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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-29-2011, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Lovebird Problems - Help Please!

Hello,
So I recently bought a cute little lovebird for my daughter and I. She loves birds and has always wanted to be able to hold one. So I did a bit of research and seen what was available in my area and lovebird seemed a great choice. The seller said that she was only a couple months old and had been hand tamed and hand fed and that she didnt bite...Well as soon as we got her home it became evident that this was not the case. After a few weeks I finally had her eatting treats out of my hand and thought we were heading in the right direction...but now even when I have a treat in my hand, she bites me - and not just a little nip either. Lady Isabella(the lovebird) seems to love my daughter (we leave her cage doors open because we want her to fly around the house and go in and out as she pleases) and she will come out and run around behind my girl following her whereever she goes, but as soon as she catches up to her she bites her. Yesterday she bit her so hard in the foot that even when she shook her foot Isabella didnt let go ( I had to grab her - which I would not normally do, because I heard that that will only make her afraid of your hand) Also now when I go to clean her cage she attacks me! If there is anyone out there who can diagnose this behaviour please help us, otherwise I will have to find a new home for her, which would reallyupset my girl and I....She has a large cage 2 by 3 feet, lots of toys, and we spend every day after 5 and our mornings with her...I added the last part because I noticed that those kinds of questions were asked to other owners with issues. Thanks so much if you can help!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-29-2011, 09:57 PM
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Aren't lovebirds supposed to be in pairs?? Also, the fact that you went with a pet store employee's word that she was best kind was a mistake. These guys just want your money. I'm sorry for your problem but I think the best thing would be to contact a bird behaviorist. I'm pretty sure lovebirds need a bird companion.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-30-2011, 01:28 PM Thread Starter
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Well thanks for your comment I guess, it seems a little short sighted and not very helpful as I suppose you are not very familiar with lovebirds. If you get them in pairs they mate with eachother and have less interest in their owners and if you get one, you become its mate. So no they dont need to be in pairs. And Im not some daft twit - it wasnt a pet store owner I purchased her from a home seller - but perhaps she was just feeling over whelmed with her flock....If anyone out there has a helpful comment I would really appreciate that rather they character comments, I was really excited when I saw someone had replied so quickly and now I feel you must just have a bit of time on your hands and no real input that couldnt be found in the many places I have already looked. I thought this was one of those sites where people actually cared. Hope you dont take that to rudely its not ment to be so, but it is how it comes off in my opinion.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-30-2011, 10:12 PM
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Bella,

Not everyone is familiar with birds, no need to be snippy with Purple-Hops. You are correct about keeping them as a singlet instead of in pairs. However, you don't seem to know much about birds if you want to have your bird free flying in the house.

The risks involved with freeflight FAR outweigh the possible benefits. Especially since the benefits are only psychological on your part, and have nothing to do with the birds "happiness". Birds have died in collisions with windows, mirrors, lamps, pans on the stove, toilets and sinks (just to name a few).

The problem is indeed that you didn't know what you were getting in to. Even hand-fed, hand raised love birds can be nippy, especially with strangers.

The fact is that most people don't hand feed lovebirds. For one reason, it's a pain in the butt to do it with lovebirds in any numbers. It's fun the first couple of times, but you really can't sell them for enough money to justify the time involved in hand raising them.

Another reason is that you don't need to hand raise them. They tame down pretty quickly with regular handling.

However, you still need to realize that you aren't buying a cockatoo. These aren't particularly cuddly birds. Some tolerate lots of handling well, ...some don't.

It just may be that this isn't the bird for you.

Love birds are pretty, comical little birds that are sweet in many ways. They are fun to interact with to handle and to own. Try accepting the bird on IT's terms, not yours.

Bob



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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 10:40 AM
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Hm, I choose to respond here only because of my ignorance in bird-owning. I appreciate you clearing it up for me about the single-lovebird (of which I honestly did not know) but I think kindly explaining to me would have been a better approach than barking at me. I recognize, reading back, that it was unfair of me to assume you bought it from a store and for that I apologize. These things are simple in hindsight but from now on, on a pet forum, perhaps you should state that fact from the start. You probably will get that a lot.

If you become it's mate, shouldn't the time you spend with it be more? I have seen lovebirds follow each other to the other side of the cage just to be close.

I also was only suggesting to speak with an aviary expert. Maybe a vet could help you too. I highly reccommend Mygala's comment too. He knows about birds and exotics and before the defense kicks in maybe take with a grain of salt. Thanks.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-31-2011, 11:22 AM Thread Starter
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I'm truly sorry if I insulted you, I suppose I took offense with your comment and perhaps you didn't mean it the way I read it. I wasn't trying to be snippy but I realize now that it probably came off fairly blunt...I didn't mean for the comment about you not being familiar with love birds as a jab, I am definetly not an expert and don't assume to be. And I should have been more clear - Bella is clipped so she can't really fly its more of a flutter. But I do leave her cage open so she can come in and out as she wishes and she seems to really enjoy it.

I tried to make my decision to buy her in an informed matter, but perhaps all the information I reviewed doesn't always apply.

As far as with handleing her, I read that it was best to allow her to decide when she want to come to you not to try and just catch her and hold her - is this true?

I've actually had some progress in the last couple days ... I put on some videos of other lovebirds and set the computer next to me, she came out wandered over and flutter up onto me, she spent an hour roaming around on my arms playing with my shirt and hair and eatting a treat. She seemed to be fine with all of me except still not my hands, she bit a couple times when I tried to get her to step up on my hand, but I was still sooo enjoyable.

I appreciate both of your suggestions, I ve spoke to a few different people in the know and hopefuLly we'll figure it out.

Again I'm truly sorry about offending you purple hops I shouldn't have been so quick to assume your comments were ment to be character ones. I guess a grain of salt would go a long way. I have never before posted or participated in threads or blogs or anything of that nature so maybe my greeness lead me a stray - no excuse though. Thanks for taking the time to explain.
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