Dear Lola,

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If words could express my disappointment in losing you, they would fill up the world. I never knew a person could feel such a deep lost for a companion animal until the night I laid with you in my arms, begging you to live but knowing you were taking your last breath. I still consider that day to be the worst day of my life because I failed you. Lola, I could never know what happened with that vet clipping your wings but you definitely set me on the path to realize how important wings are to a parrot especially if that parrot is already a timid parrot. Although that clip was against my will, I regret using that vet because another may have listened to my demands of no and you would still be here with me. I’m sorry and I hope you are happy wherever you may be and realize that I loved you as if I had given birth to you myself.

Lola, was my Galah Cockatoo. I consider her to truly be my first introduction to the parrot community and I bought her with no knowledge of what it meant to be a parrot owner. Just knew I liked how she looked and I wanted a bird. I don’t regret having Lola, I just wonder if she would have been better off with someone else. Would she have lived longer? Been happier? OR was she destined to be with me, who would fail her in the end? When I got Lola I drove 4 hours to pick her up and 4 hours to bring her back. When we met she stepped up to me with no problem and had no hesitation even the breeder said we were meant to be. Lola spent most of her days out of her cage and with me wherever I went. She was kept in a very tiny cage at the breeder so I suspect she didn’t truly get a chance to learn how to fledged as she never flew. I would see her open her wings and flap but she never took off. I started doing research on parrots and came across Birdtricks.com, they were my first introduction to parrot training and taming. I immediately bought their dvds and went to work. Before her first vet visit which would change her forever she had already learned how to step up perfectly, wave and turn around.

I didn’t want to bring her to a vet for fear she may catch something so I had the vet come to me. This vet ignored my wishes for a fully flighted parrot. Proceeded to tell me, it was better to clip her wings as she would be more manageable and it was a safer option but I wasn’t having any problems with training Lola so I still said no thank you. She asked me for a towel and I went and got it, by the time I got back, the damage was done. She had clipped one wing already so I had no choice but to continue with the procedure. Then she trimmed Lola’s nails so short, my poor Lola no longer was able to grip her perches. So with no nails and no wings to help her balance as soon as they put Lola back in the cage, she fell straight to the bottom. I was devastated. The vet told me to put pillows and towels at the bottom and that she would stop after a day or two. I did what I was told but I wasn’t happy. All of Lola’s bloodwork came back perfect. But Lola no longer wanted to come out of her cage, she didn’t want to train, she didn’t want to be interacted with and the worst part is she never let her wings grow back.

Lola was my first bird. A Galah Cockatoo. She was suppose to be so full of life and she was until she seen the vet. I tried everything I could think of and nothing worked. I finally brought her to another vet to see if they could help. Re-did bloodwork, looked her over and was told absolutely nothing was wrong with her. She wasn’t plucking but she would damage her wings as soon as they grow back in. I started treating her like a plucker and I would give her toys that were for pluckers, hoping she would ignore her wings, bathed her with water mixed with aloe vera to try and help if she was experiencing any itches from the wings growing in. I even bought her a mop head that I would put on top of her cage to help distract her. Nothing worked. The new vet advised me that it must be psychological but had no other suggestions for me. I was lost, hurt and confused. I considered re-homing her wondering if a new environment would help but could never go through with it as I was too attached. I contacted an animal psychic in hopes that she would be able to communicate with Lola and get to the bottom of the issue once and for all. That psychic either was fake or for some reason just couldn’t connect to my birds.

Lola would live for 3 years with us. It was me, my son, Lola and Grayson, our African Grey. She didn’t come out to play or interact with anyone. I left her cage door open 24/7 and she remained inside. The day that Lola passed, we had left the house and came home to find her on the floor of my living room, looking like she was having a seizure, bright green poop coming out of her. I fixed up the travel carrier with towels and stuff to make it warm and comfortable for her. I brought her in my room and monitored her activity. She was dying and I knew it. All vets were closed so I called on the same vet, I blamed for Lola’s behavior but even she was unavailable to help. I couldn’t go to the emergency vet as I had just had a baby girl, wasn’t fully healed and had no access to the car at that time. Lola would live to the wee hours of the morning and pass on the blanket.

