One of the major problems of owning a parrot is the creation of mess caused by them. This mess is generally created when they eat, when they play with their toys and when they poop.
In an attempt to limit the problems caused by random pooping, there are methods by which you can try to potty train your parrot. This is essentially teaching them to defecate on command, and may not always be healthy for your bird. Another angle to consider when trying to control your parrot’s mess is to learn the telltale signs that they need to go and place them in a designated location at that time.
Knowing When Your Parrot Needs to Poop
It is best to try potty training with a young bird. Older birds can also learn but it will take more time and patience on your part. According to birdsnways.com, the first thing you need to do is study your bird’s behavior. Observe the frequency at which your bird is eliminating. This interval should be fairly regular, with larger birds going less often. Use this time interval as a guideline for ramping up your attention during training.
Your parrot will display some behavioral characteristics that indicate it is getting ready or would like to poop. These include getting anxious and moving around, perhaps even climbing down from your shoulder. Most birds perform a backing-up or squatting motion just before they actually go.
Potty Training Your Parrot
According to theparrotuniversity.com, there are essentially three steps involved in potty training your bird. They are:
- Paying attention – As discussed above, knowing the frequency and signs that your bird is preparing to eliminate waste will allow you to be prepared for the next step in the process.
- Watch and reward – With your bird in its cage or perch, wait for a bowel movement. When it occurs, reward the parrot by taking it out of its cage and praising it with the word or phrase you have chosen as the command for this behavior.
- Wait and repeat – This is where knowing the approximate interval can be helpful in not wasting your time.
Consistently employing these steps can allow your parrot to be potty trained. Over time your parrot will understand these training concepts and you can give it the command word to defecate at appropriate times.
You may be able to further modify your bird’s behavior with more advanced training that is designed to teach it to defecate in a certain location. Now when you notice its preliminary signals give it a “No” command and quickly move it to your chosen spot. Now give the potty command and wait until the bird poops. Then praise it and pick your parrot back up.
Good luck in your attempts to potty train your parrot. Below is an instructional video from the well-known parrot trainer known as the Parrot Wizard that will help you get started.