Vacation for nervous bird?


New member
Apr 12, 2021
We adopted a rescue Rosella a couple of months ago, and though he came to us terrified and malnutritioned he's looking happier, healthier, and finally warming up to us!

We've been in a strict covid restriction part of the world, and this week they're lifting provincial quarantine and we're going to take a much needed vacation at the beach. Question is, should we take our Rosella?

If we leave him, the concern is that he is not a big fan of staying in his cage, and he would be alone except when someone can come change his food and water. So I'm afraid he will feel depressed, scared, and abandoned.

The other option is taking him with us, though it is a 5 hour drive and I don't know if being in the car will freak him out. We can keep the cage covered, but I don't want to freak him out.

Anyone have any experience with a new, scared bird in this situation? Any advice would be welcome, thank you!


Well-known member
Jul 11, 2018
Umbrella Cockatoo- 15? years old..I think?
They key will be where you are staying and how you are getting there. I was just talking to someone who took their bird to a hotel and the bird died of teflon toxicosis in the room. Hotels often smell strongly of chlorine and other dangerous cleaners...and use Teflon/ptfe/pfoa/pfcs in various appliances, kitchens etc.

If you stay in a separate cabin or something (where you know what is in the air) then I would take him, assuming you can drive there and have a bigger cage that you can pop up upon arrival. The travel cage will likely be too small for extended stay.

Don't assume you should cover the cage...I really have always avoided that at all costs (unless I have no choice in terms of visibility, in which case, I tape some white paper or even plain paper towels over the back windows nearest her cage to keep noodles from flapping as the scenery goes by--for Noodles, it depends on the car----I never taped the windows on my focus because the seats weren't so high up, so she could see the sky, trees, and tops of trucks, but in my current car, she can see way more (hence taping-- as she flaps on the highway). Some like it though. Start with small trips and keep them positive...Don't ever make your first trip a trip to the vet or a 5 hour car ride. Covering your bird during the day (even in the car) is ill-advised for hormonal and sleep cycle reasons..Really, only sick birds should be covered in a car (which is why I advise taping the windows, in the event that your bird gets freaked out by moving scenery). You want your bird to be able to see you...Covered, he/she can't do that. Plus, you need to be watching him/her to make sure all is well. IF your bird was so anxious that you though he/she was going to break bones or have a stroke, then covering could be an option, but too many people assume they should just automatically do it.

Make sure you have no air freshener and that your car is not leaking oil etc.Drafts from AC =bad for them too.

About 4-5 months after I adopted Noodles (who was adult and had issues when we got her) we did an 8-9 hour drive and she was fine---she had been in the car before and didn't love it, but she loved both people in the car and was familiar with her travel cage. We stopped for bathroom breaks and let her out to stretch when the motor was off and windows were shut (be warned-- they sometimes store poop if you do this and will drop a big blob as soon as they are "free"). I would say that she was "scared and nervous" when I got her.
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Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
Full house
hi welcome to the forum. Thanks fir taking this bird and improving its life.

Its one if the difficult things in trying to vacation when you own a parrot.

Some people travel with theirs, some have house sitter. You have to think it out abd see whats best, safest.

When I'm in the hospital, because I have chronic health issues, I have freinds and family care fir them but nit let them out. Sometimes the burds are plenty mad at me and I have to work a little on regaining trust.

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