My lack of parrot ownership and trust in a vet, took my Lola from me. Since then I have been adding to my flock in order to help more birds to try and make up for the guilt I felt losing Lola. I have since lost 2 more birds unfortunately and although I know they weren’t as bad as Lola, I can’t help but continue to strive for a better tomorrow for the companion birds that are still alive.

Each parrot I lose has taught me something new. Lola taught me that birds need to learn to fledged and are better off being fully flighted so now all my parrots are. Piper taught me that I need to remove fresh foods as soon as possible and keep the cages spic and span in order to avoid pesticides from infecting the parrots. Nyx taught me to demand bloodwork from vets be done because she was sick from before she was rehomed to me and we should have realized that by how quick her beak would grow but again a vet denied my request stating that conures just didn’t take good care of their beaks. I’m glad to have known each and every one of these birds and although I miss them dearly they have made me a better me, a better parrot owner, a better companion to my parrots.

Lola, you will forever be in my heart and I hope I can continue to make you proud.

Parenting Parrots

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Bird Show and Expo Review

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I will give you a brief rundown, please watch the below video for a more detail review.

I went to the bird show on the Sunday of  the  event and it had a good turn out. Everyone was talkative and interactive. They had bird cages,  stands, play gyms, toys, food, parrots for the bird show and birds for sale. Everything seemed reasonably priced. For an example, they had a huge bird cage one that I could fit a macaw in for 300 CAD. Can’t find that type of deal anywhere!

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Cockatoos!!!

I’m really scared of my parrots catching a disease so the show allowed you to bring your own birds, I didn’t as people who were bringing in their birds were not required to show  proof of a recent vet visit. Even when we got back home, we stripped off our clothes and washed our hands before interacting with any of our flock.

I did purchase a few toys however they were all made of plastic so I would be able to disinfect them before giving them to my parrids.

Overall, it was a great experience and I would go back again in 2018 just to see how much more it evolves.

Please don’t forget to hit that follow button located at the bottom of the page and definitely subscribe to our YouTube channel as we have lots more videos on there way! Also, you can follow our journey through Instagram.

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A Golden Crowned Conure -My 1st time seeing one

Parenting Parrots

To Clip or Not to Clip? That is the Question

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I will be completely honest, I blame clipping of my Galah Cockatoo’s wings to be the cause of her death(Will be a storytime on our Youtube channel). Overall, she felt incomplete as a bird and because she barely had learned how to fledge at that time, she never understood the importance of her wings hence her breaking them every time they grew in. A lot of people clip their birds’ wings and justify it for different reasons, I don’t argue with anyone. I listen and understand their point of view but you know what my thought on it comes down to?!? THEN DON’T GET A BIRD!!

A bird is meant to fly, are you still a bird if you can’t fly?? I think that makes them a chicken or a turkey or a rooster but definitely not a bird…. I will never tell someone they are wrong for clipping but is it not selfish to clip a bird because you can’t take the proper precautions to keep them safe? Wouldn’t it be better to leave them in the pet store or at the breeder’s house so someone who doesn’t have to risk their “winglyhood”, for safety can take them? I’ve heard about many accidents with parrots who have flown away or flew into a fan, etc :(. But couldn’t those have been prevented?  Such as making sure windows and doors aren’t opened when the bird is out or by turning off that fan? Maybe I just don’t understand as I’m not in those situations to have to make those type of decision but regardless let’s think about the bird.

To Clip

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Part of a bird’s anatomy is their wings just like humans, it’s their legs. Let’s say someone broke my legs and said no worries it will fix, it’s only temporary. In that time frame I’m paralyzed, I can’t move like I want to – I am at the beck and call of others. I have to rely on others as I can’t do for myself like I normally would, this is the same for clipped birds. Now some people may say nope! It’s not like that. Clipping wings is more like getting a haircut as it doesn’t hurt the bird and it will grow back. Yes that is all true however it is still temporarily paralyzing them from making the decision to flight or fight.

