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Old 03-17-2017, 07:34 PM
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Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

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Hi guys, some of you may have read some of my other posts but I adopted my umbrella cockatoo about 1 month ago and she is doing really great for the most part, she doesn't mind when I leave and doesn't screech anymore. She is just so mellow and all she likes to do is either sit in her perch and eat her big shelled walnuts or chew on stuff under her blanket on my bed. Is her mellow behavior possibly due to the fact that she is somewhere in her 40s? Do these birds mellow out as they age? Or should I be worried that she is sick?? She never really seems to get too excited about anything and seems to lack a lot of energy, I try to get her to play but her energy levels seem to be decreasing. She seems to like her very mellow quiet environment that I have her in and when I take her out of my room she gets very bad anxiety and starts to shake. She also had anxiety around other people such as my dad and boyfriend and if they come in my room she will charge at them, my boyfriend tries to spend time with her every dsy but even if she's in her cage and he's in the room she gets really anxious and starts shaking. Any advice on what could be done about her relationships with other family memebers and also if this behavior of hers is normal for an older cockatoo??


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Old 03-17-2017, 10:40 PM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

Has she been to the vet and had a full work-up of blood and droppings? If so, anything unusual?

Do you know what her life was like prior to living with you?

My U2 is very young, just 7 months so my actual experience is very limited. I ask the questions above because from reading everything I could get my hands on before deciding to get a U2 I found that these two things have a lot of bearing on the personality of the bird.
There's a lot of experience here so hopefully someone knowledgeable will respond soon.
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Old 03-18-2017, 05:56 AM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

It's worth bearing in mind a month is still quite a short period of time for a mature too to adjust to a new environment - it could be a good while longer before she's fully comfortable. A quiet bird is a lot less noticeable to predators than one that is constantly making a show of itself, so their natural instinct when they're not sure of their surroundings is to keep it down a notch and keep a close eye out for anything new that could be a threat. A vet visit is always a good idea if you have any health concerns, but my guess is she'll relax and come further out of her shell over time.

Then you get the 'It's obviously safe here... now, I wonder who's in charge?' phase!
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Old 03-18-2017, 06:55 AM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

Quote: Originally Posted by emyoung858 View Post
Hi guys, some of you may have read some of my other posts but I adopted my umbrella cockatoo about 1 month ago and she is doing really great for the most part, she doesn't mind when I leave and doesn't screech anymore. She is just so mellow and all she likes to do is either sit in her perch and eat her big shelled walnuts or chew on stuff under her blanket on my bed. Is her mellow behavior possibly due to the fact that she is somewhere in her 40s? Do these birds mellow out as they age? Or should I be worried that she is sick?? She never really seems to get too excited about anything and seems to lack a lot of energy, I try to get her to play but her energy levels seem to be decreasing. She seems to like her very mellow quiet environment that I have her in and when I take her out of my room she gets very bad anxiety and starts to shake. She also had anxiety around other people such as my dad and boyfriend and if they come in my room she will charge at them, my boyfriend tries to spend time with her every dsy but even if she's in her cage and he's in the room she gets really anxious and starts shaking. Any advice on what could be done about her relationships with other family memebers and also if this behavior of hers is normal for an older cockatoo??
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Hello and thank you for taking an older parrot especially a 'too into your heart and your home.

The decreasing energy levels concern me and if she has not had an overall health check recently then it would be wise to know how she is? I now realise that my 'too who was so well behaved, not very active, no bother, was in fact covering a major illness, underneath another. It has taken a while to manifest.

Aged 40 is there anything that needs attention? The other thing is diet, what are you feeding her? Go easy on the nuts, if she eats these readily there is a chance that the good stuff is getting bypassed because she is not hungry?

