How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Patricia Your Own Question

Patricia
Patricia, Parrot Consultant
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 1759
Experience:  Published author, free lance bird behaviorist, adviser to the parrots at Sarasota Jungle Gardens.
1035247
Type Your Pet Question Here...
Patricia is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

how can i train my african grey parrot to poo in his cage ...

Customer Question

how can i train my african grey parrot to poo in his cage instead of all over the place he is 4 months old
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Patricia replied 8 years ago.
Hi Alice. Welcome to the wonderful world of living with a Grey. You should not try to force him to do his droppings inside his cage. That is his home and where he sleeps. Most Greys will not foul their cages if at all possible. When you think about it, that is nature and to try to foce him to do otherwise is going against nature. In the wild, to put droppings where you sleep is to attract predators. You probably already know your Grey has the highest IQ of any of the parrots and one of the prime keys to living with them successfully is to respect their intelligence and work with it, never against it. My Grey will not do a dropping in his cage if there is anyway at all to avoid it. The way I handle it is to keep a layer of newspaper so that is is directly underneath his cage door when it is open. I let him out first thing every morning, he goes right to the top of his door and drops it on the paper. I roll it up and it's gone. Actually that is a lot easier than having to clean if off the cage grate. While I never recommend strict potty training for any parrot because it can be dangerous for them, it can be very handy if they have a word to associate with the deed. At my house we keep it simple. We use "poop". If I want my Grey to do his business in a certain spot or if I want him to try before I take him somewhere else, I ask him to poop. If he can, he will, while he is over the papers. He is now to the point where he tells me "hafta poop". He also tells me when I need to "get that poop" because he knows that when he goes, if I'm handy, I wipe it up right away. You can start by putting the papers where they will catch his first big one in the morning. Use whatever word you want but be consistent always using the same word. As soon as you see the indicator he is about to go, repeat the word several times. I call it the "poop squat wiggle". I'm sure you have seen it. Then as soon as he goes, praise him. It won't take him long to associate the word with the deed. The important thing is to never scold or try to punish him for going whenever and whereever hs needs to. Only praise him lavishly when he uses his papers. If you scold or punish, you could end up causing him to try to hold it until he thinks it's okay. That could lead to all kinds of health problems. The botXXXXX XXXXXne is, if you have birds, you have poop. It's just one of the things we have to accept and deal with. For moving about the house and so he can spend as much time with you as possible, one solution is to get him a sturdy wicker basket that has a good handle, suitable for perching. Line the basket with several layers of paper towels. Tie some toys to the handle. Have him step onto the handle and take him to other rooms with you when you are going to be doing something that he can safely be around. (Not when you are using any cleaning products, etc.) He can poop into the basket when he needs to. Yours is still very much a baby and right now is the time to start with having him learn things. I'd get the basket and start right away with this procedure. You don't have to spend a lot of money because he may very well want to chew it also. I'd check out some thrift stores for a suitable one. Wipe it down good with an apple cider vinegar and water solution. That should kill any germs. He will quickly learn to love his basket when he realizes that it means getting sp spend more time with you. He is most assuredly a parrot that you cannot leave sitting in his cage for very long at a time. He is too smart and will get too bored. He is also going to need some puzzle type toys and things that will challenge his intellect. Thrift stores are good source for that as well. When children out grow those expensive Fishcer Price types of toys that play music, talk, etc. , you can pick them up very cheap. The rule of thumb is that almost any toy that is safe for infants up to 3-4 years old is also safe for a parrot. If this is your first experience with birds, you have really bitten off a lot. Greys are very complex parrots and not generally recommended as "first birds" or for the novice bird owner. I hope this will help but if you have any other questions at all, just let me know. Sharing you life with a Grey can be so much fun and so rewarding but it can also get very challenging at times. I hope your experience with yours will be as much fun for you as I have with mine. Just let me know if you need any more help. Patricia

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I must tell you I found this site by accident and was amazed when I asked a question of the Veteranians online. I wish I could have found it sooner it could have made such a difference in the outcome of my pet's surgery. However, I am passing along the information to my sister-in-law (a cat-rescue person who is also a nurse), and perhaps it will help someone else who may experience the same problem. The doctor who answered my question was amazing, and while it didn't come it time to change the outcome of my situation, it is reassuring to know the caliber of Vets/Doctors that you have at JustAnswer. Thank you for being there. Alice H. Jacksonville, Fl.
< Last | Next >
  • I must tell you I found this site by accident and was amazed when I asked a question of the Veteranians online. I wish I could have found it sooner it could have made such a difference in the outcome of my pet's surgery. However, I am passing along the information to my sister-in-law (a cat-rescue person who is also a nurse), and perhaps it will help someone else who may experience the same problem. The doctor who answered my question was amazing, and while it didn't come it time to change the outcome of my situation, it is reassuring to know the caliber of Vets/Doctors that you have at JustAnswer. Thank you for being there. Alice H. Jacksonville, Fl.
  • You are a light at the end of scary tunnel when $ are tight, but people need professional help to turn to for help with their dear pets! Linh Charleston, WV
  • $1,000 spent at his vet, and I finally get the correct diagnosis from Nancy Holmes for $15 Carol Cedar Hill, MO
  • I think this is the greatest web site in the world. Thanks to all! Judy New Haven, CT
  • I have referred several friends to your web site. I'm impressed with how easy it is to use your site, the Experts available and the quickness of answers. Nina USA
  • I am completely pleased with the quick response that I received in our time of need for our dog, Jasmine. I couldn't believe how quick the response was and I thank you. It's good to know you're there!! Jasmine's Mom USA
  • Please let everyone involved with your site know that your Expert, Dr. Lucy, has saved my dog's life. I will recommend your site to all my pet loving friends. Thank you again for simply being there! Sonya G Easley, SC
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    522
    2003 Graduate
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetforyou/2012-6-20_33122_PearlPhoto.64x64.jpg Dr. Andy's Avatar

    Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    522
    2003 Graduate
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/Jav917/2012-2-20_54059_201221802254JoananddavidArchuleta3.64x64.jpg Joan's Avatar

    Joan

    Vet Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    2337
    Vet Tech for 30+yrs. Small Animals and Fish
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RY/rydergar/2012-6-6_192240_IMG0328.64x64.JPG Dr. Gary's Avatar

    Dr. Gary

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    273
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/1I/1ISUDVM/2011-3-1_22028_Honeymoon2005075294928803490646858.64x64.jpg Dr. Bruce's Avatar

    Dr. Bruce

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    157
    12 years of experience in emergency, surgery and medicine
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MS/MsAM/2012-6-9_16426_anna.64x64.jpeg Anna's Avatar

    Anna

    Pet Expert/Biologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2916
    40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/babybloo/2011-3-10_62613_DavidandI.64x64.jpg Theresa's Avatar

    Theresa

    Voice for your pet

    Satisfied Customers:

    1132
    Veterinary Technician for 15 years
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JA/jadedangel57/2011-11-8_193134_janenewsm.64x64.jpg Jane Lefler's Avatar

    Jane Lefler

    Behaviorist, Breeder, See Qual.

    Satisfied Customers:

    884
    15 years Breeding Experience, Former vol. Vet Assistant, Dog Behaviorist
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Pet Specialist
Patricia
Patricia
1543 Satisfied Customers
Published author, free lance bird behaviorist, adviser to the parrots at Sarasota Jungle Gardens.