how to care for parakeet birds

If you’ve decided that a pet bird is something you’d like to add to your life, parakeets (budgerigars or budgies for short) have always been a very popular option. As with the addition of any new family member it is important to think long and hard about whether you have the extra time, energy, and money to provide a good quality of life for a new parakeet.

Parakeets are a good option for a pet bird- they are small and usually very easy to tame. Their lifespan is long (12-14 years on average), but they will not outlive you like some larger birds. They are usually thought of as easy keepers- and are traditionally given bird seed and water and kept as multiples in relatively small cages. However, the more we learn about parakeets and their needs and behaviors the more we know that they require more than just this basic care to thrive in a captive environment.

Environment: Parakeets are social animals who require companionship. If your bird will spend the majority of its time alone in a cage he should be purchased with a companion. Minimum dimensions for a single bird are 20”long x 12”deep x 18”high, though bigger is better and the recommended cage size is 40”long x 20”deep x 32”high. Bar spacing should be 1/2? to allow climbing but avoid problems with stuck body parts. The cage should be placed in an area that is not drafty and has a relatively stable temperature. Direct sunlight is not appropriate as it can cause the internal cage temperature to increase drastically. Covering your bird cage at night helps to prevent disturbances and keep your pet warm. Lining the bottom of the cage with newspaper makes it easy to clean daily. The cage should also be disinfected with warm soapy water and then thoroughly rinsed once weekly.

Nutrition: Although seed diets have been fed to parakeets as their sole source of nutrition for many years, adding other foods to your bird’s diet is essential to maintaining optimum health. Pelleted diets can be fed in place of a seed diet, or offered in conjunction with one. In addition, fresh fruits and vegetables should be offered daily. This can include dark, leafy greens, shredded carrots and broccoli, apples, pears, melons and kiwis. Never offer your bird avocado, onion, garlic, tomato leaves, mushrooms, seeds/pits or any food that is not a fresh fruit/vegetable such as chocolate. It is important to note that parakeets can be very fussy and may take several weeks before they decide to try a new food. They also require access to plenty of fresh water, as well as a cuttlebone to wear down their beak.

Mental Stimulation: Parakeets are very intelligent and require stimulation in order to be happy. Bored parakeets are prone to developing behavioral issues that can become very serious (such as feather plucking, obesity and aggression). They should have several perches placed at different heights in their cage. Cages with horizontal bars are also nice as it gives your pet extra opportunity to climb. They should be given ample chew toys, mirrors, bells, swings, and bird baths which can be purchased at pet stores for relatively cheap. Rearranging these toys or switching them out monthly will help keep your pet entertained. Allowing your parakeet to fly free is another way to provide them with mental stimulation as well as physical exercise. Free flying should only occur in a bird safe room that is free of windows and other potential hazards.

Illness: Always watch your parakeet closely for signs of illness as they are very sensitive once they become sick. Ruffled feathers, lack of appetite, abnormal droppings, wheezing, nasal discharge or lethargy are all reasons for concern. If you notice any of these signs in your pet please contact a veterinarian with avian experience as soon as possible.

Due to their social nature, parakeets should only be kept in pairs or small groups. The genders in a group or pair can be mixed. It is advised to keep your birds in groups of the same gender if you plan not to breed them. Medical needs.

The length of the cage matters more to parakeets than its height. The ideal dimensions for cages are roughly 14″ long, 16″ high, and 17″ wide. Perches are a necessary addition to any parakeet cage. Make sure the perches you use fit your parakeet’s feet properly. The bird may sustain injuries if they are too big because it will find it difficult to hold onto the perch. Offering a range of perch shapes and textures will aid in a parakeet’s foot exercise. The placement of perches is also important. To prevent droppings from contaminating the food or water and to prevent the tail from hanging in the water dish, try to arrange them in a strategic manner. Engaging your parakeet with toys like climbing ladders, ropes, and bells is a good idea.

Remember that birds are very sensitive to temperature. Place the cage away from drafty areas and windows. Handling your parakeet.

