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Old 01-11-2018, 11:19 AM
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Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

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I adore parrots, and take parrot ownership EXTREMELY seriously. Sometimes I read or hear of people who've never had a parrot of any sort casually say they're going to get one. I'm not really opposed to anyone who really loves birds from getting parrots, but often I find they seem so casual about it. They seem so ignorant about parrots. Maybe they'll have a number of dogs and cats, and I wonder if they get the bird just to be an occasionally enjoyed "performing monkey" or decoration for the house. I think some people underestimate the effort, money, and attention they deserve.
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Old 01-11-2018, 11:53 AM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

Quote: Originally Posted by Cthebird View Post
I adore parrots, and take parrot ownership EXTREMELY seriously. Sometimes I read or hear of people who've never had a parrot of any sort casually say they're going to get one. I'm not really opposed to anyone who really loves birds from getting parrots, but often I find they seem so casual about it. They seem so ignorant about parrots. Maybe they'll have a number of dogs and cats, and I wonder if they get the bird just to be an occasionally enjoyed "performing monkey" or decoration for the house. I think some people underestimate the effort, money, and attention they deserve.
I think that most people grossly underestimate all of it!

I find that the best advise is to require that they provide a minimum of 10 long days at a Rescue. Starting out cleaning cages and working up from there. This process quickly weeds-out the dreamers as the reality of life with Parrots sits hard upon them. Those who get it commonly find them self chosen by a Parrot they had not even considered.

Try that route! At the very least, a rescue gets a day or two of someone helping.
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Old 01-11-2018, 12:32 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

I have absolutely discouraged parrot ownership. So many are poorly educated with what it really takes to own a bird and keep it happy. I had a coworker once talk about getting an 'easy' pet, and overheard him saying "I'll just get a bird, feed and water it once a week and it should be fine," within earshot of me....and I absolutely stopped him right then and there and told him to NOT get a bird, out of the dogs and cats I have owned birds are harder. They need specific diets and changed water and food daily, training, etc. and I think my lecture gave him enough sense to realize his mistake.

It is not for everyone. They aren't just ornaments to sit in a corner and look pretty that need to be fed every once in a while. No, no, just no.

I'd rather educate people myself then let thinking like that ruin a bird's life.

Same goes for posts that people make on here, such as younger kids (age 13) wanting a bird like a cockatoo or macaw.... with no income of their own, no knowledge of the species or what it's really like to own one, and a whole life to make of their own. Just no.
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Last edited by itzjbean; 01-11-2018 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 01-11-2018, 12:55 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

I agree with the above!

I have used every bit of [alleged] charms and wiles and persuasion to discourage or at least delay some people from parrot ownership. I think Mr. Boat's idea about urging rescue exposure is a great one.

Barring that, I have no problem showing people some of the Rickeybird's action footage. Let 'em get a load of him screaming and biting and destroying things and terrorizing the house!

I have such a pet peeve about movies (like Paulie) and television shows that present parrots as miniature feathered human beings... counselors, at that! I love Paulie. I own a copy, but... you know what I'm saying!
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Old 01-11-2018, 01:57 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

Yep totally. People see the ringneck boys play peekaboo and smother one another with kisses and get caught up in the charm. I'm pretty ruthless at telling people why they shouldn't. Same with poodles, and phd's/postgraduate work around children. All seemed like a good idea at the time! All have been well worth while and have had my full commitment but there is no denial I romanticise notions. I don't think it's a matter of being better than everyone else and able to handle it, I also don't think it's a matter of telling people they aren't good enough. What it is, however, is making people stop, think and take caution. If they move forward, good for them! But they're doing it on their own back...not on my casual recommendation.
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Old 01-11-2018, 02:25 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

Agree 100% - in fact my youngest son wanted to get a sun conure oh 17 yrs ago, just when I got back into parrot ownership. Pleaded for one. Now that he's lived with both Max a yellow wing parakeet and Salty, he is a confirmed non-bird person
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Old 01-11-2018, 02:43 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

I absolutely discourage it, have a default paragraph in my head explaining all the ways that parrots are horrible pets. My reasoning is if it's just an impulse they'll be scared away, if they truly love birds and are willing to put in the work it won't scare them away.
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Old 01-11-2018, 02:43 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

I definitely caution people about owning parrots until they have a “more realistic view” of what is actually involved. I’m happy to share my personal experiences about care, cost, hazards, and length of commitment that come with having an interesting and loving companion. If they seem serious about it, I offer to take them with me to the rescue/sanctuary that I volunteer at. I have no desire to scare anyone away from parrots - I think parrots are amazing creatures! But I want to do anything I can to help them determine if it’s a good fit for them before they jump in.
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Old 01-11-2018, 03:14 PM
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I now have a young Hahn's macaw. I used to have a Pacific Parrotlet that lived until almost 15. Before that I had a budgie.
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

Thanks so much, everyone, for sharing your experiences. I sort of figured I wasn't the only one. I like the idea of suggesting people volunteer at a bird rescue for a few days. I'll admit, though, that I'm not sure there are always one around some people's homes.

I have bipolar disorder, so hang around bipolar disorder online support groups. Some member was writing about her manic purchases on Amazon and other intended purchases. She put "reserved a parrot" in the same paragraph as crap like rhinestone tiara and lawnmower, so I just had to act. I'll admit that I wrote quite a post in response. I tried to keep it pleasant, but at the same time had to really include some very important realities. I also mentioned how people don't realize how smart and sensitive parrots can be. Just as people with bipolar disorder get lonely, depressed and distressed, so can parrots. I know from my past even being depressed long-term, it affected my second parrot to a degree. I feel bad about that, but did treasure his love and company to an extreme, and with my husband's help we did a pretty good job. I'm well now. My husband and I only adopted our Hahn's macaw after going through a reasonable grieving process for my last parrot, and knowing we were really ready.

I am at home all day and spend most of my day in the same room as my parrot. I know the best parrot parents can't always do that, but it scares me to think that people would spend all their home time with the dog and only "visit" the parrot for 30 to 60 mins per day at the most. OMG, or less.
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:17 PM
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Re: Have you ever found yourself discouraging parrot ownership?

As someone who has read all the don't get a parrot info, and got a parrot anyway, I can say that some of the time, your discouragement will fall on deaf ears.

However, I have also joined the ranks. Everyone asks me how it's like owning a bird, and I tell them it sucks, and that they should adopt a dog or cat. Whether or not it works is unclear but the more wary people are the better in my opinion.
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