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Old 06-25-2020, 04:46 PM
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Exclamation HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

Hello to anyone who's reading this,

I'm a sophomore in high school and I'm planing to get a feathered friend, but I'm not so sure I'm ready for it. I've owned pet budgies in the past but I couldn't keep them for long because of my living conditions. But, I am knowledgeable and serious about the consequences of owning a bird, I've done my research, and I had all of the proper supplies to care for my birds in the past. But my problem is that I want to go to college and still have a companion to keep me on my toes. I'm currently doing lots of research on different colleges I may want to go to (in or out of state). I'm afraid of not being able to keep up with my bird again and make them feel miserable because of my mistakes.

This time I'm thinking about getting a Severe macaw, Hahns macaw, or an African Grey. If anyone has any advice on what I should do, please respond!
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Old 06-25-2020, 05:48 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

Hello and welcome!

The answer is your instinct is right: this isn’t the right time for you to own a parrot. Parrots aren’t great communal living animals. You’re going to have enough going on with school and social activities to keep you on your toes without having something as high maintenance as a parrot to have to stress about.

The. You have to worry about where you’ll live after closing. Moving with a bird isn’t easy, and you may be forced to live in a place that won’t accept birds.

People best suited to parrot ownership are those who are those who are settled down into regular jobs and have their own home. Home ownership isn’t requisite, but roommates, thin/poorly soundproofed walls, and apartment pet policies make apartments a challenging location to keep parrots.
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Old 06-25-2020, 06:26 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE wait until you are entirely done with high school and college and have a solid job with a place to live.
If you wouldn't have a child right now, don't get a bird...too expensive and too many unknowns...frankly, you have to be in it for the long-haul and at this juncture in your life, you can't make that promise to another living thing.

It's not fair to the bird, and they live a VERY long time, so there is no reason for you not to wait (other than your own desires--which will harm the bird if you are not ready)
They get very attached...they need more time than you know you will have...they may or may not like your parents....they probably can't live in a dorm(and apartments are questionable, as well as dangerous due to fumes in many cases)...they need a HUGE cage. I respect your asking, and I very much hope that you will wait.

Last edited by noodles123; 06-25-2020 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 06-25-2020, 07:05 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

Excellent advise provided above!!!

Not sure if you are aware that the majority of College Freshmen barely make it too Thanksgiving before they washout. Those that choose the easy, feel good majors may make it to graduation, but find that there is either NO jobs available in that field of study or what is pays less than Micky-D's and they are several hundred thousands of dollars in debt.

If you are going to go to College, at least choose a profession that has a market need and pays enough to afford to live someplace other than your parent's house. This commonly means something that involves high end Math, Science, and other hard stuff that demands study, study and more study. Also, look at a double Major! Since you will have to take additional course that result in a Minor, why not take a couple more 'meaning full courses' and get another major.

If your course of study is based around helping people, making the world a better place, etc, you will find yourself in a sea of thousands with the same skill set, staving to make your monthly school loan payment.

If college is not for you, there is a tons of very well-paying 'skill' based professions that provide a great life and are far more rewarding than those feel good jobs say they provide.

Yup, no time, room or money for anything else other than Study, Study, Study!
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Old 06-25-2020, 11:39 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

I agree with all of the above, however there are exceptions to every "rule." Attending college and living with an intelligent, demanding parrot will be enormously challenging. I'd recommend this excellent thread, apt for your dilemma: What Students Should Ask Before Getting a Bird.
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Old 06-29-2020, 09:29 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

Hi! I just wanted to throw a bit of a different person on this. What do your parents think and feel about parrots? I have a daughter going into her last year of middle school and she loves birds as much as I do. She wants a bird of her own, and she’s currently saving her allowance and any other money she gets in order to buy it. I fully support her getting her own bird, as she is experienced with them, and I, as her mother, am here to help her. I will be a secondary caregiver for the bird, so if for some reason she ever can’t take him or her with her somewhere, I am happy to continue caring for the bird and have it remain as part of our flock. There is community college and the student can live at home with parents while attending classes. There are also living options other than dorms that could be considered. I’m not saying it would be easy, and there are a ton of things to consider and plan before getting the new member of your family. I just wanted to share that with a supportive parent who also cares for the bird, I believe it is doable. We essentially will co-parent her bird, much like a bird who is cared for by both a husband and a wife.
I agree with the other posts stating that waiting until after school is smarter and easier. But I also understand the desire to have your own baby, and I know that desire may over ride any things of your age/school getting in the way, and you may get the bird anyway. So I wanted to share a way that I believe could make it possible and also keep the bird’s happiness and health at the forefront of your mind. This only works if one of your parents/caregivers happen to also love birds too though.
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Old 06-29-2020, 09:38 PM
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Re: HELP!!! I'm A high school student.

