Ask Lafeber


April 22, 2019

Getting a cockatiel

Hi, in the future I intend to get a cockatiel as a pet, I have taken care of my parent’s cockatiel for the past 16 years of my life so far and I’m aware the adorable creatures need lots of attention. I am worried, however, that my work may limit my time with the ‘tiel and therefore make him anxious or so on. I intend on working as a secondary school teacher and i’m worried that the bird might become aggressive towards me. Thanks


Hi Nayan,

Most bird owners work full time. When you get a new bird, it is important to establish the same daily routine you plan to have based on your work and other commitments. What this means is do not get a bird when you are on break, for example, and spend a lot of time with it and then suddenly go back to work when the bird is used to being handled all day. Give your new bird time in his cage to play with toys and to learn to entertain himself. Birds will learn a schedule and often will alternate napping and playing while the owner is gone. When you get home, he will be ready for some quality time, so remember he has been waiting all day and won’t understand you might be tired from work. Be willing to put in the time handling him, even after a long day at work.

As far as behavior goes, each bird has its own personality and his behavior may change as he gets older, Generally this is based on hormones and temporary, but its good to understand that this can happen no matter how much you handle him. Birds can get mad when an owner is away a lot or goes on vacation, but again this is generally temporary.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,


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