one wants to accept, that responsibility, secondary choice, contact human society or bird sanctuaries, advising or acceptance of the bird, when owner is deceased.
Each species of parrot, have their own personality, may require more patience, and care. Conures are less noisy (also Pionuses), than other species. These birds need plenty of attention and understanding. Conures live about 30 – 40 years. Cockatoos are very attached to their owners, and possessive. Often, displaying hostility towards any strangers or separation of anxiety (parrots may pluck their feathers off). Macaws tend to scream, bite, and chew, normal behavior for their species. Parrot lovebirds (nine species of lovebirds) mimic sound (human words), most cuddliest, playful birds, and able to be hand-fed. Occasionally, parrots need to be washed. Parrots can be washed, under a shower spray or a spray bottle (Sensation being in a rain forest) and dried with a towel. When nails become to long, will need to be clipped or by a veterinarian.
Parrots diet consist of a combination seeds, leaves, insects, and carrion. These birds enjoy eating fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Sometimes serving, well cooked lit bits of chicken, steak, French fries, or potato chips. Don’t get parrots use to these treats. Never leave cooked food, in the cage, more than an hour, preventing bacteria. Parrots require fresh water everyday. Beside the basic foods, parrots enjoy eating cooked beans. There are exceptions: raw lentils, mung, adzuki, and garbonzo beans. Including in the diet, are pellets. Many pellet types on the market, including: Harrison’s (Fine and Coarse), Roudybush, and Hagen. Pellets are either uncolored or naturally colored, and artificial preservatives. Like humans, birds prefer a variety of foods. Healthy foods provide, more nutrition and better health. Convincing a bird, eat health foods, may take up to a month, of conversion time. A gradual changing, over to health foods, prevents parrots starving themselves. Parrots given an all seed diet, develop long-term chronic illnesses, and more susceptible to diseases, than parrots, diet of vegetables and pellets. Also, seed diet causes a parrot, having poor and greasy feathers. Never serve an avocado or chocolate to parrots, because of the toxicity, will cause the bird to get sick or die. Any food or drink contains, theobromine avoid giving to parrots. The ingredient is found in chocolate, cocoa, coffee, and some teas, which cause excitability, heart disease or death. Definitely, avoid beer, wine, or alcohol, since parrot’s liver cannot handle the substance.
Parrots are expensive. Many costs should be considered. A medium – large size parrot costs between $600 – 1,500. Parrots living in stressful environments show signs of missing feathers (or indicating other problems). Parrots tending to bite are less likely to be adopted. Older parrots may have bad habits or emotional problems. Listed on Avianweb.com, recommended parrot breeders, in the United States. Preferably, purchasing a parrot from a reputable parrot breeder. Unfortunately, many pet stores, sell parrots that are unhealthy, haven’t been quarantined from diseases or providing bad advise, caring for parrots.
A parrot needs sufficient space to play with toys, eat, drink, climb, swing (playing with toys), and move around easily. Average cost for a cage $400 – $3,500, depending on the size of the bird. Cage door latches should be drilled, and not welded. Cages should be designed, for easy access to clean. Bars on the cages, should be spaced not far apart, preventing the bird from escaping. Bottom of the cage, should be lined with paper (newspaper or paper towels), and changed daily. Easy access, provide and removing paper. Not recommended, purchasing Jungle Nest or Aviary Connections Cages, because previously reported manufacturing defects.
Play-stand for parrots to perch, ranging in size, from a half inch to an inch and a half in diameter. Material construction made of wood, rope, concrete, and plastic. Including, ladders, ropes, and swings. Provide hours of fun, entertainment, and exercise. Considering, how many hours the bird is left alone. Parrots enjoy playing with toys (Average cost $100 – $500), which can be chewed, and shred to keep busy. Toys need to be replaced, when rotated. Toys contains Zinc, absolutely should be avoided. Zinc is deadly for birds. Parrot veterinarian bills will cost, an average $100 – $300 a year (Assuming regular examinations). Many pet stores, and online Parrot suppliers, offer variety of toys, foods, and cages.
Parrots may pluck or chew their feathers. This happens, for many reasons: including: Reaching maturity (hormone imbalance, similar of maturing teenagers), abuse or neglect, boredom or lack of stimulus, dietary deficiency or imbalance, emotionally upset (Relocation to a new home or moving cage to a new location), Overgrowing by mate (Placing two birds in the same cage, may cause one of the birds over grooming, other mate), Habit or medical problem. Once, cause is determined, a remedy is often available. Immediate action can be taken, by placing a ”collar,” around the bird’s neck, preventing any further plucking. However, collar will make climbing in a cage and holding food difficult. Alternative solution (suggested by Judy Leach’s Parrots – Petparrot.com website) homemade “vest”: Preventing further plucking or self-mutilation.
Avian Influenza or Bird Flu is extremely rare disease in pets or exotic birds, according to Dr. Susan Clubb, Avian Veterinarian. There has never been case of the Avian Bird Flu affecting parrots, in the United States. Most bird are kept indoors, and from any wild birds, maybe infected.