Quote: Originally Posted by LokisMomma View Post
Hi! I just wanted to throw a bit of a different person on this. What do your parents think and feel about parrots? I have a daughter going into her last year of middle school and she loves birds as much as I do. She wants a bird of her own, and she’s currently saving her allowance and any other money she gets in order to buy it. I fully support her getting her own bird, as she is experienced with them, and I, as her mother, am here to help her. I will be a secondary caregiver for the bird, so if for some reason she ever can’t take him or her with her somewhere, I am happy to continue caring for the bird and have it remain as part of our flock. There is community college and the student can live at home with parents while attending classes. There are also living options other than dorms that could be considered. I’m not saying it would be easy, and there are a ton of things to consider and plan before getting the new member of your family. I just wanted to share that with a supportive parent who also cares for the bird, I believe it is doable. We essentially will co-parent her bird, much like a bird who is cared for by both a husband and a wife.
I agree with the other posts stating that waiting until after school is smarter and easier. But I also understand the desire to have your own baby, and I know that desire may over ride any things of your age/school getting in the way, and you may get the bird anyway. So I wanted to share a way that I believe could make it possible and also keep the bird’s happiness and health at the forefront of your mind. This only works if one of your parents/caregivers happen to also love birds too though.
With all due respect (and you really do deserve it for what you have said, because it is admirable and I wish there were more parents like you!!!) the issue is, your love of birds doesn't account for the bird's taste in people...and losing a bonded member is serious to them, even if it is a kid...although I agree with (and respect ) a lot of what you said..It just doesn't account for the trauma to the bird...Sure, there are birds who are bought as children's pets but end up bonding with the parent over the kid from day 1, and in those cases, the kid leaving doesn't matter as much because the bird never cared for the kid much anyway, BUT, lots of kids DO bond with their parrots, and leaving for college or suddenly not having time for them is harmful for the bird.

NOW, If a parent gets a bird for themselves (as basically a family "pet"-with the understanding that it may only bond closely with one person) that is TOTALLY different than getting the bird as a pet for a child/teen... This implies that the parent will be doing most of the work with the bird (cleaning , feeding etc- and that they are clearly already is in it for the long-haul mentally, financially etc) and making decisions about the bird...Consequently, there is a higher probability that the bird will bond with the parent and/or multiple family members (although obviously this isn't a certainty)...Plus, if the parent selects a bird based on the bird "picking" the parent (or showing interest in multiple family members) that is different than letting the kid pick the bird that is drawn to him/her...you know?
If the bird is treated like a family member, it creates a sense of shared responsibility across the board and it also increases the odds that someone other than the kid will spend lots of time with the bird (and therefore bond with it)....

When you say to a kid, this is YOUR bird, it creates certain expectations (that they will be doing most of the feeding, playing, training, that other family members shouldn't mess with the bird without permission from them etc)....I know this may seem like semantics, but it is a huge difference when parents decide that they want something, vs doing something for their kid with the assumption that the kid will bare most of the responsibility when possible but that they will take over when the kid leaves....
A family pet could STILL end up bonding with a teen/kid strongly, BUT the odds are slightly lower that they would get SUPER attached if people are sharing the responsibility/interaction etc...as opposed to when the kid does it all (including selecting the bird)...

Back to why it is problematic to get a bird FOR a kid....A parrot is as smart as a human 3-4 year-old, but they bond more deeply...add to that, the fact that birds are even more sensitive to change than the average human child...They aren't pets like most people think of pets...
SCENARIO: let's say a parent allows their kid get a large bird as a pet (they go to the bird store and they get the bird that "picks" the kid)...The kid spends a ton of time with the bird (because the parent implies that it is the kid's pet/responsibility as long as they are around) and the kid and bird bond over the years (best-case-scenario anyway)...Then, the kid leaves and the bird is upset, but the parents think they will be able to just take over from there...The bird doesn't like the parents and is upset about the loss of their "mate" so they bite and show all sorts of new/bad behaviors and the bird ends up getting shut away for most of the day because the parents struggle to handle the bird without being bitten repeatedly.....Alternately, during this time, the bird COULD shift loyalties and then the kid comes back and is like, why does MY bird hate me?

A dog or cat could adapt to these changes much more easily (because they don't form mate bonds), but for a parrot, it is going to be VERY hard, so why subject an animal to punishment when you know that by waiting a few years, you could avoid it altogether by just waiting to get a kid a lifelong pet until that person is ready to care for one independently?

Last edited by noodles123; 06-30-2020 at 09:16 AM.
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