Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Importance of Training Your Cockatiel: How to create a friend not a nusiance.

Cockatiels are very domesticated pets; however, without the proper training they can become unruly little annoyances.

Training is essential if you want to form a loving and affectionate bond between you and your bird. It does take some patience and practice, but once your cockatiel is trained both you and your bird will reap the benefits.

Many people who purchase cockatiels underestimate the importance of training.

Take for instance, an ad from Craigslist, which my Professor pointed out to us in class the other day. The article is titled, "Trade Cockatiel for Wedding Ring." The ad talks about how this man bought a cockatiel for his girlfriend last year, and while she loves it, he cannot stand it. He believes the only way to lessen the blow of giving away the bird is to give her a wedding ring.

However, what he fails to realize is that all the problems caused by the bird, which he describes in the ad could by solved with simple training. He says, "Cockatiels are great pets, except for the constant screaming, pooping, and absolute lack of affection for its owners." Training the cockatiel would solve these problems; in fact you can even teach your bird to be potty trained!

Understanding the bird's behavior would also be helpful, since the screaming could signal that the bird needs attention or is afraid. The affection for one's owner follows after the bird feels comfortable and is trained.

It is also important to have some knowledge about cockatiels before you buy one. They are not the right pet for everyone. I do not think he researched cockatiels beforehand. He says, "Harrington's wings have grown in since we got him, she thinks its cute when he buzzes by our heads at 100mph." Cockatiels wings NEED to be clipped for their own safety. Also, training cockatiels is much easier when their wings are clipped.

Training cockatiels makes them almost "human." They are smart little birds, and they will imitate you; however, without training they will keep behaving like a wild bird.

It is also important to train them as early as possible. You can start training your cockatiel the day after you get it. When Ryan found Loki she was already about a year old, I started training her right away and she learned. A one year old bird is considered "older" when it comes to starting training; they will be harder to teach.

Another thing I found funny after looking at the pictures of Harrington in the ad, is that he is unmistakably a she! The coloring is too pale for it to be a male. This is another reason why one should have knowledge about the species before purchasing.

Ryan, my boyfriend would NEVER try to sell Loki because he knows nothing would fill the void of losing my bird. I would rather have a bird on my shoulder, than a ring on my finger!

Training would allow this guy to give his girlfriend a wedding ring and still keep her cockatiel. It will take patience, but it can be done. Training makes all the difference when you have a bird. It will be the deciding factor between having a friend or having a nuisance.

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