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How to prevent my cockatiels from preening themselves on my…

How to prevent my cockatiels...
How to prevent my cockatiels from preening themselves on my shoulder, which is one of their favourite things to do but not not for me as I don't like their fearher dust spread when preening?
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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
He is now almost 4 month old now, going through his first adolescent molting. He is less obidient than when he was a baby. Whenever my hands got closer to him he would willingflh step up to my hand even if that means going off my shoulder. But now when he is on my shoulder he refuses to do so as he wants to stay in my shoulder.
He can climb along a small chair I'm sitting on to reach my shoulder, even if I put him down to the floor.
Answered in 4 days by:
3/26/2018
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7,777
Experience: Work w/Avian Vet; published bird care nutrition& behavior articles; consults, research
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I'm August Abbott Cert.Avian Specialist; ownr N.CA Parrot Rescue. Allow a few minutes to review & respond (please ignore site offers for phone svc)

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You're right about him entering his adolescent years and we all know how difficult that is with a human! Cockatiels are just smaller and wear feathers, but nonetheless have 'attitude'.

The most important thing is that you teach with kindness, gentleness and by accenting the positive.

The best way to curb the preening while on shoulder is to keep your buddy occupied. I know people who wear those plastic chains (most bird supply stores and regular hardware stores like Lowes will have them sold by the foot) with a bell or two attached should be fun for the 'tiel, but you might prefer the preening after a while.

Also, never let the bird make the decisions. When he doesn't want to come down, gently and nicely remove him by scooping him up with both hands and placing him where you want him - and give him a treat. When I had a tiel in the sanctuary, a 'cookie' was always his favorite thing in the world. I bought them (cockatiel treats) at a local bird supply shop, but you can offer a piece of graham cracker or an unsalted banana chip or something else that he likes, but that's also healthy.

This way he'll associate coming off your shoulder with a reward and he'll more likely do it when you ask.

With 'tiels it's not a matter of discipline, it's a matter of reward. Birds do not respond well to negatives or punishment. They will often lose the loving bond you've worked so hard to establish when negatives and punishments happen - and it may be impossible to get their trust back.

Sound like something you can do?

August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7,777
Experience: Work w/Avian Vet; published bird care nutrition& behavior articles; consults, research
Verified
August Abbott, CAS and 87 other Bird Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Does trimming their feathers lose their trust in us? Since they isn't like it.
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Don't like it
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
can you recommend any online store that sells a sticker necklace for bird owners?
Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Plastic necklace

If your bird has learned to fly, giving what's called a 'baby trim' is fine. Actually, they may bond more to you with this since the trim prevents them from flying UP or far. Just trim the first 4 feathers on each wing down to the length of the next feather below it.

Since they'll need you for 'up' - they learn to trust and rely on you - rather than them being in control of everything

One supplier I love is www.DrsFosterandSmith -- excellent quality and the things they sell are consistently better than expected.

Do some shopping though and check Amazon along with Chewy.com

I LOVE how attentive you are! Wonderful owner!

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August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7,777
7,777 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Work w/Avian Vet; published bird care nutrition& behavior articles; consults, research

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