Pet Cockatiel Parrot Birds - How to Care For, Train, and Feed


Cockatiels are members of the cockatoo family. They are considered to be a parrot, as they have a curved hookbill and zygodactl feet. Cockatiels are social birds and owners should be commit to caring for these pets for at least an hour each day.

Food and Feeding of the Cockatiel

Maintaining a proper and nutritious diet is key to having a healthy cockatiel. Bird seed should be a good quality cockatiel seed mix. Do not use regular parrot mix for feeding. One teaspoon a day of bird seed is sufficient.

Cockatiels should also be fed pellets and sprouted seeds. Supplement their diet with healthy fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis. An all seed diet will result in an unhealthy or overweight bird. Fresh water should always be available.

Never give a cockatiel chocolate, avocado, or alcohol. These type of substances can kill the bird.

Cage Size and Exercise for a Cockatiel

Maintaining a proper and nutritious diet is key to having a healthy cockatiel. Bird seed should be a good quality cockatiel seed mix. Do not use regular parrot mix for feeding. One teaspoon a day of bird seed is sufficient.

 

Cockatiels should also be fed pellets and sprouted seeds. Supplement their diet with healthy fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis. Fresh water should always be available.

Cockatiel Health

Cockatiels will conceal an illness for as long as possible. Owners need to observe their cockatiel daily to learn normal behavior and if anything seems odd or out of the ordinary, the bird may be seriously ill.

If signs of an illness are present, the cockatiel should be taken to a veterinarian as soon as possible for treatment. Signs of an illness can include but are not limited to:

  • abnormal droppings
  • abnormal breathing
  • abnormal sleep pattern
  • any change in normal activities
  • abnormal feathers, feather growth, or molt
  • bleeding
  • discharge from the eyes, beak, or nostrils
  • disorientation
  • weight loss
  • drinking more than usual
  • drooping head, tail or wings
  • falling off perch
  • loss of appetite
  • vomiting
  • sitting on bottom of cage
  • hunched over posture
  • tail constantly moving up and down

Training a Cockatiel

Cockatiels are extremely docile and gentle birds. This makes them a perfect choice for a first pet. Keep in mind, they are noisy and will chirp, hiss, whistle, or screech when they want to get their owner's attention. Forming a strong bond with the cockatiel is a must for trick training. Training the cockatiel not to bite is often a challenging task.

Cockatiels can be trained to step onto a finger and can be trained to pet. Socialization at an early age is a must in order for the bird to be comfortable and not afraid. Start by offering the bird a favorite treat to encourage interaction.

Cockatiels are able to mimic words and phrases. Male cockatiels are more vocal than females.

Considerations Regarding Cockatiels

Keep in mind a cockatiel has an average life span of 12 to 15 years. It is not unusual for a cockatiel to live to be 20 years old. Cockatiels crave affection and attention. Owners must be able to spend adequate time with their pet each day to meet the bird's needs. Exercise and a proper diet are essential in the health and well being of the cockatiel. They make amazing pets and are a welcome addition to the family.