Avian Expert Articles

Izzy the Cockatoo’s “I Love You” Melts Hearts

cockatoo, umbrella cockatoo
Izzy the cockatoo. Image courtesy of Gabby Nikolle

One of the more pleasant and longest-running traits of any creature, human included, is the essence of love. We’re no strangers to it in the human category, and we’ve seen more than ample evidence of it in the animal kingdom. But it becomes an even more endearing attribute when the love is vocalized and expressed in many ways. Fortunately, some exotic birds can mimic human speech. Even more, it’s becoming extremely evident that birds can communicate well with humans not only in correctly answering a question but also in expression – the expression of love. This is a story of one of those birds who have more than a cupful of love within her…she overflows with the essence.

Gabby Nikolle, along with her boyfriend, Chris, run a home-based rescue service that caters to the care of reptiles, birds, and small exotic animals. The rescue is called Florida’s Wildest Animal Rescue, which is in Broward County. With a life-long history of love for creatures, the 27-year-old owner has the intent to create the best possible scenarios for the creatures that eventually come under her responsibility. Recently, a caregiver of a cockatoo sought the help of Gabby Nikolle in the hopes that she would be able to transition the bird, who is now known as Izzy, to a more suitable situation that centered heavily on it.

Izzy the’ Too

white cockatoo
31-year-old umbrella cockatoo Izzy relaxes in her new home. Image courtesy of Gabby Nikolle

Izzy is a 31-year-old umbrella cockatoo. From her 30 years with her previous owner, Izzy has known nothing but love. As a result, she has become quite affectionate in the way that she interacts with people. And with Izzy, one can sense the reality of her loving nature. Izzy and Gabby had an immediate bonding that was not only apparent to the original owner but also to Gabby, who decided to keep Izzy as her own.

Izzy has come to worldwide fame via a much-viewed TikTok video that showed her genuinely expressing an enormity of love for her new caregiver. After six days with her new caregiver, Izzy is seen leaning into Gabby saying, “I love you”, “Give me a kiss,” and “I love you, baby girl.” The video has, thus far, been viewed more than 270,000 times.

Izzy is undergoing a transition from what was a mostly seed diet to that with scrambled eggs, sprouts, and fresh veggies added, along with Lafeber Nutri-Berries, and Avi-Cakes. According to Gabby, Izzy has a fondness for ice cubes.

Gabby’s Florida’s Wildest Animal Rescue has a Facebook page where the animals are abundantly featured with a strong emphasis on care for the received animals. The love of animals is felt in the posts. The Rescue acquired its Non-Profit status in January of 2022 and intends to make a strong impact on the lives of the creatures it encounters.

Love is a necessity in this big old world. When it’s a bird who has known nothing but love reciprocating that love in a visible and moving way, it serves to reveal that love is an abstract but real force by which we all thread together. We’re in love with Izzy.

7 thoughts on “Izzy the Cockatoo’s “I Love You” Melts Hearts

  1. What a WONDERFUL article! Looking at the Facebook page of this new rescue, I am impressed with the way Gabby runs things and she is clearly knowledgeable and totally dedicated to the variety of animals she cares for. She is much needed for these amazing creatures and Florida is lucky to have her. Bless her and her team, and of course, the birds, reptiles and other exotics!!!

  2. What a wonderful and loving story. I have a ,16 year old male Cockatiel by the name of Honey. I have had Honey for 12 of his 16 years. I adopted him from a 90+ old woman, from Church, who had to go into a nursing home. I had just had my Peach Face Lovebird put down because he had a stroke 2 months previous. Honey is the most wonderful companion. Sometimes he talks in his “Man voice”and pronounces every word correctly, and most times he talks in his “2 year old voice”, where I have to listen very closely to what he is saying.
    He tells me he loves me, and says mommy is a pretty bird, which I take as a compliment. He has been my Comic Relief during COVID-19. One time I got out of the shower,and in my PJs went out in my Kitchen for something. I told him that mommy was done with her shower and she needed to clean up the bathroom. I am in the bathroom and I hear a little voice say “Where are you?” to which by reflex I answered that I am in here. At that time I realized it was Honey, and I heard ” I can’t see you”. Well I laughed so hard at that.
    Tonight, I got into my PJ’S, and went back into the living room. He looked right at me from his cage and said “I will love you forever “. And I repeated what he said back to him. I know that parrots can love someone and express it in many different ways. I know all animals and birds can. Thank you for reading my story.

    1. I Love Cockatoos… I have 2, both rescues and they both talk and say Lots if things..They tell me night night and I love you…Goofy says Goofy Good Bird..Goofy wants out..Both birds say night night and Love you…They keep me laughing

  3. my hart is moved by the Great love of the feeling in the expression of loving honey and I say. I love you through my tears…. love and light.

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