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Old 05-19-2020, 07:42 AM
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I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

I need advice and suggestions, I feel immensely guilty about this already. It also doesnít help that when I talk to my family they just speak of the money I have spent on my bird instead of his actual well being.

It has been a week since I got my RB2, and there are a few problems such as him being younger than I was originally told and his begging behavior. Iím not in any way prepared for a non-fully weaned bird (but just on the cusp of weaning). This is just one hurdle. The second physical hurdle is that my cats, who have lived with a bird before and have shown no prey drive (not even to mice right in front of their faces!), are suddenly showing an intense prey drive toward him. Itís lessening a bit each day, but I canít trust them in the same room at allóand this is with constant vigilant super vision. This is causing my cats to get jealous and act out in other ways.

Besides this, there is an emotional and mental hurdle. I have become increasingly depressed very quickly and have no real end in sight (Iím trying) and no longer have a job/job prospects. A few weeks ago I had all the answers to any hurdle for this bird, and now I donít. It stresses me out completelyóand even typing this itís hard to use his name or say ďmy birdĒ. His name is Percival, Percy or Pers for short, and he is the sweetest thing in the world, but I donít want him and I donít love him. I have spent countless hours consistently with larger cockatoos and macaws and their screaming and calling never bothered me. Percy is only loud once, maybe twice a day, and itís the most grating and annoying thing Iíve heard. (But I know itís not that bad). I also keep calling him by my old birds name on accidentówhich I know is a deep issue with me. My last birds death probably traumatized me more than I realized at the time. The feeling of having to handle him and care for him is already like a burden and I hate myself for it.

Each day I am trying to be happy, I am trying to love him and give quality time and bond with him, I just feel nothing. Since itís still a new relationship Iím making sure time together is fun and worth being engaged. I know he hasnít bonded to me yet either. Iím unsure if itís my depression for if we actually just have no connection and Iím just a caretaker. He loves my mom but my parents want nothing to do with him.

Iím 23, and I wanted nothing more than to spend 40+ years loving this bird but now a reality is I might have to teach over seas for a year or two before I can come back and get a job. This wasnít the case two weeks ago.

I *want* to love him and be happy with him. But Iím not and I feel immense guilt. If I stick it out will I love him or will I end up feeling as if he is a burden? Iím unsure what to do, I just know how I am is unfair to him. I do want to say he is spoiled and I am giving him the best care that I can, despite how Iím feeling.
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Old 05-19-2020, 08:18 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

If he's not weaned, the breeder needs to do that...

You could take him back to the breeder and cite that as your reason...In my opinion...

Hand-rearing a baby is dangerous and doesn't help the bond long-term. Plus, cockatoos aren't easy birds as adults...I would see what you can do to back-track before he gets too attached or before you make a mistake with weaning.

They are super loud, they are super needy and they are a lot of work, forever. If you don't love him, you won't have the motivation to put up with it, because sometimes, that's all that keeps you going lol. Even well-loved birds get re-homed--especially "Toos".
Did you research cockatoos before getting one? I mean, he's not even an adult yet and you are doubting now- and the adults are much more challenging behaviorally.

Last edited by noodles123; 05-19-2020 at 08:24 AM.
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Old 05-19-2020, 08:49 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

Yes, I’ve actually spent years researching and working with parrot sanctuaries (they don’t adopt out) before him. He also isn’t my own first bird. And it seemed like a big sign from the universe to get him because everything fell perfectly into place. I’m not sure what really changed after I got him—besides my increasing depression that I am working on.

This was by no means a light decision. And Percy is a wonderful bird, kind and sweet and loving, but the problem is me and I’m unsure if it will change. That’s where I am at, really. If I don’t love him enough than I don’t deserve him—but idk if I’m chalking it up to depression or if this is a real thing.
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Old 05-19-2020, 08:59 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

Cockatoos of any kind are not for the faint of heart. They are challenging to own. I'm sorry you are feeling regret in your purchase. The bigger the bird the more they take over your life, especially with cats in the picture, it can definitely complicate things. Cockatoos are social and want to be the center of attention. When you have other pets, it can make it much harder to meet those needs.

Would you feel the same way about him if your job was still intact? If money weren't an issue? You are right in that it takes time to form a trust bond, and perhaps you are feeling buyer's remorse, it's almost sounds like a new mother experiencing post-partum depression - little emotion for the newcomer, annoyed at the sounds they make, irritated at the constant care and need for attention....sounds very similar to what some mothers experience after bringing a new baby home.

The good thing in this situation is...you can always bring it back to the breeder. It's only been a week and if you are having such a strong reaction to this bird, perhaps it would be a wise decision to return him. There is honestly no shame in admitting you can't handle this bird. They are handfuls! It's why I only own cokatiels, little birds lol. I know I would NOT be able to handle a cockatoo.

I guess you have to really decide yourself if this is something you truly want. Can you learn to accept and love his noises, antics and challenges as he grows? A 40+ year commitment of balancing time between your other cats/ your bird along with a new possibly overseas job....it sounds like a lot for one person. I always recommend anyone contemplating a bird like that to have as stable a life as possible, as in, no changes happening in the foreseeable future.

