Becoming a Bird Aficionado: Care and Feeding Tips


People in urban environments often live in places, such as apartments, where pets like dogs or cats aren't allowed. For those who still want to enjoy the companionship of an animal without worry of allergies, excessive smell or mess and high costs of cleaning or care, a bird might be an ideal choice. Of course, birds are happiest when they can exist outside, in trees. However, caged birds can also enjoy long and content lives if they are well loved.

Looking for Healthy and Appropriate Birds

First, decide which kind of bird is best. Larger birds like parrots live a long time, up to fifty years. They can be taken out of the cage, petted and even learn to talk, but they are also very noisy and demanding. Smaller birds such as finches or canaries many only live two or three years and they sing beautifully. Of course, they cannot be handled and letting them out of the cage may be dangerous as they often fly into windows in a panic or are susceptible to becoming toys or food for other animals. Choose the bird that seems most appropriate to one's lifestyle and level of commitment.

Secondly, purchase the bird from a breeder rather than a pet store. Regardless of where they are bought, make sure the bird is lively, bright, sleek of wing and not sneezing, hiding its head in its plumage or displaying other signs of illness, including a loss of appetite. Find a good avian vet and take the bird for a check up every year as well as shortly after purchasing it.

 

Taking Care of One's Feathered Friends

Birds are social creatures. Thus, purchasing two birds is always preferable to buying just one. Although male and female birds rarely mate in captivity, they still enjoy each other's companionship and will sing to and groom each other.

Purchase as large a cage as is affordable, making sure the birds can't get stuck between the bars and that there is room for the birds to fly sideways. The perches should be natural and surrounded by other organic elements like foliage, cuttlefish bones and nesting zones.

Make sure that food and water dishes are readily accessible and cleaned, as well as replenished, on a daily basis. Birds like a wide variety of foods in their diet. 50 percent of the bird's diet should be seeds and grains with the remaining half being constituted from fruits, veggies, yoghurt and boiled egg.