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Old 04-15-2014, 05:17 PM
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What to do when jealousy strikes?

And by strikes, I mean literally strikes. Youwch! This morning I took Avery out of her cage and placed her on my shoulder so I could walk around. We were loving each other, I was whispering into her feathers and she was oh-so-pleased, and she was preening my face. I then sat down on my bed to talk with my boyfriend, and for the 10 seconds I was facing away from Avery, she decided I was paying too much attention to him and too little attention to her.

Or that's what I've concluded. I wrote down what happened in my journal and tried to analyse it awhile after it happened... she was perfectly fine, was showing no aggression, and while she is going through another molt she has never been that aggressive before. She bit my nose so hard it bled and I honestly feel like I gained a new piercing !

Mind you, I am in no way angry with her, I'm just at a loss what to do when that happens. I do ignore the bite and reward good behaviour, but I really don't know how to behave when that happens. It hurt, so I said "ow!", told Avery "No!" in a decently stern voice, grabbed her and put her in her cage for 5 minutes. I took her out after and then "ostracized" her for a bit... ate some lunch and placed her down with my back to her for the 15 or so minutes I was eating, and she seems to understand that I don't appreciate it. But what else can I do, and more importantly, how can I avoid that? I've revoked her shoulder privileges for a week or so, depending on her behaviour... but I would really appreciate some more suggestions
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Old 04-15-2014, 05:47 PM
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Re: What to do when jealousy strikes?

My opinion only, that was too much 'punishment'... the immediate response was the only punishment I would have done.

I would not allow her onto the shoulder until you have regained total trust in her. Moving forward, just behave as nothing happened, just do not let her on the shoulder until you work with her more and are assured that the boyfriend is the trigger. That does happen tho, with so many birds, she bonds to you and he becomes a threat. Be careful with your boyfriend, an attack on him might be the next thing to happen if she is jealous.
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Old 04-15-2014, 07:59 PM
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Re: What to do when jealousy strikes?

See, that's the funny thing - she definitely accepts my boyfriend. We make sure to both train her and spend individual time with her, so she'd never go out of her way to deliberately attack him if it took too much effort. She'll get protective over me if he gets close when she's on my shoulder, but only then, so we avoid close contact if she's there, but generally she loves cuddling with him too.

I don't really believe in punishment per se, but just removing her so I don't end up getting hurt again. I was basically trying to tell her that getting nippy with me results in her not being able to be close to me, and I don't want her cage to be her "punishment" zone, it's her home and her safe place so I opted to take her out and thought that putting her in a cage for me being displeased might create later negative associations with it. Hence eating with my back to her.

But thanks for the response! We've been continuing like nothing has happened, and I'm not scared to put her near my face, we've been having snuggle time together all day after about a 30 minute cool down between us with no biting (thankfully!). Perhaps I'm just oblivious or naive when it comes to animal love, but I definitely can't hold a grudge against her for her behaviour when it's simply natural. Especially since I'll probably have worse to deal with in a year when she goes through hormones !

Any other suggestions or responses are also welcome, I appreciate all advice from this forum and any new insights are great! Thanks
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Old 04-15-2014, 09:57 PM
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Re: What to do when jealousy strikes?

Was anything else different? Reading more that you share it may have been something in the moment.... hair different than normal? New jewelry? Move quick and she was startled? Shiny or metallic makeup?

I defintely agree her cage should not be punishment especially if she is younger. If you need to put her 'away' for punishment think about having a carrier handy
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Old 04-15-2014, 10:51 PM
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Re: What to do when jealousy strikes?

Maybe it was my new glasses? I just recently bought new ones and they have a black frame versus a brown frame. I know simple things can set them off, but she's been fine with them ever since I've worn them and hasn't made any fuss. She's generally not opposed to change, but maybe she decided I looked better in the others?

And yeah. I was wondering what to do, really. I think a carrier might work, but then I don't want her to be afraid of one when she needs to be in it for vet visits/quick travel... I had also read putting them on the ground is an option, which I've tried previously, but she kind of just flies back to me. So I lose, hahaha!

Oh well. I'm just going to have to learn day by day with this. She does respond to me being all "grrr" and making an upset face with her or using a stern voice. I find if I nicely ask, she kind of looks at me like I've got a head filled with bricks and continues to attack . I was just surprised because she's never used displacement biting in regards to jealousy before, she generally just gets over it. I guess this time around she decided that her highness deserved more attention than my lowlier-than-thou boyfriend, hahaha! Birds will be birds I suppose

Thanks for your help, Jen!
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