Birds

Birds are beautiful animals and often have their own cheeky personalities. Colourful feathers, impressive mimicry and the ability to fly makes them captivating to many. Here’s what you need to know about keeping a bird as a pet.

Before buying a pet bird, read this guide and think very carefully. Gather as much information as you can so you’re prepared for the big responsibility of bringing home a feathered friend.

Responsibilities of owning a bird

Captive birds can live varied lifespans depending on the species, so they’re a big commitment. Cockatoos, for example, can live upwards of 40 years!

Before getting a pet bird

Different species have different needs, so always research thoroughly. Make sure you can commit enough time and resources to taking care of your new pet, – they can be difficult to rehome and should not be released into the wild.

Buying a bird

Birds need appropriate shelter, a specific diet, environmental enrichment, the opportunity to exercise and help if they are unwell. There are minimum species-specific size requirements for bird enclosures that can be obtained from the Department of Primary Industries, so make sure you know what’s required before bringing home a pet bird.

Basic bird care

Birds need appropriate shelter, a specific diet, environmental enrichment, the opportunity to exercise and help if they are unwell. There are minimum species-specific size requirements for bird enclosures that can be obtained from the Department of Primary Industries, so make sure you know what’s required before bringing home a pet bird.

Training your bird

Always be patient when training your bird. Basic handling training is recommended by RSPCA Victoria, but you can also try to teach some species to mimic sounds and respond to basic commands. Only ever use positive reinforcement techniques to train your bird so they don’t develop unwanted behaviours.

Health

If you’re an attentive bird owner, it should be easy to spot if your bird is unwell. Research, learning and keeping a watchful eye are the best ways to ensure your bird stays healthy.

If you think your bird is unwell, get in touch with your local vet.

The Law

The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act helps to protect all animals from cruelty. If you believe an animal is suffering, inform the RSPCA Inspectorate or Victoria Police immediately.

For more information about owning a pet bird, check out the articles below.

Bird care

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