I have clipped birds but they are only clipped because they came to me that way so I patiently wait it out until their wings grow back in. I used to clip my parrots’ wings all by myself, I have also went to the vet to get it done. I never thought anything more about it until I started watching and observing my birds and realizing how BEAUTIFUL it was to see them spread their wings and fly. I love it! I haven’t clipped my African grey in 4 years and although he barely flies whenever he does, I feel like a proud mommy.

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A lot of behavioral issues can arise from having a clipped parrot because of the lack of exercise. Flying is so important to parrots, it’s how they release all that built up energy so if you add flying plus foraging plus training and the perfect diet – YOU CAN ACQUIRE THE PERFECT PET! But without the flying aspect, what exercise can you give a parrot that would release the same amount of exercise that flying for 30 mins a day would help them release? One thing I used to do when Grayson’s wings were clipped is have him come out of the cage, I would hold on to his feet and tell him to flap his wings. He was great at it but it definitely was not releasing the same amount of energy that flying would have.

Once, I clipped Piper’s wings because people said it would make him easier to train and manage. Well let me tell you – I received a MONSTER from that. He went from never biting to always biting. He was miserable being clipped and now that he isn’t clipped anymore, he is back to his normal self. Yes, he flies from me but I understand that is his way of communicating to me to let me know he either had enough or is bored with what I’m doing etc….

There will always be pros and cons to clipping and not clipping your bird’s wings. It truly comes down to a personal preference. Do what’s best for you and for your parrot so you can both enjoy all that life has to offer.

 

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5 yr old Grayson

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Parenting Parrots!

All About Pets Show

I went to the “All About Pets Show” for the 2nd year in a row and I must say it’s a busy place however it’s a great place to educate your kids and yourself and see all the different animals in the world. This year I went with my partner, my son and my godson. Last year it was only my son and myself. Last year I was able to find everything I wanted and needed so easily however this year I felt overwhelmed and confused because I couldn’t find what I was looking for as easily. This year we interacted more with other people so I must say both years were well worth it and I would recommend it to others to attend. I will be going again next year.

So I bought the family pass which was 48.00 CDN. We got there by 1:30pm and left at 5pm so a good couple of hours spent. As soon as we walked in, we were greeted and given a bag and was on our merry way. Although this is a “PETS” show I feel the dogs dominate. We went straight for the cats since that’s not really of interest for us, I figured it was the fastest section to get through. The cats are mostly in carriers and are not out for touching by the public however the few that were out, were very nice.

We then found the reptilia truck, which we enjoy admiring every year. My son and godson got to hold a crested gecko. They also got to touch an alligator and see a snake wrapped around a woman’s body. The downfall with the reptiles this year is that I never seen any other reptile section :(. Last year we had reptilia but there was also other little reptile set ups around and my son truly enjoyed that. This year they fell short on that, I hope next year they bring them back.
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Next, was the bird section but again it seems they fell short in that area because I never seen as many vendors as I did last year. We seen the typical parrots like the conures, macaws, African greys, various cockatoos and so forth. Maybe I’m just being greedy but I wanted more. My son and godson got to hold ringneck doves but last year we got to help in bottle feeding babies and listen to parrots talk and watch them do tricks. I also went there in hopes to find unique toys for my African grey and galah cockatoo but I left empty handed. I wanted to grab some Harrison’s food and they weren’t available at any of the stops.

We went to the petting area and this section was more advanced which was great. They had all the horses in their stalls but at least we still got to peep at them through the stalls. If we stayed and watched a horse show then of course we would have seen more but no petting of horses this year. They had goat, sheep, llamas and of course just like last year baby chicks. My son and godson got to hold the baby chicks which I think is great for the kids to experience but their most enjoyable moment was feeding the Llamas. My son was calling the Llama “his buddy” as he feed him his food from the palm of his hands. You have to pay for the feeding but it wasn’t too bad as it was only 2 dollars for a small ice cream cone filled with pellets.

