Last Updated on by Mitch Rezman
It amazes me that a lot of bloggers have a hard time coming up with ideas. I have an inventory of ideas for our Sunday morning get-togethers.
Ideas are constantly finding me from all sorts of sources.
A comment was left on one of our toy-making videos saying a particular toy we were demonstrating was using a piece of chain that was unsafe.
Not 20 minutes after that in a blog post from a respected bird training site, we read that a bird toy from Wal-Mart allegedly poisoned the bird because of lead paint on the toy.
We have not fact-checked that and there are a couple of red flags in the story.
The first being, quality bird toys do not get painted, they are typically colored with bird-safe food dye.
The second is that Wal-Mart is known to pay its due diligence in terms of the safety of the products it sells.
Their fiduciary liability is too great not to test everything that can be ingested by animals or humans.
With those stories as a backdrop, I decided to make a list of the top 100 safest bird toys.
“There is not ONE 100% safe bird toy,
birdcage nor captive bird accessory”.
EVERY ITEM you put in a large cage including the cage itself is engineered to be bird-safe – by humans.
Birds are great engineers too. Unfortunately, they are what we call “reverse engineers”.
Anything you put in front of them will be reverse engineered until it no longer exists.
This makes everything you put in a bird’s cage a potential danger – some examples.
- wood toys can split, a toe can get caught
- threads can unravel from a sleeping hut or fabric perch & a toe can get caught
- plastic toys, food dishes can crack, stainless steel dishes can get punctured leaving sharp edges
- even the food itself can get stale and get contaminated in a pantry
- the pantry moth traps on top of the refrigerator your bird gets caught in the adhesive
- a toe gets caught in a loose leather knot or some sisal.
Wal-Mart did not kill that bird.
Not knowing that paint on a bird toy is a red flag – did.
Our plastic chain is not dangerous to your bird. You not checking the chain’s integrity regularly – is dangerous.
The birdcage manufacturer whose cage “came apart” and your bird escaped in the middle of the night injuring herself with a bite through an extension cord – is not responsible for the injury.
Saving $200 on a cheap birdcage and not knowing your bird has the ability to chew through the wire, break some welds or walk out through a feeder door – is dangerous.
Please don’t lay “this is a dangerous___ fill in the blank bird accessory” at the feet of manufacturers.
This all is on you – the caged bird keeper.
With more than a 100-year history of caged bird-keeping information and feedback to draw from, no manufacturer of substance is deliberately negligently making things that will hurt your bird.
You also have us as a buffer/retailer because there are other caged bird-keeping paraphernalia on the market being sold. That we feel poses a danger to a bird regardless of degree or intention, thus we don’t carry it.
So it’s is up to YOU, the Caged Bird Caretaker to ensure that the bird has a safe environment. Daily checking of all toys and perches is imperative.
Every birdcage, toy & accessory we sell is designed to be bird safe.
As mentioned before our birds unintentionally re-engineer these great designs.
We know how a beak works at 250 psi squeezing 2 V-shaped sets of razor blades.
We know how birds’ feet work and very strong legs in proportion to the size of the body.
People “outside” of caged bird keeping just assume bird toys are there for decoration rather than life-enriching entertainment.
We know the toys are there to entertain but they are also there to challenge and provide foraging opportunities.
We are cognizant that our birds will re-design and ultimately destroy said toys.
Toys from household items
- Adding machine tape
- Toilet paper roll
- Nuts hidden in nested paper cups
- Phone book slipped through cage bars
- Wrapped straws cable-tied
- Cable Ties
- Fortune cookies with wrapper
- Saltine cracker packet
- Junk mail
- Cotton swabs
- Doggie rawhide
- Shoelaces strung with beads or Cheerios
- Breakfast-food bowl with newspaper taped to top
Perfectly round or square pieces of bird-safe colored wood can quickly become unveiled traps because of a crevice or large splinter left by chewing.
My intent was to capture your attention and not disappoint.
Consider this a reminder that however much interaction you have with your bird, it’s your responsibility as a caged bird keeper to be the building, water & health department inspector for your bird’s small world – Every day.
Written by Mitch Rezman
Approved by Catherine Tobsing
Gary M wrote: