A New Parrot

Image

So if you follow our YouTube or our Instagram, you already know we got a new Parrotlet. Very sweet boy. He was hatched on March 11, 2019 and is our very first store bought bird.

I got him from Ziggy’s Feathered Friends in Dorchester, Ontario. I’m so against getting birds from pet stores that I keep worrying something may be wrong with him (bad past experience). Ziggy’s is great so I’m sure nothing is wrong but my anxiety can’t help it. He is quarantined from the rest of the birds and I wash my hands after interacting with him. He is parent-raised so I’ve been slowly engaging with him. He is very energetic and has such a beautiful personality. I’m recording our interactions for our “Training and Taming Tuesdays” segments on our YouTube channel.

This first week with him, I’ve asked my YouTube and Instagram families for help naming him. The top 5 names have been: Ziggy (my name suggestion), Cloudie, Sky, Pisces and Azure. First name to get 10 votes will be his name. So please pick one. Once a name has been chosen this will be updated.

Parenting Parrots

Advertisements

New Bird – New Food

Image

When you get a new bird, you want to keep them on the diet they came to you on. After a few days = 2 or 3 days you can start doing 70% the food they came with and 30% the pellets you want them on and every day make the gap go smaller and smaller until you are only giving them the pellets you want them on.

This is only if you want to change their diet. Most of my parrots I do change their diet because I give Harrison pellets and a lot of breeders do not feed Harrison’s for many reasons. 1 – It’s all brown and organic so not intriguing to choose and 2 – it’s more on the expensive side of a pellet diet. If you do not want to change their diet then this process is not needed.

Now if you want to feed fresh foods, where should you start? Well, what do you have in your fridge? Let’s start with easy stuff like:

Carrots                     Apples – No seeds (it’s a complicated topic so better to just avoid seeds)
Snap Peas                Oranges
Broccoli                    Pomegranates (Very messy to clean up after)
Cauliflower             Bananas
Sweet Potato           Kiwis
Bell Peppers            Pears
cover_photo_1513597249006

When introducing new fresh foods, you need to approach it like you would for a new baby, one item at a time for a few days. Once you realize that there is no aversive reaction to it then you can introduce another new item. I would say one new item every 3 days.

As for table cooked food, I would wait to introduce that until you are comfortable with your fresh fruits and veggies selection but some cooked food you can eventually try is:

pasta
rice, (be careful when you serve these that it’s not breeding season)
eggs
shrimp
chicken
oatmeal
shredded wheat cereal with no milk
whole wheat bread with organic jam

If you have tried feeding the fruits and veggies or pellets and your new parrot isn’t taking them, there are a few steps you can take. Fruits and veggies can be chopped, sliced, diced or pureed. Made different ways can have different results. Even giving them the foods at different times during the day can have a different effect. If that doesn’t work you can always try some Red Palm Oil on top of the fruits and veggies or pellets. A little goes a long way. Some parrots love the Red Palm oil and some don’t so it’s a hit and miss but make sure it’s RED palm oil. Pretending to eat the food first and then giving it to your parrot will work if you find your parrid to be bonding with you.
DSC_0062

Also, just keep trying for at least a week before giving up on that particular food type and don’t get frustrated. It’s not the end of the world if your parrot doesn’t like apples. Just like humans have specific likes and dislikes so do birds so respect your bird’s wishes. Keep in mind that just because they may not like it now doesn’t mean that two years from now they will still not like it so you can still continue to try to give it periodically and see if “Today is the day”.

Parenting Parrots

First Things to do with Your New Parrot

Image

You just got a new parrot, you are all excited and want to start playing with it right away. BAD IDEA!!! I don’t care if your parrot was the friendliest bird in the world at the breeder’s. The first time in a new home can be very traumatic and you should proceed with caution. If you know the bird is in a good place then this process should move by really fast for you.

1) You brought your bird home, you place the carrier or box inside the cage if you can and leave it open to let the bird come out into the cage when it feels comfortable. If you can’t put the box/carrier in the cage you have to find a way to quickly get the parrot from the carrier into the cage without any interaction.

1508803737124

Purrain’s 1st time in the house

2) Leave the bird alone so it can observe it’s surroundings and get comfortable – 24 hours if you can.

3) Do trust building exercises (day 2):
Sit and read softly by the cage
Sing nursery songs
talk on your phone but quietly
eat beside the cage
Basically you want to do calming activities that don’t involve a lot of movement or loud noises and ignore the bird (I know this is the hard part but think about the long term affects over short term gain)

If you do this and see that the bird is not cowering away from you, not showing any fear but instead is coming to the side of the cage where you are sitting and interested in you then I would do the same thing but with the door open. Before opening the door though you might want to just put your hand on the cage near the bird to test out it’s comfort level with hands and if all is well then teach clicker training, target training and step up training in the cage presenting treats through the bars but if your not interested in those things then go ahead and open the door.

DSC_0222

Purrain listening to me read

What you are doing by opening the door is inviting the parrot to come out and explore without any pressure from you. This is the ideal situation but sometimes things aren’t so pretty and simple. If not, then you need to go back to the very beginning and sit further away from the cage until the parrot shows calming responses and you can slowly move closer.

More trust building exercises include the”Blinking game”, the”sleeping game”,  basically copying games. When you can successfully say you have accomplished these you are ready for Clicker training, target training and step up training.

1509101247850

Purrain Engaged

A lot of people are impatient and want to let their bird out right away. I only say not to do this because you can open the cage door, your  parrot comes out but then wont let you put it back in. Therefore causing a good experience to turn bad and you want to avoid bad experiences.

If you are interested in seeing Purrain’s 1st days home please subscribe to our youtube channel so you don’t miss out. Also if you want to learn more about trust building exercises please click on the follow button so you don’t miss any new postings that might be able to help you and your feathered friend!

Thanks for your support!

DSC_0302

Finally out of the cage

Parenting Parrots