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Old 02-27-2020, 04:58 AM
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Re: A more compassionate approach to Pet owners from the "Non West"

Cardinal, I couldn't agree with you more!

Time and again, I've seen people from South East Asia driven away from our forums, simply because they came to inform themselves and were then harshly judged because of what they didn't know or what they couldn't buy. Once and for all, I wish members would realise that certain things are categorically *not* available everywhere in the world! That would include CAVs, pelleted food, decent seed mixes, enrichment toys (or, sometimes, even *any* toys) and large cages.

If a person lives in a remote part of SE Asia (where the Internet might be easily available, but retail shops are not), then it's entirely possible that he sees a parrot as a pleasant pet animal which can be easily discarded if problems arise or if it gets ill. Since ringneck species are native to the area, it's not unreasonable to expect a well-meaning person to think he's doing the bird a favour by letting it fly with its own species. It's entirely possible that he wouldn't dream of a parrot being unable to feed itself or find water. After all, the millions of wild ones do!

Flaming a person for coming here and asking questions is not the best outcome for the parrots. Instead, they are condemned to the well-meaning but erroneous thinking of the owners, who are probably good people (that's why they're anxious to ask for help in the first place).

I've seen photos of Alexandrines in Indian markets crammed into cages like sardines, with their poor faces squished against the wire and their wings bent at impossible angles. I've seen macaws chained to metal perches by a foot-long chain. What if a cat lunged? Or a child? The bird has no recourse but to break a limb or perish! This is ignorance, but it's not always malice. The best solution for ignorance is patient education. I don't know a solution for malice. If I did, I'd be a very happy woman!

Finally, I'd like to say that belting a person with a page-long slab of text is not always effective either. Certainly, the text might contain all the info the person needs to keep a healthy, happy bird, but what if he can only just read very basic English? Like: 'Hello, I do not know what my parrot should eat' or 'Please help me fix my sick bird'. It's so easy to get carried away with one's own hard-gleaned knowledge and spew it at the poster, only to have him leave, never to return. I know I've done it myself! (I'm notoriously verbose, despite my best efforts to stop it).

Perhaps a quick fix might be to rewrite some of the most important stickies in very simple English that could be understood by an ESL person (English as a Second Language)? Pictures of cages suitable for various species would be helpful (cages are *not* easy to come by in SE Asia and when they are, they're usually just big enough for a budgie). Pictures of food and seed mixes might be helpful as well. Pictures of home-made toys and feeders and drinking stations. The absence of CAVs is a problem, but perhaps a register of vets and/or university departments where help might be sought could be useful?

OK. I've done it again. Sorry for the length. I'm pretty passionate about this, as I have a feeling a considerable number of people have missed out completely on getting help from our site through misunderstanding. Thank you, Cardinal, for bringing it up again!

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