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Cockatiels are generally happy and affectionate birds but even the best of birds have their own personality issues, habits, and complaints. If you are experiencing these problems and want to put an end to your cockatiels poor behavior we can show you how. Training a cockatiel to stop behaviors like these is what we're here to help you with.
Cockatiel owners will most likely deal with a little screaming but the occasional biting and feather plucking tendencies can pop up too. It's not also uncommon for cockatiels to destroy things if left unattended so keep a close on on your tiel. Let’s first face the issue of screaming.
Training a Cockatiel not to scream is not that difficult. First it is important to note that cockatiels are noisy birds and natural noises shouldn’t be confused with screaming.
Secondly, when your bird does scream make certain you are not reinforcing the behavior by giving them what they want.
For example, if your bird screams to get your attention and you immediately head over to your cockatiel’s cage and take them out then you’re telling them that they’re the boss and screaming is how you want to be notified when they’re ready to play.
Probably not what you’re intending to do. Lastly, it is important to know that cockatiels scream for a variety of reasons. Here’s a quick list of things to look for when training a cockatiel not to scream.
• frustrated mating issues
• poor diet
I’m going to assume that your cockatiel is getting proper nutrition, a well balanced diet with organic pellets, fresh fruits and vegetables, and that they’re getting a good 12 hours of quality sleep each night. If this is indeed the case then your cockatiel is likely screaming because they’re bored, lonely, stressed, or their dealing with those fun sex hormones during adolescence. It's important that you know the proper cockatiel care.
One of the best ways to deal with all of these issues is to invest regular time training your cockatiel. Training accomplishes several things. It establishes a bond of trust with your bird which helps both with the stress and believe it or not the hormones. Trick Training also helps to keep your bird mentally stimulated and engaged – always good!
Lastly, daily training sessions are time you spend with your cockatiel; if they’re lonely you’re accomplishing two tasks at once. You’re training them and you’re spending time together.
Training a Cockatiel Not To Bite
Biting is another issue you may face with a cockatiel and like screaming the causes are generally the same. Also like screaming, many owners inadvertently reinforce the biting behavior by having a strong reaction.
For example, you reach in to take your cockatiel out of its cage and it bites you and you scream and put it back in the cage then your cockatiel is getting exactly what it wants – to be left alone in the cage. When Training a Cockatiel you must not let him think he's the boss.
Instead, and yes this is going to take some retraining on your part, you will want to not react to your birds biting. This may mean you offer your hand in a manner that won’t let your cockatiel get a good hold of your skin, it may mean gently pushing your hand toward your bird when they bite or it may mean a combination of the two.
First and foremost, don’t react to your bird’s bite. Secondly, and just as importantly, begin training a few commands that will save your fingers and eliminate the biting behavior.
Step up and step down are great commands to eliminate being bitten when you reach into the cage to get your bird. Training a Cockatiel to do this accomplishes all of the things mentioned in the screaming section. It also helps to establish you as the boss and the maker of the rules.
Cockatiel Feather Plucking
The last issue you may deal with when owning a cockatiel – feather plucking. This is generally caused by health issues or behavior issues. It is vitally important that you rule out any health issues before attempting to deal with behavioral issues.
Take your cockatiel to an avian veterinarian first. Once your cockatiel is deemed healthy then you can take a look at the behavioral causes listed in the screaming section.
Feather plucking and all behavior issues require patience and kindness on your part and they can all be significantly reduced or eliminated with regular training and an optimal environment.
Training a cockatiel is accomplished best when an owner commits to at least 30 days in a row of training sessions daily! Cockatiels are exceptional birds, they deserve exceptional owners – owners committed to making sure their lives are rich, active, and healthy.