Raising A Happy Bird - 5 Ways to Keep Your Pet Bird Happy As owner of a pet bird, you surely want to do all you can to keep your bird not just healthy but happy and well adjusted in your home. Numerous studies have shown that a bird that is emotionally healthy often enjoys a longer life span. Here are 5 ways you can keep your feathered friend happy. Birds Just Want to Have Fun---Keeping your bird stimulated and engaged throughout the day is crucial to keeping your bird happy. This means providing a cage that will allow your bird to fly without damaging its wings. Ladders and perches at different levels inside the cage will encourage your bird to exercise. Different types of toys will allow your bird to choose the activity. Brightly colored toys, foraging toys, seed balls, mirrors and toys that make sounds are all good choices for the cage. An out-of- the-cage area that is safe is also necessary to allow your bird to really use it wings and exercise in a more natural way. One to two hours outside the cage each day will pay big dividends in terms of emotional health. While the bird is out be sure to cover mirrors, put seats down on the toilets, turn off ceiling fans, minimize electrical cords, and close doors to areas that are not safe. Don't Leave Me Lonely---Some types of birds need more social interaction than others. This is an important aspect to consider if you haven't made a definite choice yet. If you work out of your home, spending several hours each day interacting may fit your lifestyle perfectly. But if you travel or have numerous obligations that keep you away from home for long periods of time, making time to spend with your bird can be difficult. A second bird might be an option. But the best relationships are built by spending a fair amount of time each day interacting one on one with your bird. If you are not able to do this, waiting to adopt until you do have time to spend is a better choice for you and the bird. Food Glorious Food---There is no substitute for making fresh water available 24 hours, and for providing a healthy diet each day. Fresh, organic foods should be supplemented with sprouted seeds, as well as seeds from vegetables and fruits. Cuttlebone is a great calcium supplement and will also allow your bird to trim its beak. A high quality pellet mix can also be used to round out their diet on days when there is not time for fresh ingredients. Foods that are toxic and should be avoided in any amount include chocolate, avocado, coffee, foods that are high in salt and sugar, and alcoholic beverages. Treat Me Right---Everybody likes excitement in their lives, and birds are no exception. Offering special treats on a regular basis will give your bird something special to look forward to and strengthen the bond between you. Experiment with seeds still on the stem, popcorn, honey sticks, and other favorite fresh foods. Your bird will let you know what the favorites are, then go with it! Don't You Take My Breath Away---Birds in captivity are subject to air that is much more polluted than when they are in the wild. Because dust and dander are natural by-products of their growth and development, these fine particles go into the air as they would in the wild. But in your home, unless you take proactive steps to reduce these particulates, the levels continue to increase. Birds' air passages are tiny and it doesn't take much for them to become clog. Your bird has no choice other than to breathe this air that is filled with not only the bird related particles but normal household pollutants such as dust, dust mites, pollen, and possibly dander from other pets. Using a high efficiency particle arresting (or HEPA) air purifier to keep the air clean is just as important as providing clean water each day.
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