Your E-mail:
How would you rate whether or not your healthy pet bird is a finicky eater (1 means not finicky at all; 5 means very finicky.)


Printer Friendly

Is Caging A Pet Bird Abusive?

Follow these tips to make a bird cage your pet bird's home.

By Liz Wilson, CVT, CPBC

A pet bird should consider its cage to be home, sanctuary and safety. This also appears to be the case with dogs that are properly crate trained. Instead of viewing their crate as imprisonment, they seek it out when they want time to themselves. Rather like having your own room.

Refusing to lock birds in cages can allow them too much freedom, and this can lead to serious troubles in our homes. As they become sexually mature, many pet birds take increasingly larger spaces as their own personal territory. This is a natural progression related to reproduction, and it can become seriously problematic if a bird starts to enforce which humans are and are not allowed in this territory.

From my experience, this level of “freedom” for a pet bird often ends up costing a psittacine its home. Some bird owners claim that they do not need to lock their parrot in its cage because their bird “never gets down” from the cage, but we should be cautious about predicting future behaviors in our pet birds. Psittacines are intelligent animals that continue to learn throughout their long life spans.

Make The Bird Cage A Bird Haven 
Some pet birds behave as if cages are abusive because they have learned that a cage means only negative things like isolation. Owners need to change that perception from negative into positive. Using the basics of operant conditioning, offer special food treats once the bird goes compliantly into its cage. Once in, immediately remove the bird again, and allow more play time outside the cage before returning it to the cage again. Keep sprinkling positive rewards into the training, and a bird will learn that going into the cage is a rewarding experience.

An overly dependent pet bird also tends to dislike its cage, because being alone is not a happy thing to the psittacine. Incapable of being content unless it is physically attached to a human, the overly dependent bird is rather like a child with a broken television or video game — there’s nothing to do.

The overly dependent bird desperately needs to learn to amuse itself, as over-dependence in a companion psittacine is likely to lead to home-threatening behavior problems such as excessive screaming, aggression and/or feather destruction.


 Give us your opinion on
Is Caging A Pet Bird Abusive?

Submit a Comment or
Join Club
Earn 1,000 points! What's this?
Reader Comments
good!
susan, bronx, NY
Posted: 11/19/2011 7:11:26 PM
good article
alex, westchester, NY
Posted: 11/19/2011 7:07:36 PM
So true!
james, brooklyn, NY
Posted: 11/12/2011 8:42:19 PM
Great article
melinda, westchester, NY
Posted: 11/12/2011 8:38:41 PM
View Current Comments
Top Products
d
BirdChannel Home | Bird Breeders | Bird Species | Related Links | BirdChannel Editors and Contributors
DOGS | CATS | FISH | HORSE | REPTILE | SMALL ANIMALS | HOBBY FARMS
                       | Birds USA |  
Disclaimer: The posts and threads recorded in our message boards do not reflect the opinions of nor are endorsed by I-5 Publishing, LLC nor any of its employees. We are not responsible for the content of these posts and threads.
Copyright ©  I-5 Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.
Our Privacy Policy has changed. Your California Privacy Right/Privacy Policy
Advertise With Us  |  SiteMap  |  Contact Us  |  Terms of Use  |  Community Guidelines | Bird eClub Terms
BirdChannel Newsletter Signup | Link to Us | About Us | More Great I-5 Sites
Gold Standard

*Content generated by our loyal visitors, which includes comments and club postings, is free of constraints from our editors’ red pens, and therefore not governed by I-5 Publishing, LLC’s Gold Standard Quality Content, but instead allowed to follow the free form expression necessary for quick, inspired and spontaneous communication.

Become a fan of BirdChannel on Facebook Follow BirdChannel on Twitter
Get social and connect with BirdChannel.



Hi my name's Griffin, Rest in Peace my Angel 11/28/13

Visit the Photo Gallery to
cast your vote!
Information on over 200 critter species