Parrots are beautiful, intelligent and affectionate creatures that can tremendously enrich the lives of their owners. No other creature can mimic the human voice and speak with the understanding also.
Parrots can become extremely affectionate and loyal to their owners. They are very social and love human interaction – most parrots can learn to do tricks much faster than a dog, and will often do them over and over to please their owners. Once you discover the joys of having one, it can become addictive – resulting in the purchase of another, and another and another! As there are a large variety of sizes, colors and personalities, you can guess what this might lead to.
Before you feel compelled to rush out and purchase a parrot, there are several things that you should take into consideration. A parrot should NEVER be bought on impulse! Not all people (or their lifestyles) are suited to owning a parrot (take our quiz to see if a parrot is right for you). What type of parrot you buy (or don’t buy) depends on a number of things – your personality, whether you live in a house or apartment, what your work schedule is, whether you have small children, what you want out of the bird, and, last but not least, what you can afford to buy!
Parrots are sensitive, empathetic beings that are emotionally comparable to a two-year old. They can, at times, be demanding and stubborn. They must be able to completely trust you and feel secure in the environment that they are in. People who are patient, calm, possess common-sense, and have a degree of instinctive intuition to sense their parrots’ wants will make good bird owners. Hence, the personality consideration. They also have vocal cords – and each species has their own pitch and volume. Some species are not suited to an apartment – too shrill or loud – while others, because of their size and caging requirements are better suited for the home environment.
As stated above, parrots are social creatures, and are not meant to be stuck in a cage as a pretty ornament, with no stimulation or interaction. I recommend that you have your parrot out of the cage for a MINIMUM of 3 hours a day – therefore, it is wise to consider whether your work schedule will accommodate this. Also, parrots require 10 to 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep at night – this is necessary for their mental and physical good health. Children can, and should be taught how to properly interact with a parrot – however, I believe certain species are better suited to children than others. Macaws, for instance, are physically strong birds and can cause damage if not properly trained and handled. You should also know what you want out of the bird – some species are better known for their talking, while others are better known for their affection – while others can possess a combination of both!
Though each species has its own characteristics, each bird is an individual with its own personality and capabilities – and should be loved and accepted for what they are, not accepted or rejected because of what YOU want them to be. As to what you can afford: depending on the type of parrot, they range in price (generally speaking!) from $100.00 to $1,200.00 and up – and then you must purchase a suitable cage, food & toys. It is also recommended that you take your new pet to a qualified avian veterinarian for a well-bird check-up.
If, after doing your research, you decide that you have the time and desire for one of these beautiful creatures, then you may discover why they are so enchanting to us parrot lovers! May you and your parrot live a long, happy and fulfilling life together!