We all have friends or family members who are also enamored with our parrots. They pay more attention to our bird than other passersby and show a real interest in our stories. They use phrases like: “if only” or “maybe someday”. What better gift could there be than a parrot of their own to love?
While it makes sense to want to pass the moments of bliss you experience with your bird along to someone you love, one person’s joy can become another’s nightmare! It is a bad plan to give a parrot to someone as a gift.
Parrot ownership is NOT for everyone. Being one yourself, you know how much goes into raising a parrot the right way:
- The cost of a good quality cage and its accessories, toys, and food. Don’t forget the occasional vet bills and boarding expenses.
- The daily chores: changing cage liners, scraping poop off of grating, scrubbing perches and toys and cleaning flung food from floors, walls and ceiling.
- The beaked chair backs, tattered window coverings, unstuffed couch cushions, and modified computer keyboards and TV remotes.
- The deafening noise coming from announcements regarding the time of day, heated arguments with toys, and the trespassing neighbor’s cat.
- The time spent in the kitchen preparing a proper diet, providing enrichment and the online research while learning how to take care of the new parrot.
- The health or behavioral problems that can arise from botching up any of the above.
We all know that THIS is the reality with parrots. We may be more than willing to give of ourselves in these ways, but the average person might have NO CLUE what they are in for. Unless the recipient of your gift is a special kind of person who would not regard the above as “chores” but as labors of love, a parrot may be much less a blessing and more a curse.
Giving a parrot as a gift, for any occasion, could result in it being “re-gifted” to the local rescue!
Patty Jourgensen specializes in avian health, behavior and nutrition and has been working with and caring for rescue birds since 1987.