January is Adopt a Rescued Bird Month! Is a Fine Feathered Friend Right for You?
Are you a bird lover? Well, January is the month for you! It’s ‘Adopt a Rescued Bird Month,’ as declared by the American Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). Since 2002, this eggscellent month encourages bird-lovers to check out their local shelters and adopt instead of purchasing fine feathered friends from pet stores.
Birds are wonderful companions but they are just as much work as any other pet. Is living with a bird parrot-dise for you? Before flocking to shelters, do your research. Don’t just wing it. Here’s a bird’s eye view of what you can expect…
- Birds are not domesticated animals. Domestic animals are animals that have been bred for hundreds of years to live in the care of humans and are distinct from their wild ancestors.
- Birds also continually shed “feather dust” — particles of feathers, which may aggravate asthma in some people.
- Parrots, including lovebirds, parakeets, and cockatiels, are noisy and messy, and can be destructive.
- All parrots have long life spans. Depending on species, they may live 20 to 50 years or more.
- Parrots are extremely social animals, and have been compared to human toddlers in the needs of their emotional and social lives but, unlike children, they never grow up.
- Birds are active and inquisitive and must be provided with ample room to move about and play.
- All birds need a varied diet, not just seeds or pellets, but grains, beans, fruits and vegetables too.
- Light exposure and sleep are very important to birds. Birds need at least 4 hours exposure to sunlight or full lighting to provide them with vitamin D. Also, birds must have a minimum of 10 hours of sleep each night.
- Birds are very sensitive to air quality. Birds should never be exposed to tobacco smoke, chemical fumes (hairspray, cleaners, etc.), or Teflon coated materials.
- Birds need veterinary care from a veterinarian that specializes in birds. Proper vet care for birds can be expensive.
Be sure to call local shelters to ask about their waiting list. Also, check out Petfinder.
Here’s to fluffing your nest with your new feathered friend!