It’s 8:00 pmat night and the Parrot is screaming, shrieking, flapping, and spinning causing such a racket that you regret getting it in the first place. You are a parrot rescue. Luckily, it is possible to get the parrot to calm down and teach it to stay quiet for longer periods.
This is not an instant fix but it is a very effective method for initiating a discourse’ between you and your pet parrot about acceptable behavior. This strategy needs a little planning and some effort as well as patience on your part but the results are quite impressive.
What do you need to teach to and learn from your parrot?
You need to teach the parrot that there are better, more effective, and acceptable ways of communicating and getting your attention such as whistling, talking and tapping feet. It needs to learn that such communication combined with quiet playtime and doing tricks is the best way to get your attention and earn some treats.
On your end, you need to learn the "language of feathers"; be able to understand when your parrot needs some alone time, when it needs attention, or wants to play. You need to learn the cues that it uses to say it needs a cuddle, some out of cage time, a treat, to be fed, to play, or to be left alone.
This back and forth is the dream conversation between the parrot and his pet owner. The better and more open the communication, the more peaceful and happier all members of the household will be.
Here are 10 tips on how to mould a quieter, calmer, more peaceful, and happier parrot.
1. A mixture of chaos and calm
Parrots are by their nature noisy, boisterous, and animated birds. However, where such behavior is too common you are likely the reason for it. Birds learn which behavior is rewarded and repeat it. For example, if you use nuts or other treats to calm a shrieking parrot, it learns that if it causes a racket it gets rewarded and therefore does that more often. Therefore, it is important to ask yourself what message is sent across to the parrot for its behavior. That way you can take control of the discussion and ensure that it learns that calm is better than chaos.
2. Learn to read its body language
This is essential for any success in training the parrot. Simple behaviors such as teaching it to wave or turn around on cue require some training. To succeed you need to watch the feathers, eyes, and posture of the parrot during interactions. This will guide you on what actions the bird is about to take such as when he is bored, feels like biting, is distracted, or about to fly off the perch. The body language will also educate you on how to recognize an imminent ruckus as well as the cause. Calming the parrot requires you to understand whether he is reacting or seeking a reaction. For example, maybe he is scared about some new item brought into the house. Recognizing his fear allows you to avert a ruckus by eliminating the item causing fear.
3. Focus on behavior and not emotion
Parrots are very intelligent creatures with their own range of emotions. However, it is not really possible for us to understand how they process emotion. That is because despite the similarities, the difference can many times be insurmountable. By focusing on behavior, you can tackle something much easier to address. For example, screaming may be caused by anger or fear or excitement. Emotions in birds are often as mysterious and complex as they are in humans. The best course is to focus on the behavior and the intended outcome of such behavior. For example, you can much more easily teach the parrot to ask for food by whistling instead of screaming. By focusing on the behavior, you can teach the parrot to channel its intentions much more effectively and in a calmer manner. Therefore, focus on the behavior you are seeking to eliminate rather than the complex maze that is the emotion motivating it.
4. Meals should be made into an adventure
A universal rule is that a busy bird is often a quiet bird. In many cases, a busy bird is also a happy bird. Calmness usually comes with thought, exploration, and play. This can be used to your advantage by making meal time into an adventure to occupy the parrot. The reward of mental engagement will result in a calmer, happier, and quieter parrot. There are many ways to go about this; hiding nuts in small boxes or brown paper bag lunches, as well as hanging vegetables begging for destruction around the cage. You can also move the water bowl to the far end to make soup making a journey. Puzzle toys that dispense treats upon thoughtful exploration are a great tool. The end result of a mealtime that is an adventure is a bird that is busy during feeding time. This ensures that the parrot does not get bored due to a lack of sources of entertainment. Furthermore, by enabling the parrot to entertain himself, you are likely to get more quite time to yourself since he has less reason to bother you.
5. Toys, toys, toys
Pet bird toys are another great way to keep the parrot engaged. You just have to ensure that these are not dangerous, frightening, or otherwise unsuitable. There is no need to pack the cage full of such toys as they can be easily rotated out. The parrot will gladly rediscover an old toy that has been reintroduced to the cage. This way you only need get a few pet bird toys that the parrot can use to entertain himself and enrich his experience in the cage. It is important to watch the reaction through body language to any toy that is introduced. The parrot will take to some while rejecting others due to disinterest or fear. Abandon those he has rejected and stick to those he has liked making sure to cycle them to ensure continued interest. Finding toys for the parrot can be a fun experience as you try the limitless possibilities.
