|Email Newsletter 10/09/2011|
|It’s said in the veterinary community that the volume of knowledge with regards to parrots is doubling every five years. Yet day after day we hear the same refrain “my bird bit me”. We’re not behaviorists. If you’re looking for a bird behaviorist look at Scott Robbins seen in the first video (left) below.There’s Lara Joseph, Michelle Karras and a host of other experts qualified to help you train your bird or parrot. But you might not have the time nor the money to engage the services of a specialist in bird behavior. So we put together what we think are 6 of the better videos out there to give you bit of a jump start to train you bird.
One of the more common problems we hear is “my bird’s so noisy”. No matter how many times I yell at it to “shut up” the noise doesn’t end. Our response is “think about your actions”. Birds are flock and social animals. They love to communicate – verbally. Birds chirping in the morning – they’re probably chatting about their grocery lists. point is, the birds are always chatting. so when you tell a bird to “shut up” the birds thinking “this is great, they want to chat – squawk, squawk”. Here’s one tip that may help with a screaming bird.
Biting is another issue. Keep a couple of things in mind when it comes to parrot bites. If the bird was in the wild or even just outside – it wouldn’t bite you – it would fly away. Parrot bites can mean anything. Much like a babies cry. I’m hungry – bite – you’re too close – bite – I want to get off your shoulder – bite. Learning how to avoid bird bites is like learning a second language. It must be studied and practiced
The best thing you can do to help get along with your bird is to spend time with it, an hour or two a day – yes a large time commitment but it was our decision to take the birds out of the sky. It’s our responsibility to treat them as the intelligent caring beings they truly are.
At the core of it you’re dealing with a creature who can function at a 2 -3 year old toddler level (in a feather suit). They’re so smart. they don’t like to be caged and will do almost anything to escape given the opportunity. So when they spend all day in their bird cage while you’re at work or at school, birds get bored, maybe a little cranky?
If you open your bird cage door and stick your hand inside to pull your bird out – you may get bit. It’s their space you’re invading. Ever get cranky in the morning because you didn’t have a good night’s sleep? Most birds come from areas close to the equator. Their internal clocks crave 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. We’ve seen bird’s gain a positive attitude after their owners realized their birds really didn’t care about late night TV, they needed to sleep and moving them to a “quite room” for birdie bedtime made a huge and positive impact on the bird’s daily behavior.
Kissing your bird on it’s beak may be fun but remember it can be like juggling razor blades. A startled bird can slash through skin in a heartbeat. Speaking of kissing your bird, they get curious and like to investigate your mouth. Don’t let them taste your saliva – it’ unhealthy for you and the bird.
Bird treats are an important part of the training process. Small pieces so the birds eat them quickly. Birds respond well to positive reinforcement. Clicker training is emphasized in a few of the videos below. We don’t sell clickers but found this site if you’re interested. Clicker training for birds is used by the pros for a reason – it works.
We hope you enjoy the bird training videos we’ve selected below. More importantly we hope they help you become a better companion to your bird. If you have stories to share or problems you’re having training your bird, please post them on our Facebook fan page. If we don’t know the answer, we’ll find it – and share it.
Until next time