Should humans have birds as pets?

by John Fahlsing
(Saint Petersburg, Fl.)

Baby and the fat guy... (Quaker Parrot)

Baby and the fat guy... (Quaker Parrot)

Yes, but if you just want a pet then by all means treat it as a pet, care for it, feed it, talk with it but remember this....

A bird is for life, your or theirs. They get used to you, expect to see you at certain regular times and they do wait for you. I can hardly get the key in my door and my free roaming Baby starts squawking for me. The routines are important to them as well...

He waits for me to get ready for the shower, grab the towel and swoosh he on the shoulder and we're off. Afterwards, he waits for the usual dry off, out of the shower, Daddy gets dressed, and swoosh he's back on the shoulder, or on the table for some play time, depends on how he feels.

I believe birds train their owners as well, if he don't want to play or feels like just napping, i turn the tv sound down, or www and let him be. He will wake up, come to Daddy, and we socialize.

I wouldn't have any other friend in the world and I hope he outlives me.

Birds are for life, you learn to train them, they learn to train you.

He still doesn't talk yet, but we do communicate very well.


Comments for Should humans have birds as pets?

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May 25, 2012
Pet Parrots are great!
by: Sultana Zamani

I too have two ring-necked parrots one male and one female. The male - (Andy) is very disciplined and systematic while the female - (Chutki) is less for discipline and manners. The female one is very fond of my husband while Andy is fond of me. In 2007 I lost my niece in a car accident and we had to go to Iran so chutki saw that we put our clothes in a suitcase and the next day before our flight we dropped our parrots at a friend's house who also has parrots. When we returned after 3 months the female one was very angry with my husband and she bit him many times and for 2 years that we stayed in that house my husband could never remove clothes from the cupboard because she would scream and bite him thinking he will go away again. This continues till we changed our house in 2009. So you see their little brains can store so much and they could also have psychological problems. Both my parrots are our world.

May 24, 2012
Birds as pets?
by: Anonymous

I have a Quaker parrot also and he was given to me by someone who didn't want him anymore because he made too much noise. Sure, he was noisy when I got him (it was driving me up a wall) but with training, love and lots of attention he turned out to be the greatest pet. I have had many types of birds over the years and Rocky is by far the smartest one of them all. We call him the "Einstein of birds". He doesn't "talk" but has different chirps for everything. I had to train myself to understand what he is saying.

He even has a special chirp when I'm cleaning. Whether it's with a rag, broom or vaccuum, he knows I'm cleaning and only makes that chirp when I'm doing so. How does he know this?

I'm amazed at how smart he is. He does a "happy dance" when I give him lunch. My other birds just sat there and could have cared less. We used to have a cat (she died) and in the morning I would open a can of cat food and Rocky would chirp good morning from under the covers because he knew it was time to get up. The cat passed away in December and if we open a pop top can, he still does the chirp. How does he remember that sound?

One of his food dishes is a half coconut shell that is screwed to the cage so when I clean it out of used seeds, I use a spoon to scoop them. He now takes the spoon up there and tries to scoop them too. Hard to believe that little pea brain is so smart. Life wouldn't be the same without him. I feel sorry for the people that gave him to me because they're missing out on a really great guy.

May 23, 2012
Should humans have birds as pets?
by: Linda

Your letter was very touching as well as accurate. Our birds will train us if we let them, and who can resist some of their cute antics. The truth of it is that they have roughly the emotional/mental development of 4-5 year old human children so also need limits set for them as you would do for a small human child. They will manipulate and take advantage just like young children, and it is our job to see that they are direct4ed into good behaviors over bad ones. If we think bad behavior is cute in a baby being handfed and laugh and do not direct bird into a good behavior to replace the bad one, then bird will grow into a spoiled brat who is difficult if not impossible to live with. This is where "getting rid of them" comes in, and it is human fault and not bird that causes this to happen.

Always remember when you hve a parrot for a pet a lot of them are going to outlive us and what kind of bird have we raised? Have we raised a well-behaved bird or one who screams, bites and generally hs his/her own way or the highway? The larger parrots end up in a number of homes during their long lives and all of them are not good homes either. Make sure if your parrot has a problem that YOU deal with it before "getting rid of the bird". Someone else will resort to abuse if you do not work on the problem behaviors before rehoming a parrot.

Again, thank you for your wise words and for your willingness to be a real friend to your bird. A lot of the above is for other people reading both our letters and hope they help the parrots have a better life.

Linda and her flying monkeys

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