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Old 06-03-2019, 11:26 AM
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Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Hello Friends. Thank you for the advice from last month, I followed it and so did my fiance. It seemed that Ryu and I were back to getting on our bond when Zane (my fiance) backed off of petting Ryu on the 'no zone' and giving the parrot excessive treats.

We were doing really well, no bites for several weeks. I even started to allow Ryu back on my shoulder a bit. Two weeks ago, Zane and I went out of town for our babymoon and upon my return, Ryu seemed happy to see me. We had the travel cage which is also the cage parrot sleeps in usually with us at my moms. And I was even able to approach the cage with no aggression. Upon returning home, the cage aggression began again with the small cage.

I was observing body language and just giving the bird space and using the wood perch to remove him/her in the am to put in the larger cage. Then yesterday, I was bit again... hard. Out of nowhere the first time while we were hanging out and I turned my head to look over at the parrot and was bit on the lip. I calmly returned Ryu to the cage for a time out.

Later in the day, I had the bird again and Zane came around and asked if he could handle Ryu so I allowed it. I observed Ryu brushing his/her face along Zane's facial hair and neck hairs as well as looking like it was doing other preening self behaviors like standing on one foot and fluffing the feathers with the other foot on its neck area.

I took a shower and by that time, it was bed time for Ryu so I took the bird from Zane and headed towards the bedroom where the sleeping cage is... and CHOMP, right on my cheek.

I am at a total loss as to what to so at this point. Please help
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Old 06-03-2019, 12:33 PM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Awe, I'm sorry you're going through this, but it's not at all uncommon with any species of parrot, but with Green Cheeks they do tend to be a bit more "nippy" than others, especially if they're hormonal...Just keep in-mind that you're not alone in what you're going through, and things will again get better...

It says that Ryu is 2 years-old, so he's already gone through puberty and is sexually-mature...So like you stated, you used to pet him in areas other than his head, face, neck, and under his chin, any if you do that anywhere else on his body it does tend to cause them to become extremely hormonal...There are a lot of other things that are "Triggers" for hormonal-behavior, which I'm sure you know already and have hopefully stopped doing, or removed from his cage if he had them, such as any Beds, Nests, Tents, "Happy/Snuggle Huts", Hammocks, blankets, towels, etc., basically anything that creates a small, dark place that he can get into or underneath. (I just saw a new YouTube video of a Sun Conure who was fine one minute and died suddenly the next minute, literally, they walked out of the room for 30 minutes and when they came back he was lying dead in the bottom of his cage; they showed his cage and he had 2 green "Happy/Snuggle Huts" inside, one in the bottom and one in the top, so no-doubt he died of a bowel-obstruction from him picking at and ingesting the material. So sad and so preventable, this Sun Conure was only 3 years-old)...So assuming that you already went through removing all of the other hormonal triggers inside of his cage, as well as not letting him get underneath or inside of anything while he's out of cage in the house, then we have to take a look at what else went on or changed when he started biting again...Not everything is caused by hormones, and though yes, your bird becoming hormonal does regularly cause them to become extremely frustrated when they realize that they cannot do anything about their hormones (they can't mate with you), this causes them to bite out of frustration...But there are plenty of other things that will cause the same types of behaviors besides hormones...

***You guys went away (I don't know for how long) and I'm assuming you left Ryu with someone to watch him/care for him, you mentioned your mom..People leaving their pet parrots behind for more than a normal time-period for them to be gone (usually the longest time pet parrots are left alone without seeing their people/person is while they're at work during the day, so any amount of time longer than that can cause behavioral issues due to anger, frustration, boredom, etc.) is probably the 2nd most-common cause of your pet parrots suddenly becoming aggressive with you and biting you...Again, I don't know how long you were gone for or where/with whom you left Ryu, but if his behavior suddenly changed back to being aggressive with you again RIGHT AFTER you came back home, then you can pretty much say that your trip, you being gone for longer than normal, and him being watched by someone other than you (doesn't matter if he has met the person before or is fine with them when they are around him in your home or whenever you're also with them), as well as if you took him out of his home and he was kept at someone else's home while you were gone are the reasons why he's not happy with you right now...And this is very common.

Parrots are not at all like dogs or cats, or any other types of pets besides maybe Primates like Monkeys and Lemurs when it comes to their level of intelligence, their memory (which is better than ours, both short-term and long-term), and their need to always be busy with a "job" to do so they don't become bored. All of these factors make it extremely difficult for parrot-owners to go on vacations, even just a weekend-trip or just overnight for one night can anger your parrot and cause them to be aggressive with you, bite you, etc. Usually things will normalize after you're back for a couple of weeks, once they again feel secure that you're not going to leave them behind with someone else again any time soon...However, you stated that you went out of town just 2 weeks ago (again, I don't know how long you were gone), and right now Ryu is still very mad at you for leaving him, and most of all he's feeling insecure about whether or not you're going to leave him again. That's probably most of what is going on with his behavior, and IT WILL stop again, but in the meantime you just need to try to spend as much time as you can with him, and make things extra-special for him. You need to make him feel like you love him and you're not going anywhere again, lots of one-on-one time with him, out-of-cage time with him, lots and lots of treats for him (given to him by BOTH OF YOU), and you just need to pick-up where you left-off before you left, when things were improving with your relationship with Ryu...This will pass soon, I promise it will. It's very common and this kind of behavior is just what you deal with when you have a parrot. They are just so intelligent, and when you combine that with the fact that they are very social "Flock-Animals" who become very closely-bonded with their person/people, it's very much like leaving your young 3-4 year-old human child behind with someone else to watch them. They don't understand where you went, why you left them behind, they didn't know if you were ever coming back to them again, and now he doesn't know whether or not you're going to do it again and he's worried about it...Just give him time to realize you're not going anwhere, and make sure you spoil him rotten for the next couple of days and you make him know how much you love him...Things will be fine.

