What to Know Before Getting a Pet Bird


Birds are beautiful pets. They’re an entertaining and exciting addition to almost any household. At the same time, adopting or purchasing a bird should never be a spontaneous decision.

Like any pet, deciding to get a pet bird is a long-lasting commitment that requires careful consideration and preparation. Keeping your pet bird cognitively stimulated and maintaining their environment will be imperative to developing a good relationship with your bird, and will help ensure that it doesn’t become frustrated or develop behavioral problems.

Today, our experienced veterinarians at Flamingo Pet Clinic in Las Vegas, NV are going to offer some insights and tips into the ins-and-outs of owning a pet bird.

1. Be Prepared to Commit Time to Your Bird

People often believe that birds require less care and attention that other pets, like cats and dogs. People make common assumptions that birds only need fresh water, clean cages, and bird seed to be happy.

On the contrary, birds are highly social creatures. They are intelligent and require a lot of routine interaction. Before owning a bird, you will need to make sure you have time to commit to hanging out with your bird on a regular basis.

With the exception of canaries and finches, most pet birds need to spend time outside of their cages. When birds aren’t given enough attention, they can become aggressive. Sometimes they will even pick their feather out of frustration. Larger birds, like parrots, tend to require more attention and mental stimulation

2. Be Prepared for Expenses

Small parrots are more popular, because they have great personalities and they are lower cost purchases than larger birds. At the same time, you should be prepared for some initial costs, like purchasing a cage, toys, and initial vet exams. Over all, birds live a long time and cost relatively less than other pets. However, you should still be aware of the financial responsibility of owning a bird and feel committed to paying for future expenses.

3. Make Sure You Don’t Have Housing Restrictions Against Birds

Before choosing a bird for a pet, you need to look into pet restrictions where you live. Some apartments and condos have strict rules against birds. You might need to pay a pet deposit, before your apartment allows you to keep a bird.

4. Be Prepared for Noise with Pet Birds

Some birds are more notorious for their screaming noises than others. However, all birds make noises. Before making the leap of buying a bird, we recommend looking into the type of bird you’re thinking about purchasing. Larger birds, like amazon parrots and macaws, tend to be much more vocal. If you live in an apartment or condo, we recommend consulting with your neighbors and landlord first.

5. Make Sure You have Enough Space for Your Pet Bird

Before purchasing a bird, you should do research to determine the size bird cage it needs. Your house will need to be big enough for a large bird cage without feeling congested. Beyond having room for the bird cage, you should make sure there is space in your living area for birds to hangout outside of their cage. Birds need regular activity outside of their cages.

6. How Will Your Other Animals Interact with Your Bird?

Do you have other pets in your home, like dogs, cats, or even reptiles? Even if you have a sweet, domesticated dog and cat, you should never leave your bird out with other animals without supervision. Pet birds often suffer serious injuries and sometimes death from other pets. Cat bites and scratches can lead to lethal consequences. If you have other birds, it's important to note that sometimes birds can become aggressive with other birds, which can lead to removed toes and injured beaks.

7. Cleaning Your Pet Bird’s Environment

One of the most important aspects of owning a pet bird will be practicing proper hygiene. Dirty food and water can lead to infections, along with dirty cages from feces. Dusty cages can pose threats to humans, causing allergies and illnesses. Keeping your bird’s cage clean will help reduce the risk of illness for both your bird and anyone in the environment. You should make it a point to change the cage’s bedding, food, and water daily.

8. Veterinary Care for Pet Birds

You will need to take your pet bird to the vet for yearly physical exams. Yearly exams will include blood work, oral swabs, and fecal exams. Since birds are considered “prey animals,” they are often good at hiding their diseases, until they have advanced to later stages.

At Flamingo Vet Clinic, we will help educate you on the signs and symptoms of common bird illnesses, so your bird can be treated, before the disease develops into a more lethal problem. Have more questions about owning a bird, or looking for an experienced bird doctor? Call Flamingo Vet Clinic in Las Vegas today at 702-903-3200.