Happy National Bird Day everyone! As a teenager, we had zebra finches in our home and they were amazing to have in our home however, while they did bring joy, they did also come with some interesting quirks that other pets don't have. So, to celebrate today I'm sharing 5 awesome reasons Birds can make amazing pets (for the right humans) and 5 things you'll want to keep in mind before bringing one into your home.
5 Reasons Why Birds Make Amazing Pets
1. Birds Are Intelligent and rank near the top in intelligence among the animal kingdom.
2. Birds Need Minimal Grooming due to being naturally very hygienic animals, their owners can often maintain their pet’s health and good looks with a quick nail trim occasionally and a shower of plain water once or twice a week.
3. They are quite suited for Stay-at-Home Households because they are creatures that flock, meaning that they are used to having companions at all times. A single bird will want a friend as much as humans do. They love staying at home as much as any good homebody does.
4. No Need to Walk Birds. As anyone who has ever owned a dog knows, sometimes our four-legged friends pick the most inopportune times to need to go outside to go potty—which has to be done several times a day, sometimes at night, and regardless of bad weather. Cat owners have to scoop their kitty's litter box several times a day to keep it clean and control the smell. With a pet bird, you never have to worry about this because they can be trained to use the bathroom in their cages. Sure, you have to deal with cleaning the cage, but you generally only have to worry about that once per day.
5. Tenants who own cats or dogs are often charged a monthly “pet fee”. Most landlords, however, do not consider birds to be a "pet" and sometimes do not impose a monthly fee for them. For this reason, a bird can be an economical pet choice for renters.
5 Things to Remember Before Adopting a Bird
1. The most common thing many people don't realize when adopting a bird and one of the biggest reasons they end up being rehomed is that birds are long-lived companions. Many bird species live extraordinarily long lives, some living for more than 100 years! Before adopting be sure to learn a lot about any bird that you'd like to adopt. I highly recommend contacting places like the BC Exotic Bird Society or Greyhaven Bird Exotic Bird Sanctuary for great information.
2. Birds are noisy and it doesn't really matter which species you get (parakeet, lovebirds, cockatiels, or parrots), you will soon find out that they are all noisy. If you want a quiet bird, don’t get a bird. It comes with the territory. Even though not all of them can talk, they can still chirp, squawk, tweet, scream, and much more. Out in the wild, their powerful voices are meant to travel over great distances. So before you decide to take one home, you need to prepare for this fact, as it can reach unbearable levels.
3. Birds are sensitive to smells which means scented candles and oils, as well as air fresheners and the like pose health risks to birds. This is due to them having very sensitive respiratory systems that make them vulnerable to chemicals and fumes in the environment. As such, smoking is also not advised whenever near a bird. Likewise, one is advised to wash their hands thoroughly after smoking before handling a bird. A bird’s sensitive sense of smell can also slightly affect your cookware preferences. With a bird in the household, non-stick cookware and Teflon should be removed and replaced with alternatives as these items emit an odorless fume that can be fatal to birds.
4. Birds are messy + love to chew! Birds eat non-stop during the day and that means that the area around their cage, in particular, should be vacuumed regularly as the debris from food and their droppings usually accumulate there. It is innate in birds to also chew and destroy wood. You may think that only woodpeckers do it, but actually, all of them love to chew. Be sure to note that if you do provide wood for your bird to chew, make sure it is safe for them as some wood is toxic to birds for various reasons. So be sure to do that homework!
5. Birds wake up early! The early bird gets the worm is more than just a metaphor so be prepared to adjust your sleep schedule when you have a pet bird. They’ll even start making a fuss if you aren’t there to serve breakfast when they’re awake. So be sure you take note of what time they usually get up and adjust accordingly.
There you have it 5 reasons they're amazing and 5 things to consider before bringing one home and into your life. If you love birds and don't think one is in the cards for you - please be sure to check out Greyhaven Exotic Bird Sanctuary - they are truly phenomenal and can always use more volunteers and donations to keep helping amazing exotic birds in need. If you have a bird - be sure to share your amazing fine feathered friend with us today! I'd love to see them!