Do Parrots Make Good Pets For Seniors And More Pet Bird Care Answers
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Do Parrots Make Good Pets For Seniors And More Pet Bird Care Answers

Last Updated on by Mitch Rezman

At 70 (note profile pic) I have 10 budgies and a 15 yo African ringneck, all rescues.

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There is an enormous number of older rescue birds available.

BTW Dr. Karen Becker has a case study of a certified 25 yo budgie.

I personally know 30 yo cockatiels.

Most birds are rehomed because of timing, bad behavior, noise, or new children.

What better than a senior (like me – 70 in 2022) who has the time and patience that a millennial does not.

That said, pet bird rule number 1 – if you don’t like to vacuum don’t get a bird.

About the parrot age thing and the numbers (ages) people toss out about the longevity of parrots.

It’s extremely rare a parrot will live in a single home.

According to Valerie Campbell, D.V.M.,

“60% of the birds presented for autopsy showed signs of nutritional deficiency.”

That means at least 60% of pet birds died before they were supposed to in spite of all the “expert” anecdotal advice doled out on Quora & Facebook.

This happens a lot when a bird is molting AND producing eggs (males are not necessary for a bird to produce eggs).

The caloric drain of regrowing 6000 feathers while producing 1 – 6 eggs can and will kill a pet bird which is the first place nutritional deficiency begins.


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A pet bird, taken outside should be done with a flight suit or harness.

Even birds with clipped wings can be sucked up by the wind and end up a state away in a matter of minutes.

Trying to restrain a bird by its feet is a fool’s errand and will only end up in failure as in losing the bird.

Shoulder riding is not inherently bad but should be an earned privilege.


Try telling this guy “no bird shoulder riding” but only if you’re feeling lucky

No biting no nipping and best behavior.

Stating the obvious no ear or face jewelry should be worn even if you have no intentions of allowing the bird to shoulder ride

About the poop think it’s a very simple solution.

Most parents poop approximately every 15 minutes.

Set aside some time to observe your bird and determine its poop schedule.

Before placing the bird on the shoulder note what time the bird pooped and 15 minutes later remove the bird from your shoulder with your hand and hold it out allowing it to poop.

Problem solved


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Teflon is a nonstick coating that uses something called a PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) or if you prefer a high-performance class of plastics known as fluoropolymers.

The stuff basically forms a chemical reaction and particles are combined into groups of repeating large molecules.

It’s basically dried onto the cookware.

At temperatures as low as 250° fumes from a PTFE surface may cause the instant death of a pet bird in the home in another room

Although people think of Teflon on cookware it’s in many other places in the home including waffle irons, hairdryers, humidifiers, cookie sheets, and so forth.

Bird safe cookware – 3 alternatives

Because we have five birds, we have thrown out all our are Teflon and replaced it with mid 20th century stainless steel both Revere ware and Farberware.

If you are using older Teflon cookware and you notice that it’s beginning to peel or pit slightly in the pan that means PTFE’s are being cooked in your food and slowly killing you.

Alternative nonstick cookware can be found in many “ceramic coatings” but they all have a life expectancy of about 15% or maybe a couple of years against that of Teflon.

A third alternative can be cast iron which has been around since the 19th century and can be seasoned to perform as a nonstick pan using coconut oil


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What is a good choice of protein for my African Grey?  She is nine years old.


Great question Diane,


The best way to get protein into your bird is through commercial bird food.


It is opaque to me if you have a Timneh or Congo grey, similar birds but there are several differences like 100 g or more in weight.


Most pellets a.k.a. engineered foods offer the proper amount of protein.


But it’s not that straightforward.


If you look at the ingredient panels of Harrison’s bird food or Roudybush bird food, you’ll see that in each line they offer five sizes of pellets make up each particular line but, the only difference is the size of the pellets not the formulation of the food


Hagen offers multiple size pellets but the differences each pellet is formulated for a particular size bird based upon predicted caloric intake/expenditure.


An active budgie does not need near as much protein as an active Green wing macaw thus you’ll see a difference in the formulations.


That said we also tell pet bird keepers, “there are no pellets in the rain forest”.


Pellets are not readily accepted by every species of pet bird.


Higgins and Hagen offer “blends” with seeds, nuts, and fruit but both lines have pellets in every mixture.


If your bird is a seed junkie it’s best to supplement their diet with a proper avian vitamin-like Hagen Prime.


Nutriberries (8% pellets) and Avi-cakes (50% pellets) from Lafeber’s is used in most cases as a treat but either could be used as a full-time source of nutrition providing and maximum amount of protein.


Homemade “chop” and most homemade bird food recipes contain little to no useful protein.


Your African grey has upwards of 8000 feathers.


Feathers are created with amino acids which are derived from protein.


You can’t go wrong when choosing Higgins Safflower Gold – Parrot or Hagen Tropimix


Hope that helps






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