macawsAfter decades of rehabilitating birds, particularly larger parrots; I have one thing to say – “PARROTS ARE NOT PETS!!” Regardless of how big the cage, regardless of the healthcare the bird receives, regardless of the money spent on food – you should not own a parrot.

These gorgeous creatures do not belong in our homes. They belong in the forests and jungles from where their species originate. They belong to the skies, to the trees and the world outside. Not our world inside.
Keeping parrots, to me, is the utmost in cruelty. Then there are the idiots who believe that clipping the flight feathers is a cruel practice. Right, like an escape into the winter sky isn’t cruel. I can’t count the number of times I have seen or heard of a parrot escaping in this manner, never to be seen again.

We no longer accept birds into our home, for rehabilitation and/or fostering. It was simply too heartbreaking. The damage inflicted on these beautiful creatures simply became too much for us to bear. The more birds who came into our lives, the more convinced we became in our belief that no parrot should be subjected to a life as a pet.

Don’t ask me for advice on choosing a parrot or parrot care because you will not like my answer. Parrots are not accessories for a room, they aren’t a “fun” thing to own; they are living, breathing creatures that require more space than any of us can offer them.

You are not qualified to own a parrot; you don’t have the right to own a parrot. Stop creating the market for them by not buying one, in the belief that this is the companion for you.

If the inherent cruelty of owning a bird isn’t enough for you? Read on.

They may well out live you; their medical care is hard to find – you need a vet who specializes in exotic birds.

Large birds are like recalcitrant 2 year olds with the destructive capacity of a teenager. They WILL eat your furniture and rip your grandmother’s quilt to shreds.

They can bite and easily remove the finger of an adult.  Many species of birds will “bond” with one particular member of the family and woe to anyone who seems to be encroaching on that territory. Birds will attack human beings. The attack can be not only traumatic for all concerned but result in severe injury to both.

Birds are not hypoallergenic. Birds have dander; just like dogs and cats, horses and cows. The dander can result in allergies and asthma.

Birds can also harbour disease that can be passed to humans (zoonosis); I, personally, did battle with psittacosis.

Do yourself and the parrot world a favour; find another companion to fill your void. Get a fish, better yet, a pet rock. The latter you can paint and will make a far better companion than a parrot; no poo to scrape off cage bars, walls and floors. No screaming and squawking when the sun rises and sets. No stitches from an intentional or accidental bite. No massive vet bills. No need for expensive cages. And best of all; pet rocks can, safely, be returned to the wild.

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