Birds are a lot like small children when it comes to boredom. If you don’t keep them constantly engaged and entertained, they can become grouchy, destructive and difficult to be around. When it comes to parrot care, because they are such intelligent animals, caring for cockatoos, macaws, african greys, and other pet birds may seem daunting.
However, preventing parrot boredom doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task. Fortunately, birds are also like small children in that they are pretty easy to entertain if you plan ahead.
To help you figure out the best ways to keep your bird happy, we have compiled five ways to keep your parrot from boredom.
1. Rotate their toys frequently.
It is extremely important for your bird’s cage to be a clean, fun and enriching space, especially when you aren’t home. Birds can engage in destructive behaviors like feather plucking and can even suffer from health problems if they don’t get enough mental stimulation.
Bird toys can be a bit expensive, so many bird owners opt to keep a “stash” of various types of toys that they rotate into the cage every so often. Puzzle and foraging toys are usually popular choices and can be filled with bits of delicious portions of food from their parrot diet for them to find, as long as this food is not perishable. Also, please remember to clean your bird’s toys within each switch. Birds also enjoy things with vibrant colors, interesting textures and shiny surfaces.
2. Feed them a varied diet.
One of the best things in parrot care that you can do for your bird’s mental and physical health is to feed it a healthy, well-balanced diet. This includes lots of fresh fruits and veggies as well as new kinds of mash food and a variety of seed and pellet mixes.
Bird Street Bistro is an excellent source for an excellent parrot diet, lovebird food and parakeet food, and they have special blends that appeal to pet birds of all types. Their selection of blends contain delicious flavors and foraging stimulating textures with top-quality ingredients that will make your bird excited about mealtimes and any parrot parent proud of your fid’s parrot diet. For more information on what you should feed your parrot, take a look at what parrot food I should feed my bird.
3. Give them plenty of exercise.
Wild birds are able to fly, forage and explore the world around them unfettered. Pet birds obviously don’t have this same freedom, so it’s important to provide them with plenty of physical exercise to keep them happy and mentally stimulated.
When possible, let your bird play outside of the cage for a change of scenery. Parrot owners should also provide plenty of exercise space inside of the cage as well. Ropes, ladders and other physically challenging toys allow your bird to burn off excess energy in healthy and constructive ways.
4. Spend time playing together.
Most birds are social creatures, and it is crucial to their mental health to give them the right amount of companionship and bonding time. Unless you have a mate for your parrot, you are the main source of social interaction for your bird. If you don’t spend enough time bonding and socializing with your parrot, it can lead to depression or misbehaving for attention.
Bird owners must set aside time every day to play with and handle their birds if they want the birds to be happy and well-adjusted. Playing games and chatting with your bird are excellent ways to prevent boredom and strengthen your bond. When you are handling your bird, be sure that you are doing so in the correct, “friends-only” way that doesn’t accidentally signal flirtatiousness, otherwise you may end up with a sexually frustrated bird.
Another great way to bond and socialize with your bird is to spend time trick training. Birds are highly intelligent and love to learn new things. Working on fun little tricks helps to keep your bird mentally engaged, and the extra reward treats will provide additional stimulation.
5. Curate a bird playlist for when you’re away.
No pet owner can be home all the time, and even if you are home, you’re sometimes unable to spend time with your bird. When this happens, consider turning on some music or television programs to make your bird more comfortable.
New sights and sounds provide lots of external stimulation for your bird, so leaving on brightly colored children’s programming or creating a special playlist of songs that your bird responds to is a great way to provide low-key stimulation while you are away.
When caring for cockatoos, macaws, lovebirds and parakeets, it’s common for owners to take note of the types of radio programs and music that their birds prefer so that they can save it to use while they are out of the house.
Keeping Your Bird Occupied Doesn’t Have to Be Complicated
Some parrot species are nearly as intelligent as five-year-old children, and they have a surprisingly complex range of emotions. The good news is that it is relatively simple to keep your bird mentally stimulated without exhausting yourself in the process.
New bird owners often have questions like, “What is parrot care?” They may also ask, “What are the right toys for my cockatoo?” Adding the additional perceived stress of keeping a parrot from becoming bored might seem like too much to handle.
However, the simplest strategy is to remember that variety is the spice of life. Whether you’re looking for toys to buy, food to try or tricks to learn, all you have to do is think outside the box to keep your parrot happy.