When you’ve made the life altering decision to purchase a parrot, you also need to take in consideration his mental and physical health. The cage you purchase can affect your bird’s mental health drastically if you do not get an appropriate size.
Self education is of the utmost importance when it comes to your bird. If you turn to employees at pet stores for cage suggestions you’re likely to get a lot of “uhhh”, as they often know very little about birds. Large chain pet stores tend to hire anyone and what they know they learn out of the store’s “guidebook”…if they read it! Most of this information is wrong and tends to be worded so the store makes more sales. All the information you need is right on the web, you can email experienced breeders…most of them are more than happy to answer any questions about your bird.
Overall you should buy the highest quality cage you can find
Here are two very important questions to ask yourself when buying a bird cage.
1. Is my bird going to be in its cage every day for longer than 8 hours?
2. Is my bird going to be out most of the time on a play gym or bird stand?
If your bird is going to be in its cage for more than 8 hours a day, then you will need to purchase the largest cage appropriate for your type of bird. It is not recommended that you keep your birds locked in their cage 24/7; this causes severe mental problems which lead to screaming, biting and feather plucking out of frustration. Even with the largest cage available it’s still tiny…try locking yourself in your powder room for a few hours and see how long it takes for you to go crazy. Now try being in there 24 hours a day!
If you’ve made a little space to put a play area or a bird stand your bird can come out when you’re home and be with his flock. You’ll notice an extreme difference in attitudes if your bird gets to spend time with his family versus being locked in his cage.
Always keep safety in mind – do not buy the cheapest model available. While these cages will save you money, they do not hold up to time and they are made of cheap materials – often toxic. Try to buy the highest quality cage you can find. While a high quality cage may be expensive, it will last a lifetime. Stainless steel or wrought iron powder coated cages are safe and more durable than wire or plastic cages.
Don’t fall victim to those Parakeet or Cockatiel kits, these are way too small for the type of bird they’re “made” for. Small birds (parakeets, finches, canaries) prefer longer cages over tall cages, as they get most of their exercise by flying in their cage. And birds fly side to side more than up and down. Try to avoid all round cages (cylindrical cages). Birds like shape to their living quarters, and a round cage can cause insecurity as there’s no place to truly hide.
Large parrots need a large cage, it needs to be wide enough to allow your bird to stretch and exercise its wings. It needs to be tall enough for climbing and tail clearance, and needs a secure locking latch. Your bird is smarter than you think!
Finally, don’t leave yourself out of the equation either, the cage needs to be easy to maintain. Try to find a cage that has a pull out tray at the bottom, this makes the cage quick to clean. Wrought iron and stainless steel cages are easier to clean than cheap cages.
There’s a lot to keep in mind for this one item, but it’s one of the most important items in your parrot’s life.