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There was a section for exotic pets (or something like that they were called) and their price I thought was ridiculous as it was 10 dollars for each person to enter the pen and play with the animals. The deal they had wasn’t too bad as it was 25 dollars for 4 but since I nor my partner wanted to go in, it didn’t seem worth it to pay 20 dollars for the two boys when I could have paid 25 for 4. They had a kangaroo, some muskrat looking thing… It’s like a monkey but looks like a stunk… You would have seen them in the movie the Madagascar and some other animals that I can’t remember their names.

We then were surrounded by dogs however although they did have a designated area for dogs they were all spread out all over the whole exhibition. Watching my son with the dogs made me wonder if a dog is the right pet for him…. I’m not sure. He was so patient and loving and even after petting and talking to everyone, he wanted to go back to see the little dogs and then the BIG leonbergers. I must admit I will be doing research on teacup Pomeranians and pomchi’s and Havanese dogs BUT I will not go back down that road unless I know it is the absolute best! Also I can’t have dogs in the apartment I live in so it will have to wait :(. I will be researching the best pet for a child who may have a mild case of adhd.

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I left feeling like my money was well spent and I had more knowledge than every! Especially when it came to a Havanese dog because it has real hair no fur, so hypo-allergic, small but not fragile and odorless of course…. Adult size is 12 lbs… I will definitely be looking into them….

I bought the kids food on our way there and right after we left we went straight to pizza pizza to buy a family meal. I refused to buy anything in there because for a bottle of pop it was $3.20 CDN 😦 but I expected that so that’s why I fed them on our way there!

It’s definitely a show I enjoy and I will be making it part of my yearly routine. If you haven’t checked it out yet, I would suggest making it apart of your outings for next year.

Parenting Parrots!

Followers/Subscribers

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1 million followers/subscribers EVENTUALLY is the goal however my goal for 2016 was to get at least 50 followers. Today is December 7th, 2016 we are currently at 19 followers. Technically that means we gained approximately 5 followers a month. Which I think is very good considering the fact that I knew absolutely NOTHING about blogging in August 2016 when I decided to truly start out on this blog.

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But with that being said though we are 31 people away from our goal for the end of this year…. So we got to come HARD and see if I can almost triple the amount of followers, I currently have.

I know your reading this and wondering why should you follow me. Well, because I am working on getting freebies to all my followers. You follow me and you`ll be included in that. Another reason is because you would be following a family! Supporting an individual like yourself. Another reason, is to learn something new! Another reason, is to help us cherish Lola – our baby galah cockatoo R.I.P!

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Point being – Come join our family and Together, lets MAKE THIS GOAL COME TRUE!!
(all pictures in this post are internet pictures, I own none of them)

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Parenting Parrots!

 

How to Treat your Parrots to a Healthy Snack

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Good Morning!

Today I decided to have something quick for breakfast as I’m running out the door to do laundry. I live in an apartment where we are not allowed to have washers and dryers in our unit, so I have to take the elevator all the way down to the ground level to share a washer and dryer with the other tenants of this building. I HATE IT BECAUSE I CANT TAKE ANY PARROTS WITH ME!!! 😦 Well I guess I could but don’t want to risk people complaining and maybe the bird getting in their way. Anyhow back to the topic at hand….

BREAKFAST!!!

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Being on maternity leave has really left my fridge empty. HAHAHA after 10 months with living off of 55% of my income, I am ready to get back to filling my fridge again but I will miss my kiddies and parrids (parrot kids) so much. This is a bitter sweet moment!! Today we are having a whole wheat slice of bread with jam! THAT’s it!

Something so simple and I can share it with my parrids.

A slice of lightly toasted whole wheat bread with jam spread on top, cut into four sections. I give one section to each bird. I do two slices because I have 7 birds. All the birds can eat this, even my lorikeets!

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Rasta enjoying his jam

So I’m not quite sure how the calories in a slice of toasted whole wheat bread may affect a parrot’s health however it has 75 calories but if you’re only giving a parrot a quarter section, I don’t think you should have to worry at all (for those that may be concerned).

(Please follow. We are trying to get 50 followers before the end of 2016. Thank you in advance.)

 

Parenting Parrots!

 

MY PETS!!! WOW What a Journey!

