Taking in a temporary feathered friend is a wonderful way to help parrots and it doesn? have to be a major hassle. With a little bit of planning and thought, you can ensure that a parrot adjusts to its new surrounding and is prepared for a great new future life.
Getting Set Up Before Your Foster Parrot Moves In
Think through everything you can before your foster parrot moves into your home. The parrot should have been examined by an avian veterinarian and hopefully gone through a quarantine period if you have other birds in your home. In fairness, your parrots should be up-to-date on their annual examinations as well. That way you can be certain that there are no contagious disease issues.
If the parrot is coming with a bird cage, perches and toys, examine his living arrangements. Make sure that the cage is large enough for the bird. Check that perches and toys are appropriate to his size and placed to give the parrot plenty of room, options, and are safe.
Decide where in the house your foster parrot is going to live or at least where he will settle in to start. Hopefully, you?e learned about the parrot? personality and challenges. If the parrot is nervous around new people and activity, then you may want to start the bird in a quieter room and move him into a more active area of the house later.
Integrating Your New Flock Member
Don? assume that your foster parrot is immediately going to be comfortable with everyone in the house or even the normal routines. If you are mindful of anything that might make your new flock member nervous and make an effort to introduce new experiences slowly, the parrot will adjust and learn quickly.
Make an effort to desensitize your foster parrot to anything that makes it nervous. If your parrot shies away from new toys, the vacuum cleaner, other pets, or anything else, work to make the experience a positive interaction. Slowly introduce the offending item or new friend at a distance, getting him closer over time as the parrot stops reacting adversely toward him.
If there are people the parrot is not comfortable with immediately, don? force the foster parrot to interact with them. Have the person give the parrot an occasional treat and only interact with the bird when he is showing signs of interest and comfort. This could be walking over to see the person without showing aggression or even vocalizing to get the person? attention. It is much easier to build a brand new positive relationship with a parrot than it is to undo a negative relationship.
Adjusting For A Happy Healthy Parrot
It isn? unusual for a parrot to happily integrate into a new household with no fear or aggression. If your new foster parrot settles in immediately, awesome! You can jump right into making sure your foster friend is willing to eat a wide variety of healthy foods, will play with new toys and interacts with people in a positive manner.
Frequently, foster parrots come from homes where they did not have a diverse diet or a variety of enrichment opportunities. Work toward getting your parrot to try to new foods and eat healthy. If you have parrots that are already eating fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, and a healthy pre-made diet, you may be in luck. Some parrots learn from just watching new flock mates eat interesting things. This is true of playing with toys as well.
If your foster parrot turns up his beak at new foods and ignores toys, then you may have to get inventive. A little bit of training can go a long way. Teach your foster parrot to step up, to target or some other simple behaviors. Once your new friend “learns to learn?he will be more open to trying out treats you give it or playing with new toys you have used in training.
A parrot that settles into a foster home quickly and learns to engage with healthy foods and his environment is well on his way to being a well-adjusted and healthy parrot in his adoptive home. Plus your foster friend will help you hone your training skills and teach you as well. It? a win-win situation for everyone!
Previous: How To Choose The Right Foster Bird