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Monday, November 23, 2009
Sing Your Pet Bird to Sleep

By Melissa L. Kauffman, Editorial Director of BIRD TALK and BirdChannel.com
Share in the adventures of Melissa Kauffman's experiences in bird ownership in Life in the Bird House.

Deacon, the blue-headed Pionus parrot, is annoyed by lullabies 
Deacon doesn't seem to like his night-night song all that much.

One of my ferret friends from my days on Ferrets Magazine e-mailed me the other day with a fascinating problem that one of pet bird-owning friends was having with her parrot. I sent the e-mail to editor Laura Doering to cover in a future issue of BIRD TALK magazine. However, one thing that struck me in the e-mail was how the pet bird owner sung a lullaby to her parrot every night — and her parrot seemed to really enjoy it. It was part of their daily routine.

Of course, I immediately thought, “I am a horrible pet bird owner.” Every night, I turn off the light in the cockatiels’ room and tiels whistle good night. I tell them good night and that I love them. It has worked for us for 17 years. Now Deacon, the blue-headed Pionus parrot I adopted this year, and I don’t really have a bedtime routine. I say, “Night, night, Deacon.” I tap his platform inside his cage and, if he is in a benevolent mood, he swings off the cage door and climbs into his cage to the perch platform. I’ve put a mirror and a cuddle buddy next to the platform and he sleeps there — happily, I guess — every night. I then cover his bird cage and sometimes he says, “Hello, Deacon,” which is pretty much all he says.

So I thought, how about if I sing him a night-night song? What can it hurt? So I made up a little song and I sit on chair next to his bird cage and sing it to him. He is in the bird cage on his perch platform, not yet covered, when I begin to serenade.

Has it brought us closer together? Has he started to sing the song or whistle with me?

Absolutely not. He just looks at me. No reaction.

Hmmm, perhaps he doesn’t like my singing. Oh well, I will keep trying it and perhaps at some point, it may help us bond. My dog Tampa seems to like it, so at least that’s something. Although, I think he just likes to stare at Deacon. (He is a hound.)

Let me know if you have a night-night song. Maybe yours will work better.

 Deacon’s Lullaby
Good night Deacon, good night
Sleep tight, Deacon, sleep tight
I’ll see you in the morning
Tomorrow won’t be boring
So good night, Deacon, night-night

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Reader Comments
I sing to my birds, too. My singing voice is terrible, but our birds like it when I sing to them. (Or maybe they pretend they like it). ha ha :)
Cindy, Tennessee, TN
Posted: 2/3/2010 6:22:33 AM
There's that adorable cutie pie! Keep singing anyway, Melissa!
Sue
Sue, Yorba Linda, CA
Posted: 12/14/2009 12:25:59 AM
I'm glad I'm not the only bird owner that sings their birds to sleep! Every night I put my ten cockatiels in their cages and sign my bird version of "You are My Sunshine" and "Nighty-Night". Sometimes my two year old Romeo signs his own version with me. By the time I'm finished they're all in dream land!
Paula, St. Petersburg, FL
Posted: 12/2/2009 2:14:40 PM
Perhaps Deacon likes Classical music!
David, Buffalo Grove, IL
Posted: 11/30/2009 10:57:00 AM
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