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Re: Thanks so much

Posted by Cheryl on 6/16/05
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    The vet said I
    > shouldn't kiss him or stroke his back since this would lead
    > to sexual confusion (which made me think he would mature
    > faster than he apparently will).

    You can kiss your bird. I kiss mine all the time. You just
    need to be careful of saliva, as yours can make your bird
    ill. Kiss the top of the beak, or his/her head...You can
    also stroke your bird on it's back...Just be careful, once
    the bird matures, to not stroke him/her towards the bottom
    back area, as that could be taken as sexual.

    One person said to hold
    > him only at eye level,

    If you start having behavioral issues, then you can lower the
    bird to below your eye level. A bird caged higher than your
    eye level will feel like the "top" bird. No reason for the
    bird to not be allowed to nuzzle into your chin...The
    shoulder thing, I covered in my first post, and as Michael
    said, some birds are fine allowed on a shoulder...It needs to
    be stopped IF behavior problems start, but as long as YOU are
    the one to PUT the bird there and take him down, there
    shouldn't be a problem, becasue he will not see it as HIS
    choice.

    Even though I know he must be
    > nervous and scared with all the new things and people
    > around him, he hasn't bitten me or anyone in the family, or
    > even tried to.

    That's great. I believe that you can tell a lot about a
    birds personality while young, but do remember that a baby
    bird is like a human baby...and will have all the same things
    to deal with. You are in the honeymoon stage now...As the
    bird matures, hits adolesence, then sexual maturity, your
    ralationship may change...and when it does, it does NOT mean
    the bird doesn't love you, just means that he is growing up,
    as he would in the wild...Getting more independent and
    thinkign for himself. That is why it is so important to
    instill good habits now, instead of trying to solve problems
    later on.
    You should be teaching the bird to step up now, and practice
    it each and every day. Don't stop just becasue the bird has
    it down...I still do step ups with Darby.

    >
    > Should I get a play stand yet, or should I wait for him to
    > grow up a little bit more? I let him hang out on the top of
    > his cage and on the window ledge, and he seems to like it,
    > but other than looking out the window there's not much for
    > him to do up there.

    Yes, get a playstand. Have it in a different room than his
    cage is in. OPurs is in the room where we all are at night,
    and where the TV is. His cage is in the front room where it
    is more quiet. It is important for him to have an area to
    call his own that is neutral...I DON'T recommend letting him
    hang out on his cage top...When he gets older, he may get
    cage territorial...many Poicephalus do.

    I've got toys hung in his cage, but so
    > far he's ignored them--

    Mine has at least a half dozen toys in his cage, and 3 or 4
    on his stand. For Poicephalus, a swing of soem sort is
    important, and they love boings as well. The boing is rope,
    so be sure to keep your birds nails clipped and check for
    fraying of the rope from time to time. Have toys made of
    chewable wood, rope, sisel, leather, mine also love acrylic
    toys, and love to swing upside down from toys that have
    chain. They are, as a group, very playful, so household
    things are fun too...Plastic tops off of water bottles, for
    example. Mine like bells, but I get toys with bells that are
    large enough for the species, bot those little christmas
    bells..They are dangerous. If the bells have a flat,
    smallish clapper in them, I remove it before giving the toy
    to the bird.
    Is far as his hanging out on the window sill,if this is his
    only wondow, put the playstand there instead. Make sure your
    window sill is not painted with any paint containing lead,
    and know that he WILL start chewing the sill into shreds...