Hi,

I decided to start this post because I have soooo much to say! I’m 31 years old (still can’t believe it!) and I live in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. I just wanted to take this time to actually give you a brief rundown of what type of posts you will be seeing on here. Posts will be about parenting my beloved Parrots!! Everything you need to know and anything you want to know just ask!! I’m not a professional trainer but I do have a love and passion for PARROTS!!!

So let me start with the pg13 stuff first lol…. My PETS!

I’ve went through it all from 2009 to 2012 I went on a pet frenzy trying to find the perfect pet for me and my son. I was having issues… The very first pet in our home, we got from a friend and it was a 10 week old kitten who we named Diamond.

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She was great when we first got her but I soon came to realize a 10 week old kitten with a 3-year-old boy was NOT the perfect combination for me. Now it may work for others and if I wasn’t so consumed with school, work, my son and just getting used to being on my own, it may have worked for me but nope, I just couldn’t do it. So in September 2010 a whole year and some later, I decided I had to let Diamond go. She was pooping on my floor instead of her litter box, disrespecting my rules and it was just a mess. 😦 I do miss her at times but it was best for all of us to part ways.  After diamond came Sky, the cockatiel bird that I got from a vendor in the Jane and Finch mall… I should have realized something was wrong when I seen how hard it was for him to get her out of the cage but at this time I was blind to all that and thought I was a miracle worker. Plus how hard could taking care of a small bird be…..

BOY was I wrong…. My sister had a cockatiel named Jake (they soon realized Jake was actually a girl) and it was so tame and nice, I thought what a perfect pet and that’s why I went to go get this one. Well, this one did not want to be tamed, did not want to play with us and LOVED to bite hahahaha. Very aggressive. So I gave her to my sister thinking she would learn from the other bird. My sister took her in and Jake and Sky got along too great! They ended up bonding together even though they were both girls and my sister lost her nice, tamed bird. I even bought a book on cockatiels and nope she just wasn’t the pet for me and my son. My niece’s grandfather was a breeder of cockatiels and two minutes with Sky he had a tame, nice bird… I don’t know how he did it but he did. **Update on Sky: She is tamed but is a breeder bird. Apparently she loves to have babies. Go figure…**

Now I don’t want you to think I’m a bad person but I definitely spent like $10,000 dollars on cages, accessories, toys, pets and was unsuccessful finding the perfect pet. I spoiled every single one but after a while I was like nope this is not the one for us and I would have to find a new home for the animals. So I went through 6 rabbits, 6 dogs, 2 chinchillas (now those were my ideal pets but unfortunately they ended up passing :(), a hamster, 5 guinea pigs, and a Chinese water dragon. Anyhow, I finally stopped and just so you know I found homes for all of them. So I’m not an evil person.

The pets we do have now, who I will be blogging about are: a leopard gecko, blue tongue skink, bearded dragon, a Galah cockatoo aka rose breasted cockatoo and an African grey parrot.**Update: Pets are: Bearded dragon, African Grey parrot, Quaker parrot, Black capped conure, Indian Ringneck, Lovebird and green naped lorikeets.

The Leopard Gecko I got from the person, I traded my Chinese water dragon with. Now the gecko is up for sale not because I don’t want her but because she is my son’s pet and he is not doing well in school nor being responsible for caring for her. Her name is Sunshine and she is about 7 years old now. Still love her though, so for as long as we have her she will be included in this blog. We have had her for 2 years now. **Update on Sunshine: She found a new home.**

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The Bearded Dragon is our longest pet, we have had him since he was a few months old and he was purchased from P.J Pets. He is about two years old now. He has been with us through a lot. My son does chill with him often. He may not check his water bowl, or clean his cage as often as I would like but he will take him out to watch tv with him. Put him in a box and sleep near him. Let him out to run around in his room and shower him. Show him off to his friends and just relax with him. We call him, Ray. **Update on Ray: he is still with us. I just bought a leash so he can go outside with my son more often**