6. Calmness MUST be rewarded
To encourage the parrot to be calm for longer periods and more often, you must teach it that such behavior is preferable to you and beneficial to it. When he is playing quietly, give him some attention or a treat. Give him a new toy to discover when he is quiet for a prolonged period. The reward mechanism educates the parrot that such behavior leads to greater reward and he is therefore likely to engage in it more often. The parrot needs to see that being calm or quiet leads to attention and reward through positive reinforcement.
7. Keep the schedule unpredictable
Anticipation of certain activity can lead to noise. For example, when the parrot knows that a certain time is for feeding or playing outside the cage, it can get excited and noisy just before such times. Birds learn the schedule and get excited before activities that they enjoy when they know that these activities are close. Keeping the schedule unpredictable makes it impossible for them to get overexcited and therefore noisy. Achieve unpredictability by letting the parrot out to play or feed at different times every day. A flexible schedule is also more fun and mentally engaging for the parrot.
8. Train new behavior
Time spent training the parrot is not only learning time but is also a cherished time for all parties involved. Learning is mentally engaging and makes it impossible for the parrot to scream or shriek while it is ongoing. Additionally, the parrot will enjoy some positive attention from you as well as the praise that comes with it. Training new behavior is a great way to keep the parrot’s attention focused on good behavior instead of screaming. It is a useful tool that can be easily deployed when you sense that the bird is restless and about to get going. It allows you to redirect the energy into something more positive as well as fun.
9. Redirect through incompatible behavior
Certain acts require focus and cannot be done simultaneously while causing a ruckus. These incompatible behaviors are a great way to forestall a ruckus. For example, teaching your pet parrot an interesting trick to perform on cue means that when the cue is given he cannot shriek while performing the trick. Performing a wave on cue prevents him from flapping around or banging on the cage. While, giving a trained response prevents him from shrieking or screaming. Furthermore, such training means that the parrot has a better way of getting your attention. The end result is that craziness is eliminated from most interactions.
10. Accept some chaos
Parrots are parrots and will always be. Despite how well trained, perfect behavior cannot be expected at all times. Furthermore, every parrot has his own individual behavior. Some may enjoy some loud vocalization at dusk and dawn as they would have done in the wild. Yet others will be triggered by household activity such as singing or vacuuming. Allow these moments of craziness but do not encourage them to form incessant, repetitive, and regular behavior. You can even participate in these occasional moments of crazy to do a dance and song for your own joy.
Super Parrot Screaming Advice Tips
It is possible to plan for moments of peace and quiet from the parrot with just a little foresight. For example, when you know you are having company over and would rather have some peace and quiet from the parrot. In such cases, giving the parrot a bath beforehand will do the trick. He will spend the time thereafter quietly grooming himself. This will give you that much needed peace and quiet needed to entertain your visitors comfortably.
5 simple toys to keep your pet parrot busy
Tongue depressors; the parrot use these for chewing and holding to play with.
Emptied paper towel rolls; the ends are squished and the insides filled with treats which the parrot can discover upon playing with them. The ends are squished so that the treats don’t fall out and to motivate the parrot to play with the roll to discover the content.
Empty cereal boxes; hide treats inside them and let the parrot discover these for himself. It is also a great way of teaching the parrot to be a little more inquisitive about its environment.
Brown paper lunch bags; hide nuts and seeds inside and see the joy the parrot gets at discovering the hidden goodies inside.
Clean cardboard egg cartons; treats can be easily hidden inside these.
4 creative tricks to teach your pet parrot
Target; teach the parrot to touch a chopstick or some other object. Reward the parrot with a treat every time he gets it right.
Wave; parrots can be taught to lift a foot to mimic a wave. The reward can be praise and adoration or a treat. This is a very impressive behavior to showcase to visitors.
Spin; teach the parrot to turn around in a perfect circle on its perch. Reward it with some praise or a favorite treat whenever he performs it perfectly.
Open wings; a parrot can be taught to lift and open its wings to their full plumage. A special treat, a cuddle, or some praise will do handsomely as a reward for a good performance.
A pet parrot has a very intelligent and inquisitive mind. When locked in a cage, the pent up energy can lead to misbehaving by causing noise and a ruckus robbing every one of their peace and happiness. However, through redirection, engagement, and entertainment such behavior can be eliminated from the parrot. The end result is a more peaceful, happier, and more enjoyable environment for everyone involved. Make sure to visit bird lover forums to get more tips on caring for your pet parrot.