DO|S & DON|TS
GIVE YOUR BIRD THE BEST CARE POSSIBLE
BY SHERRILL ROBINSON
Provide your bird with the largest cage possible. Make sure the bar spacing is such that the bird cannot get its head stuck. Cages with horizontal bars are especially good for climbing.
Provide natural branches for chewing and perches. Manzanita makes a good perch although is hard to chew
Provide bathing opportunities daily.
Wash your hands before and after handling your bird.
Cover vases so that birds cannot fall in.
Check droppings and behavior daily.
Feed only very well cooked meats, chicken, fish & eggs.
Keep blinds, verticals, etc., visible to prevent birds from flying into windows.
If your bird is scratched or bitten by a cat, take to a vet immediately.
Introduce new toys to your bird slowly. Hang outside where it can be observed by your bird.
Have a recent reference book handy. The Parrot In Health and Illness by Bonnie Monro Doane is a good example.
Quarantine all birds up to 45 days.
Bring each new bird for a post-purchase exam by a qualified vet. Buy from reputable vendors.
Always supervise your birds| time out of the cage.
Provide soothing music for your bird (Loud rock music could be disturbing.) Rainforest music is much appreciated.
Nuts in moderation are nice.
Provide fruit juice and small amounts of protein daily.
Wash cage down weekly. Disinfect monthly.
When traveling, use a pet carrier and secure with seat belt.
Place your bird in an area of the home in which family activities take place.
Approach your bird slowly if you have drastically altered your appearance, or are wearing a brightly colored hat, etc. Birds can become frightened and bite.
Provide an enriched environment. Toys should be rotated or changed frequently to prevent boredom.
Love your bird*DAILY!!!
Never use corn cob bedding. Birds can ingest this material, causing death. Better to use uncolored (or if you can find it, unprinted) newspaper.
If your birds| beak needs trimming, FILE it**don|t clip. Beaks can split and bleed.
Be careful when clipping toenails. Clipping too short can cause bleeding and make it difficult to perch. Keep styptic powder handy. Have pliers or a clamp available to pull out blood feathers.
Keep birds out of the kitchen. They can fly into boiling water or land on hot burners. Fumes from cooking can be deadly. Fumes from Teflon and self-cleaning ovens are toxic.
Many household cleaners (ammonia) are toxic to birds.
Do not feed avocado, chocolate, coffee, caffeine or rhubarb.
Do not keep so many birds that you do not have the time or energy for proper care.
Leaving toilet bowls open is a hazard.
Never house birds near air conditioning, heater ducts or in direct sunlight.
Do not fall asleep with your bird. You could roll over causing injury or DEATH.
Do not share saliva or allow birds to eat from your mouth. (Saliva contains harmful bacteria.)
Allowing a bird on head or shoulders can be dangerous.
Never buy a bird on impulse.
Don|t feed moldy fruit or veggies. Throw out uneaten food.
Do not place food dishes under a perch.
Never allow a bird to chew on electrical cords. Remove cords in proximity of cage.
When restraining a bird, never hold the chest tightly. This can lead to suffocation.
Never take a bird out side without checking that wings are clipped. Leaving 2 or 3 flight feathers can enable a bird to fly!
Do not smoke near your bird or allow others to.
Never strike a bird for any reason.
Never leave your birds unattended for extended periods of time.