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Next my son has a Blue tongue Skink, he is our second longest pet. I think he is about two years old also and doesn’t really come out of his cage much. He is an Indonesian Blue tongue and hisses when we open the cage and touch him. But has never bit any of us. I would recommend a blue tongue to anyone as I LOVED feeding him food from a spoon. This Blue tongue’s name is Junior and he loves his Cat food! **Update on Junior: He passed in May 2016. R.I.P. We never really knew his age as he was a rehome at Petsmart so I’m thinking he was older than we originally thought.** We gave his cage to my nephew because we forgot that Ray, our bearded dragon could have used the 40 gallon terrarium. I miss him.** And of course that’s my precious troublemaker in the picture below, My son who I will refer to on this blog as “JuniorJay” lol. If you want to know more about my son and his adhd journey you can click on the other tab to read about that. I will be opening a new blog for that so stay tuned.

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Now onto My PETS! Let’s start with my Galah Cockatoo aka Rose breasted cockatoo. Lola was born on May 12, 2012. I received her in August 2012. Paid almost $3,000 for her. She came from a reputable breeder, I would definitely go back to that breeder again. I love Lola but I made many mistakes even though I read so many books before getting her. I listened to the vet that came to my house to do her wellness and dna check which I have regretted ever since. Now it may not be the doctor’s fault but she made Lola’s first experience a horrible one and Lola had only been with me for a little bit prior to the doctor coming.  Anyhow I will go more into detail when I do a blog strictly on Lola. Point being is, I’ve been having issues with her to the point I even brought her to another vet but I think Lola was seriously traumatized by the first one :(.  Anyhow this is my Lola and I’m working very hard to get her back to the loving, non-scared, fun playing parrot she came into this household as. **Update on Lola: Lola has died. She died in my arms with me telling her how much  I love her. Seems as if she had a seizure… I completely take the blame, as I feel I just did things wrong and it still hurts when I get up and Lola isn’t there to greet me… I dedicate this blog to her and she is my reason for trying to get parrot information out there so people realize how important it is to love these creatures and nurture them.**
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Now last but definitely not least… please welcome Mr. Talkative! My African Grey Parrot who was born on June 12, 2012 right behind Lola and came into our household the last week of October so only a few weeks after Lola. I did everything all the books tell you to do about introducing them and keeping him quarantined for 30 days etc. I took him to the vet for his wellness check and I also got him from a breeder, not the same one as Lola but still a breeder. Great breeder, I would buy from her again. Unfortunately Grayson and Lola even after being together for two years have still not bonded. Grayson can be intimidating and Lola is now a “chicken”. However now that I’ve been home for a few months and have done so much more reading and stuff I’m hoping to start trying again because I refuse to give up! So I will definitely be blogging about their interactions. Anyhow, Grayson talks TOO much he says Hi, Hello, What’s your name, Grayson, Lola, Mommy, Stick them up…. The list goes on and on… I’m hoping to train him to identify letters and numbers. As for Lola, I’m hoping to train her on more tricks. Anyhow that’s it for my pets. **Update on Grayson: He is still here flourishing, I’ve decided to keep him fully flighted so we are currently working on trying to get him harnessed trained.**

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I love all of them but of course Grayson and Lola are mine! I was wondering if Lola would be happier somewhere else but I can’t let her go without putting in the work. Since I’ll be off on Maternity – I should have more time and I plan to take her everywhere with us even if she decides to stay in her travel cage, I just want her around so she can get more exposure and hopefully that will help with her socialization skills. She is my biggest worry right now. **Update on pets: We have expanded our flock so we have added a Quaker parrot named Piper  – 2 yrs old, we got him when he was a baby. A Lovebird named Boss – Born here (I’ll explain that story in his personal blog) He is one years old now. A Black Capped Conure named Nyx – She was rehomed, we received her about a month ago – She is 3 yrs old right now. A 3 month old Indian Ringneck renamed Ringo – he was also rehomed,  the family had him for about a month named him Pepper and decided they couldn’t afford him, they had him living with their cockatiels all in the same cage. Also I’m currently waiting to acquire a baby Rainbow Lorikeet – right now it is 5 weeks old so still on 3 handfeedings a day, definitely not ready for its new home as yet. So stay tuned!!!**

Welcome to Parenting Parrots!