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Games People Play with Pets

It is very important that you play with your pet bird every day. It will be fun for you too, and it will certainly relieve the boredom that he will feel when there is just he and his cage and a few old toys. Here are some tips:

Toys – have lots so you can rotate them weekly. Do not offer only indestructible toys. The more destructible they are the more he can chew and keep busy.

Branches – pick a branch from a fruit tree, bottlebrush, eucalyptus, willow etc, wash it well, shake it a bit and give it to your bird. He will spend hours nibbling twigs, pulling off bark, and chewing up flowers and leaves. It a mess, yes, but it is clean, healthy mess!

Hide treats – Stuff crisp food items like apple slices, nuts and grapes into toilet paper rolls or other suitable toys. Hang a brown paper bag with popcorn inside (cooked with no salt and butter or oil). Hang a kebab of fruit and vegetable slices in his cage.

Seed sticks – these are for sale at stores; give him one occasionally. Hang them so that he has to climb and hang and swing to get to it.

Old phone books – watch your parrot enjoy ripping this one to shreds!

Play fetch. Sit on the floor. Give your bird a particular toy. As soon as it falls down, pick it up and throw it up so it lands near the bird. Don’t throw it at him. Soon he will get the idea that when he throws something at you, you will toss it back.

Find the beat – Play music with a heavy beat, sing and dance to it. Normally this elicits a good reaction from birds, who eventually also sing and swing to the beat.

Other places to play – make safe places where he can sit and play and watch you while you work, and where you can keep a constant eye on him, in different rooms in the house. Remember to avoid household chemicals, air fresheners and other dangers.

An outdoor cage – Extra stimulation can be provided if your bird can spend one or two hours a day outside. He must have protection from direct sun, too much wind and rain and be safe from predators. Always carry him to the outside cage in a box so he won’t fly away if he gets a fright.

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