***Also, just an FYI, if you're having a human baby (I think that's what you meant, lol, if not then I apologize), then don't be surprised if Ryu goes through the same kind of thing once you bring the baby home and most of your time and affection is focused on the baby instead of him. Again, this is very, very common, and you just have to do your best to put aside special time each day for Ryu even though you have a new baby to care for...It's tough and it's tiring, but it's very important that they feel like you love them just as much as you do your human-baby/kids, and to eliminate any jealousy of the baby...
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Old 06-03-2019, 01:44 PM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Quote: Originally Posted by EllenD View Post

It says that Ryu is 2 years-old, so he's already gone through puberty and is sexually-mature...So like you stated, you used to pet him in areas other than his head, face, neck, and under his chin, any if you do that anywhere else on his body it does tend to cause them to become extremely hormonal...There are a lot of other things that are "Triggers" for hormonal-behavior, which I'm sure you know already and have hopefully stopped doing,
Not everything is caused by hormones, and though yes, your bird becoming hormonal does regularly cause them to become extremely frustrated when they realize that they cannot do anything about their hormones (they can't mate with you), this causes them to bite out of frustration...But there are plenty of other things that will cause the same types of behaviors besides hormones...

***You guys went away (I don't know for how long) and I'm assuming you left Ryu with someone to watch him/care for him, you mentioned your mom..People leaving their pet parrots behind for more than a normal time-period for them to be gone (usually the longest time pet parrots are left alone without seeing their people/person is while they're at work during the day, so any amount of time longer than that can cause behavioral issues due to anger, frustration, boredom, etc.) is probably the 2nd most-common cause of your pet parrots suddenly becoming aggressive with you and biting you...Again, I don't know how long you were gone for or where/with whom you left Ryu, but if his behavior suddenly changed back to being aggressive with you again RIGHT AFTER you came back home, then you can pretty much say that your trip, you being gone for longer than normal, and him being watched by someone other than you (doesn't matter if he has met the person before or is fine with them when they are around him in your home or whenever you're also with them), as well as if you took him out of his home and he was kept at someone else's home while you were gone are the reasons why he's not happy with you right now...And this is very common.

Parrots are not at all like dogs or cats, or any other types of pets besides maybe Primates like Monkeys and Lemurs when it comes to their level of intelligence, their memory (which is better than ours, both short-term and long-term), and their need to always be busy with a "job" to do so they don't become bored. All of these factors make it extremely difficult for parrot-owners to go on vacations, even just a weekend-trip or just overnight for one night can anger your parrot and cause them to be aggressive with you, bite you, etc. Usually things will normalize after you're back for a couple of weeks, once they again feel secure that you're not going to leave them behind with someone else again any time soon...However, you stated that you went out of town just 2 weeks ago (again, I don't know how long you were gone), and right now Ryu is still very mad at you for leaving him, and most of all he's feeling insecure about whether or not you're going to leave him again. That's probably most of what is going on with his behavior, and IT WILL stop again, but in the meantime you just need to try to spend as much time as you can with him, and make things extra-special for him. You need to make him feel like you love him and you're not going anywhere again, lots of one-on-one time with him, out-of-cage time with him, lots and lots of treats for him (given to him by BOTH OF YOU), and you just need to pick-up where you left-off before you left, when things were improving with your relationship with Ryu...This will pass soon, I promise it will. It's very common and this kind of behavior is just what you deal with when you have a parrot. They are just so intelligent, and when you combine that with the fact that they are very social "Flock-Animals" who become very closely-bonded with their person/people, it's very much like leaving your young 3-4 year-old human child behind with someone else to watch them. They don't understand where you went, why you left them behind, they didn't know if you were ever coming back to them again, and now he doesn't know whether or not you're going to do it again and he's worried about it...Just give him time to realize you're not going anwhere, and make sure you spoil him rotten for the next couple of days and you make him know how much you love him...Things will be fine.

***Also, just an FYI, if you're having a human baby (I think that's what you meant, lol, if not then I apologize), then don't be surprised if Ryu goes through the same kind of thing once you bring the baby home and most of your time and affection is focused on the baby instead of him. Again, this is very, very common, and you just have to do your best to put aside special time each day for Ryu even though you have a new baby to care for...It's tough and it's tiring, but it's very important that they feel like you love them just as much as you do your human-baby/kids, and to eliminate any jealousy of the baby...