One of the most important things about getting a bird is the cost of owning them and caring for them. If you don't have an income or money coming in, you really need to ask yourself if owning this kind of bird is right for you, perhaps giving it back to the breeder would be best for you, your cats, and your future since your job is up in question at the moment. If you do give this bird up, please don't get another one unless you are settled firmly in a house you call your own, a stable income and way of transportation.
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Last edited by itzjbean; 05-19-2020 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 05-19-2020, 09:10 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

I’ll talk to the breeder today. When I was first talking to the breeder I had a job and a more permanent place to be, but things have not worked out (thank you covid). My stable life quickly became unstable after I had him in my hands (The uncertainty is a cause of my depression).

I also have been unable to take him to a vet because of shutdowns like I originally had planned.
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Old 05-19-2020, 09:16 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

I'm sorry you're struggling.
I hope it gets easier-- at least you recognize this early (rather than later). I mean, your life will get easier, but the bird will get more challenging (and expensive), so just keep that in mind when you make this call. Even if you don't send him back for good, they need to do the weaning...

The other thing to remember is that depression is usually semi-cyclical-- so even though this will pass, there will likely be other bouts down the road due to financial strain, marital issues, etc etc (all of the joys of adulthood--MAN, I sound optimistic....! ha) BUT- you know what I mean? If you have a family etc in the future, you also have to consider how the bird may impact that dynamic and those finances. I am not trying to make you feel bad, but if you have a job, 2 kids, a spouse and this bird, will that stress be too upsetting?

ANY parrot is going to be a ton of work because they are all like perpetual toddlers, but cockatoos are uniquely challenging and living with another species doesn't fully prepare you for long-term work with a cockatoo. In small-doses, they are hilarious clowns/show-offs, but half of what makes them endearing ends up harming them (e.g., desire to be cuddled-which must be avoided due to the hormonal root of the issue)..and their neediness if not properly taught sufficient independence (which is still light a constant fight against nature)..I guess I am just saying, if you are 100% on-board forever, then they can be great, but just make sure you know what you are signing up for.

Last edited by noodles123; 05-19-2020 at 09:28 AM.
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Old 05-19-2020, 09:23 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

Quote: Originally Posted by noodles123 View Post
I wonder why a sanctuary of all paces sold you an unweaned cockatoo...

I'm sorry you're struggling.
I hope it gets easier-- at least you recognize this early (rather than later). I mean, your life will get easier, but the bird will get more challenging (and expensive), so just keep that in mind when you make this call. Even if you don't send him back for good, they need to do the weaning...
Sorry if this was confusing, I had volunteered at sanctuaries for years before this (while I was in university). I did this while I couldnít be with my Quaker, and after my Quaker passed due to a cluster seizure exhaustion (which has traumatized me more than I realized).

Iím no longer in the same city as my university, and managed to find what I thought was a wonderful breeder and it seemed like everything fell into place. I originally planned to adopt, but like I said this seems perfect at first. He is 12 weeks and around 280 grams (I am weighing him daily), and he does eat solids but does beg so I give him a mash that the breeder did recommend. They are saying itís just a behavior they doóbut it seems to be wasnt abundance weaned. He also does fly extremely well. He is healthy and so sweet but this is an issue I am having.
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Old 05-19-2020, 09:30 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

Quote: Originally Posted by Caitcultclassic View Post
Quote: Originally Posted by noodles123 View Post
I wonder why a sanctuary of all paces sold you an unweaned cockatoo...

I'm sorry you're struggling.
I hope it gets easier-- at least you recognize this early (rather than later). I mean, your life will get easier, but the bird will get more challenging (and expensive), so just keep that in mind when you make this call. Even if you don't send him back for good, they need to do the weaning...
Sorry if this was confusing, I had volunteered at sanctuaries for years before this (while I was in university). I did this while I couldn’t be with my Quaker, and after my Quaker passed due to a cluster seizure exhaustion (which has traumatized me more than I realized).

I’m no longer in the same city as my university, and managed to find what I thought was a wonderful breeder and it seemed like everything fell into place. I originally planned to adopt, but like I said this seems perfect at first. He is 12 weeks and around 280 grams (I am weighing him daily), and he does eat solids but does beg so I give him a mash that the breeder did recommend. They are saying it’s just a behavior they do—but it seems to be wasnt abundance weaned. He also does fly extremely well. He is healthy and so sweet but this is an issue I am having.
I re-read what you wrote and edited my original post before you replied lol- I understand now (I just mis-read---your statement was actually clear). I added some stuff that that post above. Forced-weaning is no good.
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Old 05-19-2020, 10:54 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

I applaud your forthright discussion of a serious dilemma and hope it brings a sort of catharsis. You have laid out a case for either returning Pers to the breeder for complete weaning or permanent re-homing. As "noodles" suggests, depression is cyclical and a hasty decision may lead to intense guilt or longing for reunion. I also see a nexus of anxiety between the cats and passing of your quaker. You need not answer, but might benefit from exploring this issue if currently in therapy. (confidentiality)

Perhaps a grand compromise would be for Pers to finish weaning at the breeder while you reevaluate the future. You'll have time to contemplate life without him and make a better informed decision for mutual benefit. Whether or not you disclose intent to the breeder is immaterial - they should never have placed you and Pers in a potentially untenable situation.
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Old 05-19-2020, 11:41 AM
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Re: I think I regret my bird and idk what to do

After talking to the breeder they are willing to “buy him back” on a hold (for a limited time) to see how I am feeling/my current situation and if I have consistent income etc.

Because I have also been in constant contact with them they know I just want what is best for him. He deserves the world over and I don’t think I can safely supply this right now. Thank you all, I just feel absolutely terrible about my decisions and completely guilt ridden that I can’t be the best right now.
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