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the first parrot blog
Monday, September 20, 2004
When A Parrot Bites
Everyone who owns a parrot and everyone in a home with a parrot will receive a bad bite at some point in time. It may be because the bird was startled or was tired or decided it would rather not "step up". The reason may be that it was uncomfortable due to molting or hormonal changes due to the reproductive cycle.
Parrots remain pet quality as a result of being handled often and being a part of the daily activities of their family. When you receive a bite, your response could determine the future of your parrot as a pet quality bird.
It is hard to offer your hand to a bird that has recently hurt you without having fear. Let's talk about what not to do.
Do not physically discipline your bird. Parrots do not have a concept of right and wrong as do some domesticated animals such as dogs or cats. They are wild animals that adapt to your home but their instincts are rooted in their jungle homes. If they perceive you as a threat, because of a thump on the beak or a swat on the head, they will revert to defensive behavior such as biting more and more often.
Do not use a towel or glove to protect your hand. They look at a towel or glove as an object and may have a hostile reaction to it which reinforces bad behavior.
Instead, let the bird calm down. A little quiet time has a calming effect. (You can use this time to apply bandaids and/or antibiotic ointment to your wound.) When you do approach the bird, approach it as if it was a strange bird. It is most probably a bad idea to reach in and try to pet it or scratch its head and neck. Now is not the time to place hands near beaks.
Talk to it calmly, offer it a treat and open the cage door. Encourage the parrot to come out of the cage. Most parrots are least aggressive when they are on top of a cage or, better yet, on the floor. Once the bird is out of the cage offer it your hand to step up. If you act afraid you will reinforce the bad behavior. Parrot owners have to be brave in order to reap the benefits of the relationship.
- posted by J-Birds @ 1:12 AM |
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