How to Make Your Parakeet Trust You

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Parakeets are among the most popular pet birds because of their friendly disposition and highly social nature. When you first bring your parakeet home, it may be a bit skittish. With a little patience, however, you can quickly gain your parakeet's trust.

Things You'll Need

  • Birdseed
  • Bird treats
  • Blanket or towel
  • Create a calm environment. Parakeets are sensitive to environmental changes, which means the first few days in a new home can be stressful. Allow your parakeet time to adjust to its new setting before you begin trying to train it. Avoid forcing interactions in the first few days.

  • Place a drape over the cage at night. Parakeets need a dark, calm environment at night in order to feel safe during the day. Place a lightweight towel or sheet over your bird's cage at night before you go to bed. Don't forget to remove the drape in the morning.

  • Give your bird a treat every time you approach its cage. Something as simple as birdseed can work wonders, but parakeets also love yogurt chips and raisins. When you hand-feed your bird, your bird will begin to associate you with getting good things.

  • Place your hand in the cage and give your bird a treat. Avoid making any sudden movements. Over the course of several weeks, increase the amount of time your hand spends in the cage.

  • Encourage your parakeet to get onto your hand. Place a treat in the center of your hand so that your parakeet has to stand on your hand to get it. Do this every day for a week without lifting up your parakeet. When your parakeet is reliably getting onto your hand without signs of fear, you can begin to lift it out of the cage.

  • Gently scratch your parakeet's head and give it a treat. This teaches your parakeet to allow you to touch it.

Tips & Warnings

  • Avoid making sudden movements around your parakeet.
  • Never force your parakeet to interact with you or try to catch your parakeet if it is trying to escape.
  • Never grab your parakeet by its wings or tail.
  • Do not allow children to poke their hands or fingers into the parakeet's cage.

References

  • "Parakeets for Dummies"; Nikki Moustaki; 2007
  • "Why Do Parakeets Do That?"; Nikki Moustaki, Buck Jones; 2003
  • "Budgerigars"; Hildegard Niemann; 2008
  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
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