Before you decide to bring home a pet bird or parrot, make sure you know what you are getting in to.
Before you decide to get your first pet bird, there is a lot of research that you should do. Getting a parrot or pet bird is very different from getting a cat or dog. Parrots and birds, in general, live much longer than cats and dogs. They are also very sensitive to food and environmental changes. Taking in a parrot is a life long commitment. So how do you know if a pet bird is right for you?
Parrot and Pet Bird Dining Etiquette
Many people make the mistake of purchasing a parrot or pet bird for their children because they think that it will be a quiet and clean pet. Wrong – parrots and pet birds are not only loud, they are notoriously messy. Even small birds, like canaries, budgerigars (commonly referred to as parakeets), and cockatiels can become a big problem in a small room or apartment.
All birds have a tendency to throw their food out of their dish and, ultimately, on to your floor. Empty seed shells can pile up around a bird’s cage very quickly, making daily vacuuming a necessity even with small birds.
Parrot and Pet Bird Time Requirements
If you have never had a pet bird, you might think that owning a bird is similar to owning fish, but you would be wrong. Parrots and pet birds require a great deal of one-on-one interaction to remain happy and healthy. Pet birds are very intelligent and require stimulation to keep their minds active. A bored parrot can cause a lot of trouble for its owners. Parrots and pet birds who get too bored can begin to yell, bite, pluck their feathers or even self mutilate.
The Costs of a Parrot or Pet Bird
Keeping a pet bird or parrot in good health requires not only a substantial amount of time, but also quite a bit of money. Not all veterinarians are qualified to examine birds, so you have to seek out a specially trained avian veterinarian, which can cost considerably more per visit. Parrots and pet birds also require plenty of toys and special UV lighting to remain healthy. In addition, many species of parrot require a special diet, adding to the cost of food.
All in all, most pet bird and parrot owners will tell you that, despite all the hard work and expenses associated with being a bird owner, there is no better pet in the world. However, it is important to know what you are getting in to when you purchase or adopt a bird. Every pet bird deserves a “forever home,” so be sure that you are ready before you bring home a pet bird or parrot.