For the birds
December 2018 by V. R. Duin


“Ack, Ack! Ack! Don't be cheap.
Bring us goodies, bring us a treat.
We don't have to wait on you.
You must share the work load, too”.

Dolly the Parrot, a book character and co-pilot for child education argues that “for the birds” is not a suitable description for a bird cage, bird owner or bird dish.

Why do some buildings, such as apartments and condominiums, declare no pets are allowed to live in the premises? Birds are among the animals that can serve as emotional support animals. They speak in words with owners.

Let's keep it secret that birds are not always in their bird cages. Birds serve as comforting and loving lap and shoulder companions. Wild birds seek companionship in the flock. Unaccompanied birds get stressed.

Landlords and rental management companies rarely collect pet deposits or require monthly charges from bird owners. These nonrefundable payments rarely cover damages. Pet owners may be evicted to end the problems.

Could landlord leniency come with the belief a birds do not cause damage? A bird in a cage is not the same as a dog or cat on the loose. If birds and bird cages were so messy, this would not make much sense.

Could leniency come with assuming birds are caged? Birds must be free to move and fly around. Wing flapping exercises do not have the benefits of flying. It is unhealthy for birds to stay caged or have clipped wings.

The larger the parrot, the bigger the destruction. The Parrot Enrichment website discusses Toys and toy categories. Loose birds with jobs cause less disaster to wood, electrical cords, leather products, paper, and curtains.

Birds do not want messy homes. Birds clean house and amuse themselves by launching food and hulls between the bars of their cages. Full dishes keep birds foraging and entertaining themselves.

Bird droppings inside and outside of the bird cage can harbor diseases. Droppings land on walls and floors. Care must be taken to keep toddlers from playing with them. Down, dander and feathers may cause allergic reactions.

Why should something “for the birds” be of low value? Wild birds' eating habits feed creatures under trees. Physical activity for pet care is healthy for people. Pets enjoy around-the-clock care.

Birds tastefully decorate cages with colorful trinkets and toys. Some birds obsess with decorating arrangements. A safe supply of bling and reflective mirrors may stimulate and entertain birds for hours.

Toys may be homemade or purchased. Toys challenge birds to forage, chew, separate and shred items, stimulating work in the wild. Styrofoam products can cause toxic reactions. Woven ones may create deadly entanglements.

A parrot that is not preening needs evaluation Change of diet, bathing or veterinary treatment may be required. Birds are clean creatures. Owners value the healthy, preening sheen of their pets. They require less care.

Daily cleaning in and around a bird cage is required. Dirty bird cages, bird dishes, perches, toys and surrounding areas are not suitable for birds or owners. Filth is a source of infections and diseases.

How to Care for a Bird Cage: Hand-held vacuums can be helpful for cleaning discarded seed hulls, down and feathers. If poop doesn't dry like concrete, there is no need to use a scrub brush before washing the cage.

“Going to the birds” means something is going bad. Feel sorry for birds in wet cages. This should depress fowl friends. Cage liners are paper products. Wet paper falls apart.