Ellen,
Thanks so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful response.
let me clarify a couple things and then maybe you will have more information for me (which I found super useful already)

1. Yes, I have removed the nesting tent I made. Used to have a flat wood perch covered by fleece above to mimic a dark, hut which Ry loved but I removed once I was told to by this forum

2. Ryu is closer to 6 years old now. Still not sure of the gender

3. We were gone for a whole week and Ryu was with my mother and she did not allow him out of the cage.

4. Upon my immediate return, I was able to take her out, have her on my shoulder, in the shower etc without any bites.

5. The biting behavior only started again once we were back in our apartment (we spend a couple days in between our babymoon at my moms) and seemed to really come out of nowhere yesterday.

I am confused by one thing. What (if anything) is Zane's role in this ? As I mentioned earlier, from the time he moved in with us in December, Ryu has been fond of him. He's never once gotten a bite and he even sticks his hand in the cage to remove Ryu from sleeping cage to transport to day cage !

Someone told me last month after I'd received blood drawing bites that if Zane was to remove his attention, that Ryu might come back to me. So i told Zane to not give the parrot attention and allow me to give her treats/ out of cage time etc. A few weeks of that, I was able to handle the parrot again without getting a strong bite. But since mid May, Zane has been gradually integrating again with Ryu and last night, he let him on his shoulder and the above behaviors were observed right before I took Ryu on my shoulder and went to the put her to bed and was bit on the face while walking that path.

I have gotten both opinions - That Ryu has picked Zane as a mate and I am now getting bitten bc I am a threat. AND that Ryu is jealous of Zane and biting me ?

Did I allow him on my shoulder too soon ? What does the grooming of Zane's facial hair and Ryu rubbing her face on his face mean ? Should we both stop with any shoulder time until mating season is over ?

Thank you for all your help. My vet apparently sucks.
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Old 06-03-2019, 01:55 PM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Also, I just looked up a Youtube video on GCC "mating behavior" and Ryu was DEFINITELY doing 5 of the 8 behaviors while ON Zane's shoulder last night !

Is it possible that the parrot bit me because I removed her from doing the rubbing etc...
She motioned to come to me (leaning forward and flapping feathers) so I picked her up, thinking she wanted to go to her sleep cage. Then I was bit
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Old 06-03-2019, 05:24 PM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

I find Remi to be a bit unpredictable at times. Bitey is definitely his characteristic. Compared to the cockatiels I used to have, Remi is very moody.
But, it's something we are working on every day. Watching the triggers and keeping a good routine and calm environment.
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:40 AM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Hun your bird has chosen Zane and this is why he is grooming him. You got chomped because you took him away from his chosen one. Sorry!


Any hopes of reversing this then Zane will have to really back off to give you a chance to change things. There of course is no guarantee that it will stay or change straight back. It can work as Zane as the chosen one and you No 2, it will take work. I think you possibly need to have a look for some training sites. Sally Blanchard is one although there are others but she is a good starting point.
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Old 06-04-2019, 05:30 AM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

hello, i understand what you are going through. i got a caique many years ago she was about 5 yrs old and had many different homes. she did not like women. i wanted her as my pet my hubby did not bother with her, but she chose him, i did everything with her and it was me she bit, never once my hubby. so hubby had nothing to do with her never holding her or sitting with her, eventually she became my bird and was a really great little bird, but it did take a long time for her to bond with me.
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:35 AM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

I hope you guys are able to patch things up with Ryu. As an aside, I am sometimes gone for 2-3 weeks at a time overseas, and frequently away for weekends out of state with my band. I always make a point to tell Salty I will be gone for XXX days, using hand and fingers to show him how many. Doing that for a few days before I leave. By doing that he a) knows I am going but will be back, and b) gives his lil birdy brain an idea of how long. If I neglect to to this , the pissed off stage can last 5 days to a week. If I do tell him, it's a day, and some times he is fine right away. It wont hurt to do it, and many people will do this when an extended absence is contemplated, especially if it is more that just once.
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Old 06-04-2019, 08:33 AM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

So much good advice here! I would say also to avoid dangerous bites on the face/ears not to allow Ryu on your shoulder for a good length of time, months not days or weeks, to make sure behaviour is on point. Also, don't walk around with Ryu on your shoulder. If you allow Ryu back on your shoulder, be careful on the setting. Preferably seated, not moving, without any competition for attention (ie. the chosen mate nearby). Parrots bite and a bite on the face can result in unpleasant injuries.
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Old 06-04-2019, 01:08 PM
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Re: Still Biting Me, I am so sad.

Thank you everyone for the feedback . I will look into the training options and speak with Zane about backing off again. I just feel bad because more than I want my bird back, I want Ryu to be happy and if she / he has "chosen" Zane, then maybe I should just back off and allow the parrot to have time with whomever she chooses rather than me trying to force our relationship back to what it was before Zane entered our lives.
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