Try taking it slow, lots of reassurance and play real estate agent with her, take her on little trips round the house, tell her what the room is, lots of talking to her, even ask her is she likes the curtains LOL? If we do any changes in the house I take Plum for a nosey round to get reacquainted, he ooh and ahs at it usually. The charging, she is protecting you that's all. Looks like you have developed a strong bond with her quickly.
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Old 03-18-2017, 09:55 AM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

I've met very old 'toos who are as spry as a hatchling. In fact my 20 year old was more active than my 7 year old. I think if you notice a decrease in energy level you should be somewhat concerned for sickness. Since she recently came to your home, her immune system may be weaker from the stress. My 'too was somewhat chill when she arrived but then I found out she was sick. It may be part antibiotics and part familiarity but my 'too is a lot more cheeky and active now a month later.

If you can, try getting a scale with the traingular perch thing and regularly monitor your birds weight. Mine dropped a few gram since she came to my house which was also a good sign of sickness or stress

As for helping with the outside anxiety thing, my best advice is take it slow and stepwise. Like maybe try to just get her to your doorway, open your door, wait for 5 seconds calmly, then praise/treat her with a small treat and return her to her safe area. Then next time take a step, then 5, then 10...also do you have a play area for her outside your room? It may also help if she has some sort of outside safe station. My bird has her sleep cage then two outside play gyms she feels comfortable hanging around
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Old 03-18-2017, 11:50 AM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

They do not necessarily become sluggish with age. My two wild-caught Goffins are in their 40s and remain just as active as their 3 hand-fed offspring. Perhaps even more! The female has some signs of arthritis in her feet, but has no difficulty functioning. They are also far more skilled flyers.
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Old 03-19-2017, 12:34 PM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

My dilemma right now is just her crazy aggression, I can't even let her out of her cage when my boyfriend is already or she will try to violently attack him, it really scares us but we don't let her know that we are scared, yesterday I tried to work with her by allowing her to come out of her cage but if she charged after him I would wrap her up in a towel and put her back in her cage until she cooled down and then try again, it didn't seem to work and she still flips out whenever he's near her, I don't know what to do to get her to realize that he is not a threat or for her to realize that she is not in control of our house. I hate having to leave her in her cage, she seems so sad but I just don't know what to do in terms of discipline, she would never hurt me and she trusts me, but I can't handle the stress of her not being able to be in the same room as my boyfriend, we all live together so this situation is becoming worse, daily


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Old 03-19-2017, 12:53 PM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

Your too may have been teated badly by a male sometime in her past. The BF should just take it easy maybe start by him just sitting quietly in the door way for a few days, maybe a week, and going just that little bit closer each day after that. She has to know he is not a threat. I would avoid toweling her , that is never pleasasnt for a parrot.
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Old 03-19-2017, 02:00 PM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

Quote: Originally Posted by wrench13 View Post
Your too may have been teated badly by a male sometime in her past. The BF should just take it easy maybe start by him just sitting quietly in the door way for a few days, maybe a week, and going just that little bit closer each day after that. She has to know he is not a threat. I would avoid toweling her , that is never pleasasnt for a parrot.


See I figured she might have been abused but her previous owner was a young male, they even look similar and her previous family said she was not like this at all, ever... should I just keep her in her cage when she's around him?? Someone else suggested that she's protecting me so I am getting really confused and frustrated because this is very scary behavior for me,


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Old 03-19-2017, 02:14 PM
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Re: Is it normal for older toos' to be this mellow

Could be both so yes keep her in her cage for now.

If she has been abused by a male similar looking to your BF it is going to be a long haul which will require both time and patience.

Ask your BF to give her cage a wide berth for now, walk the long way round. He should still speak to her, say hello etc. It is only by her observing him over time that any progress will be made if and when she feels fit. She will not like any shows of affection between you two so in an effort not to annoy her anymore keep this for out of sight. You can also speak to her if she is agitated with him, tell her it is OK, it's only ****. Ask your BF not to make direct eye contact with her, look down rather than at.

I guess the worse her past has been will make her want to cling to you without sharing all the more. She clearly feels safe and loved with you. Time will tell if it is just your BF or all males. Just you and her time will be needed even more every day. It's not really about behaviour at the moment but fear and trust with her. Attack or be attacked.

Make her cage a really good and happy place for her. Loads of toys, foragers, wood to chew, even FP musical toys for kids, how about having a go at making one of Allee's fleece swings? Aiming for something in her cage that is a comforter to go to.
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