New Cockatiel Very Afraid

I just got a new cockatiel a few days ago, he should be a little over a year old and he was left in a bad environment with a poorly maintained cage.

Will I be able to tame him to like me at his age? And also, whenever I clean/replace his food, water, cage, he goes into a frenzy, hisses, and flaps around his cage. I'm afraid that this might tramuatize him and make him not like me and/or want to bond with me? Is there anyway how I can clean his dishes and cage without scaring him??

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Oct 26, 2011
New Cockatiel Very Afraid
by: Linda

It is normal for a new bird to be very afraid of his new home and new caretakers. Bird's trust is earned not freely given which means you have a ways to go before gaining his trust.

Continue to clean cage and change out food and water cups as it is very important to keep cage, perches, toys and dishes clean at all times. Hopefully your cage has the swivel out cups which makes it easier to feed and water. If not, your bird will get used to you coming in to get the dishes so they can be washed and filled with food and water.

I also highly recommend an examination by an Avian Vet in your area. This needs to be done during the first week bird is in new home. The reason for this is that most new birds have been exposed to contageous infections in the pet stores, and moving around is very stressful for them, so their immune systems get low making them vulnerable for any kind of infection floating around.

Once your bird has a clean bill of health, you'll be ready to start changing him over to a high quality organic pelleted diet, and there are several organic pellets here. You will also be ready to begin taming and training your bird, and there are some training materials on this site.

Changing birds from low quality seed diet to the organic pellets takes time, and here is an article written by Avian Vet on how to go about it:

Switching Birds To Pellets article

Make no changes in diet and do not begin any taming or training until your bird has been examined by an Avian Vet for infections. A sick bird cannot have anymore stress, and changing diet and taming and training is very stressful. A sick bird can die while being trained, so make sure he has a clean bill of health or meds to take before any training.


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