Trimming the wings and nails will facilitate the taming process. Many veterinary clinics offer this service. Wing and nail trimming should only be done with your veterinarian’s guidance. Because they’re smaller birds, parakeets have less blood in their bodies and can easily bleed to death if a nail or feather is cut too near to a vein. Diet.

Due to their social nature, parakeets thrive in colony environments. However, because the other birds will provide them with the necessary attention instead of the people in the house, they will be harder to hand tame.

Nutrition: While parakeets have long been fed seed diets as their only source of food, adding additional foods to your bird’s diet is crucial to preserving its health. Pelleted diets can be administered in addition to or instead of seed diets. In addition, fresh fruits and vegetables should be offered daily. Dark, leafy vegetables, shredded broccoli and carrots, apples, pears, melons, and kiwis can all be examples of this. Never give your bird anything other than fresh fruit or vegetables, like chocolate, avocado, onions, garlic, tomato leaves, mushrooms, seeds, or pits. It’s crucial to remember that parakeets can be picky eaters who may take several weeks to decide to try a new meal. They also need a cuttlebone to wear down their beak and an abundance of fresh water.

Environment: Parakeets are social animals who require companionship. Your bird should be bought with a companion if it will be alone in its cage for the majority of the day. A single bird’s minimum dimensions are 20″ long by 12″ deep by 18″ high; however, larger is preferable, with a 40″ long by 20″ deep by 32″ high cage being the ideal choice. Bar spacing should be 1/2?? to permit climbing while preventing issues with body parts becoming stuck. The cage needs to be kept in a relatively stable temperature and draft-free environment. It is not suitable to have direct sunlight as this can lead to a significant increase in the temperature inside the cage. To keep your bird companion warm and to avoid disturbances at night, cover the cage. Newspaper lining the cage’s bottom makes daily cleaning simple. Once a week, the cage should also be completely rinsed after disinfecting it with warm, soapy water.

If you’ve decided that a pet bird is something you’d like to add to your life, parakeets (budgerigars or budgies for short) have always been a very popular option. As with the addition of any new family member it is important to think long and hard about whether you have the extra time, energy, and money to provide a good quality of life for a new parakeet.

Illness: Keep a close eye out for any symptoms of illness in your parakeet, as they become extremely sensitive once they’re sick. Concerns should be raised about fluffed feathers, appetite loss, unusual droppings, wheezing, nasal discharge, or lethargic behavior. Please get in touch with a veterinarian who has experience treating birds right away if you observe any of these symptoms in your pet.

Mental Stimulation: Because parakeets are highly intelligent birds, they need mental stimulation to stay happy. Parakeets that are bored are likely to exhibit severe behavioral problems (like plucking feathers, obesity, and aggression). In their cage, they ought to have multiple perches positioned at various heights. Additionally useful are cages with horizontal bars, which give your pet more room to climb. They should have lots of chew toys, mirrors, swings, bells, and bird baths, all of which are reasonably priced at pet stores. Changing these toys every month or rearranging them will help keep your pet entertained. Another method to give your parakeet mental and physical stimulation is to let them fly freely. Only in a bird safe room devoid of windows and other possible dangers should free flying take place.

FAQ

Are parakeets easy to care for?

Usually, parakeets are moderate in their maintenance level compared to other birds. They’re considered by many to be the “perfect parrot” because they aren’t as high-maintenance as other parrots. But keep in mind that birds, in general, tend to require lots of social interaction.

Do parakeets need to be covered at night?

Since birds are so sensitive, even a shadow or pet moving in the night can wake them up. It’s best to cover their cage to ensure they get at least 9 hours of sleep each night. That depends on the room they are sleeping in and the time of day/night they are sleeping as well.

Do parakeets need to be in pairs?

Parakeets are very social birds and prefer to be kept in pairs or small groups. The genders in a group or pair can be mixed. If you don’t want to breed your birds, it’s suggested to keep them in groups of the same gender.

What do parakeets need in their cage?

Parakeets need the basics in their cage: perches, feeding and drinking bowls, something to chew on, a swing, some toys, a bird bath, and something to line the bottom of the cage.