5 ways to get a good start with your new bird
by Bonnie Dater Jay
Congratulations, you have just brought a new bird into your circle of love and your life. But what now for new bird people? Let's find out.
1. Vet Exam. It's important to have a visit with an avian veterinarian to establish lab norms and take a look see be it a baby or adult bird you are bringing into your life.
2. Housing. The larges cage and play gym you can afford is best for your feathery friend. Stainless is wonderful, but powder coated is excellent as well and far more affordable. The cage is hopefully only for times when the bird cannot be left alone in the home when you are not present. I suggest that a small sleeping cage be used just for sleeping as opposed to a large cage in a noisy area. a small cage that is dark, warm and quiet allows for the best possible rest.
3. Perches should be appropriately sized for little or big toes.... and should be made of a variety of sizes and materials. Wood such as pine, madrone, citrus, manzanita and other bird safe wood should be used in a variety of sizes. But not just wood which is hard but raw, untreated rope with no frays that might catch one of those little toes or toenails. DO NOT USE SAND COVERED PERCHES as they are dangerous and will cause horrible and painful sores from broken skin which can become infected. They are a money making ploy and are despicable.
Non toxic ceramic or stainless steel food and water bowls are a must with fresh water at all times. Filtered water is preferable to tap water which contains fluoride which is a highly toxic substance. Entertainment should be everywhere and changed often.toys and climbing areas in abundance to occupy and challenge those bright little minds. If using plastic, be certain there are no small pieces that can break off to either be ingested or that have sharp edges that can cut soft skin. Be creative, but safe with your ideas. Change out the toys regularly.
4. A first aid kit and bathing supplies are a critical part of caring for a parrot. You can purchase one that is ready made for birds or you can put one together yourself. It's best to buy one that has a cautery tool included. This is a must have, easily accessible at all times.For bathing, each bird has their own opinion. Spray bottle for some, shower with you for others and some like a birdie bathtub of their own. A tub must be kept immaculate as they are going to drink from it.. For leaf bathers like greys, add a LOT of bird safe greens to the water to entice them to play and bathe at the same time.
5. A travel carrier is critical for trips to your veterinarian, emergencies when you need to flee from where you are and for any travel that will include your bird. Some birds are prone to motion sickness and if you see your true love's face turning green (not really) or any difference in behavior, cover the carrier so they cannot see the buildings or trees whizzing by and all will be well. Have a set prepared for where ever you are going so your bird has a place to be that is comfortable and familiar.