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Bitsy is 2 1/2. I've had him since he was weaned. He's developed a new behavior that is VERY hard for me to deal with. After our time together (he's out of his cage; rides on my shoulder and we just hang out together and he most usually has a snack), when it's time for him to return to his cage, he's started biting/pecking my neck really hard. Clearly he doesn't want to go back to his cage - he'd rather remain out. That's not an option, because we also have a dog who needs time out with us. I always have fresh seed or a snack (mash) waiting for him in his cage. I've stopped saying the word "cage" - he knows it. I've tried varying the path I walk taking him back to his cage. Nothing is helping - he's biting me about every time. I always say "no, Bitsy!" and do go ahead and return him to his cage. Just for further information, he has time out with us several times a day. This can't continue! Any helpful suggestions?
 

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Can you place him on your finger before walking him back to the cage? That way he wont be biting your neck.
 

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Neither of my birds like returning to their cage. Sometimes I have a treat in my hand that they follow in - this sometimes works. But, I always tickle/scritch them once they are perched in their cage. And, I stay with them in the room for some time after placing them in. This is helping take the unpleasantness of returning to a cage. It's ensuring that they don't associate or think of being placed in the cage as abandonment or loneliness.
 

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Sometimes my bird does not want to get off of my hand to go into the cage...he doesn't bite he just doesn't step off my hand. I give him a couple of extra kisses and strokes and then tell him it is time to go home and he steps off. I put him on his fav perch near a treat dish and it works ( so far knock on wood ) for me.
 

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Perching on the shoulder is a privilege, not a right, for any bird. If he doesn't cooperate with getting off, and especially if he bites, then I thnk you have to restrict his shoulder access for now. He must learn that the shoulder spot is not just a given, it requires manners. He needs to learn the step up from any location, and stick training wouldn't be a bad idea. I think you'll get your sweet bird back, once he learns he simply isn't allowed to own your shoulder/neck. He is there only because you have allowed him to be there for a time you determine.

You might try wearing a button front shirt over whatever you're wearing, and at the least sign of resistance (before the biting if possible!), just remove the shirt, bird and all. It's best to avoid the biting, for more than the discomfort - the more he bites, the more he learns to bite to communicate, and you don't want that.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you so much for responding to my query. All of the ideas are helpful. We'll need to practice the step up command - guess now that I think of it, we've gotten a little lax about that. Also, we're in the process of moving and as I think about it, just the stress may be getting to Bitsy too. I have tried putting him on a stick to take him back to his cage - and that seems to help. Also, I've started not carrying his snack in there at the same time I take him - so that doesn't signal that our time together is over. I thank you so much for all suggestions, and any more from other folks would be helpful!
 

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I put a rope perch in a U shape on the top door of both birds' cages. Sadie, when she does not want to go back will hold on to my finger with a death grip that can not be broken. I have a little more success getting her to go down on the door perch then closing the door. Wheeeee! we are going for a ride. So far this trick has worked out.

Healey is just the opposite. He always wants to go back to his cage but is just getting his flight feathers in so he is still clumsy and not in control yet. The perch gives him a clear target to aim for and so far he he is batting 100. Lol, poor little guy, when he is out of his cage and becomes startled, he takes off for destinations unknown and the landings are not always so smooth.
 

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My boy Cloud is one of those p'lets that likes to show me what he thinks by biting. I've just learned when I can hold him bare handed and when I need to put a towel over my hand. If training doesn't work, you may just have to wrap your hand up and make him step onto it before approaching the cage.

Good luck!
 

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I agree with Reta -- sitting on my shoulder is a privilege, NOT a right. Kiwi and Angelina are very good when they sit on my shoulder, but Kermit (my male) once in a while will all of a sudden give me a good nip on my neck. He is taken off my shoulder IMMEDIATELY and placed on a playstand or elsewhere.

This drives him CRAZY!! He keeps trying to fly back to my shoulder, again and again, and I raise my hand to keep him off. After about five minutes of this, I let him back on my shoulder and he's a very good boy then. I don't think he's mad at me when he does it, I think he's trying to get my attention, since I have 3 P'lets. I let him know firmly that this does NOT work!

As for going back to their cages, they don't seem to mind either way. They like to be in and they also love being out, so at this point (fingers crossed) this is not a problem for me. Maybe others will have some suggestions.

Good luck and keep us posted on how things are going.
 

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Py does NOT like fingers...but his dry washcloth is OK...I wrap him up and call him Burrito Bird and he's OK in my hands then, with scritches and whispers.
Cosmo steps up, as he always has, right on my finger on request. No fears and is very used to it. That being said, both of them can nip when they want to...and silently I put them right back in the cage. Py knows and tries to get back out before the door closes...Cosmo throws one of his little fits...but the biting is now next to never - they know the rules!!
 

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My Kiwi hates going back in the cage. Before, she used to just fly away when I get close to the cage with her on my finger. Now i play peekaboo with her with a fuzzy towel/blanket, (say Peekaboo, put the blanket close to her), wrap her in it and give her lots of scratches and kisses. Then I put her and the blanket in the cage, close the door. I then remove the blanket when she is on her perch after I say "On the perch", then she gets a millet or *popcorn*

If I don't use the blanket, I will never get her in the cage. She's too smart and just flies away and bites when I try to get her to step up cuz she knows she's going back in.
 
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