Categorized | Parrot, Tips

Choosing Your First Parrot

Choosing first ParrotWhen choosing any pet, there are certain things to be considered beforehand. Your own home environment has to be suitable, enough room for necessary equipment for instance or freedom of movement perhaps if considering a large dog; the lifestyle of your family has to be able to accommodate the needs of your pet, with affordability for food and veterinary bills, all this has to be taken into account, and of course the commitment to care for your pet for its natural lifetime. One thing that rarely has to be considered is whether your pet will still be around after you have gone, but if you are thinking of  a parrot as a pet, this must be one of those considerations. In the UK there is a slogan which states ‘A  dog is for life not just for Christmas’ alluding to the fact the dogs are often given as presents for Christmas and find themselves in the dog pound by the new year. A clumsy slant on that slogan could be ‘A parrot is for life, that’s not just one generation’

The Bird Shed

Some breeds of parrot can live for 80 years or longer, and sad though it may be, it is highly unlikely that the person who is hand raising these birds will live longer than the birds themselves. It would therefore be safe to assume that parrots are seldom fortunate enough to stay with the same owner their whole lifetime, although some may be fortunate enough to stay within the same family unit. This leaves a quandary for anyone choosing a parrot for the first time. Do you choose a hand reared baby, accepting the lifetime commitment you will have to make, regardless of how your circumstances may change over the next 50-80 years or so, or do you offer a home to an older, established parrot.

There is no right or wrong answer, no-one usually chooses a pet based on the mutual longevity of pet and owner; it really depends on your own lifestyle and family, but to purchase a parrot without considering the lifespan of the breed you are buying would appear to be irresponsible.  There are of course many breeds of parrot that have shorter lifespans, with Amazons and Macaws being at the longer end. Conures’ and Cockatiels live for around15-30 years respectively whilst budgies rarely live beyond 10-15 years.

There is no doubt that a parrot, if trained correctly, will make a wonderful lifelong companion, and this is where your responsibility as an owner comes into play. You owe it to the future owners of your parrot, whether they are your children, extended family, or complete strangers, to ensure that your pet is well adjusted and a welcome addition to any future families it may have. And if you choose to rehome an older parrot, in much the same way you would treat an elderly relative with respect and patience, your ‘new to you’ pet needs kindness and tolerance in order to adapt to its new family and surroundings.

This guest post was written by Jason Balchand. He blogs about pets and pet care at Online Pet Accessories. If you want to read more head over and read our blog or join us on Facebook.

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