Clever African Grey Parrot Can Use Toilet On Command

Skylar was trained to poop in the loo when she was still a baby parrot.

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Parrot potty time.
John Virata

As a child, Pauline Guthrie always wanted an African Grey parrot. When she got into her 30s, her dream came true when she bought Skylar from a pet shop in Scotland. Guthrie, however, didn’t just want an ordinary parrot.

She set about training the bird to poop in the toilet, or “loo” as the toilet is called in Scotland, and her successful efforts can be seen in a YouTube clip posted by Viral Videos. It shows Skylar letting loose a “jobby,” or poop, as she sits on Guthrie’s arm above the toilet.

Skyler gets a biscuit after she poops in the toilet. Screengrab via YouTube/Viral Videos

Skyler gets a biscuit after she poops in the toilet. Via Viral Videos/YouTube

“I got Skylar when she was just 12 weeks old and toilet trained her when she was a baby,” Guthrie says in the YouTube video. “It was easy to do using treats. She learned how to do it in just a few hours and when she goes she’ll usually say ‘I’m a clever girl Mummy’ afterwards.”

The next clip shows Skylar walking on the toilet as Guthrie coaxes her to drop another jobby. “Do a wee jobby,” Guthrie says to Skylar. And she does, getting praise from Guthrie in the form of a biscuit. After, of course, she wipes her bum.

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  • Toilets are loaded with bacteria and germs. This woman is truly misguided. I feel for this poor bird!

    Albert Gallagher March 28, 2016 11:11 pm Reply
    • Really …

      Dawn March 29, 2016 8:59 am Reply
    • lol dont know about your toilet but mine is clean!!! you think id have her sitting on it if it wasnt? NO go clean your loo:)))))

      polly April 19, 2016 7:39 am Reply
  • Why would anyone let their parrot stand on an unsanitary surface splattered with dangerous bacteria including E. coli? Unless that toilet is clean enough that YOU would eat off it and allow your children to eat off it I would seriously rethink letting your parrot stand on it. They eat with their feet! E. coli can be responsible for causing all sorts of infections and death in psittacine birds, and can even penetrate through the pores in egg-shells, resulting in dead-in-shell embryos or death of recently hatched chicks. E. coli is identified as one of the most common causes of infection of the oviduct and reproductive tract in parrots. Some strains produce a toxin to affect kidneys and can result in acute renal failure. Thanks, but I’ll keep my parrot off toilet seats.

    GM Serino March 29, 2016 9:20 am Reply
    • Thanks GM, I was about to say the same thing. She must spend a lot of time with the steam cleaner

      diane April 5, 2016 2:44 pm Reply
  • Oh here come th know it alls????
    Wouldn’t like to sit on your loo jeez
    Mine however is cleaned everyday with steam cleaner and bleach then rinsed then steamed again then wiped with vetinary disinfectant. As if I’d put Skylar at risk. And I’m well aware how they eat fit you better if you cleaned your loo instead of posting stupid comments without facts. Try asking next time. Skylar the African grey has a fb page have a lookand ccontact me for any further concerns when you have finished cleaning your loo! Have a nice day!

    pauline April 2, 2016 3:37 am Reply
  • I have 2 cockatiels that I trained both to poop on command. They perch on my index finger and I raise my thumb, say poop and when they did they got to be on my shoulder which was their reward. It only took them a few times of this before they picked up on it. Just goes to show that parrots of all sizes can be traied to do simple tricks, but it is nice to see others training their birds in the basic training expected from a dog or cat, as it makes for a better trained bird.

    Jessica April 5, 2016 7:04 am Reply
  • Here here, Pauline ………. c’mon peeps, keep your nasty and negative comments to yourself!!!

    Elka April 5, 2016 8:07 am Reply
  • Pauline… I run a rescue, but a few of my own parrots are trained to poop command. Sadly people respond before asking or reading. I get that all the time, and just sit back and rex about it. Getting defensive doesn’t work either but that is an age thing you will learn about in time. 🙂 Keep doing what you feel is best and ignore the others. Ask your vet when in doubt.

    Paula April 5, 2016 4:31 pm Reply
  • Hi I have an African grey who is about 10yrs the person I bought the parrot from wasn’t sure if it was a girl or boy, Jojo my parrot loves guys but not females and tends to ruffel feathers and bites – is there any way that I can stop him/her from biting everyone

    Yvonne April 21, 2016 6:04 am Reply
  • Greys are so smart owners should take advantage of their intelligence and work with them to learn as many tricks (including potty training) as possible. It keeps the bird active and happy. Well done! Love your post! My bird goes over the trash can or anywhere I tell him to go poo. ????

    Lea April 24, 2016 6:01 am Reply

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