MYTOOS SURVEY COMMENTS
These are unsolicited comments that people posted on the survey
SURVEY RESULTS SO FAR....
Cockatoos Average Age..................................
Average Time In Current Residence.................... 3.02 Years
Percent of birds that have ever plucked................42.75
Percent of birds over 5 that have ever plucked.....53.45
Percent of birds under 3 that have ever plucked...19.87
Comments: Whitney is very demanding, as soon as she hears my voice
when I return from work she cries for me to visit/play. She is devoted
to me and loving. But for an unknown reason she hates my husband who has
never done an unkind thing to her.
Comments: I agree COMPLETELY with your comments on owning a cockatoo.
I did not know what I had in store for me when I got her and the work has
been endless. Although I love her dearly, I tell anyone who wants a cockatoo
to try another bird instead. I doubt many people would put as much time
and effort as I have into them.
Comments: My cockatoo is a M2. She has done much better with her mutilation
since being here. vet checked and took biopsy of chest. She is hyperthyroid
and on meds. Rubbing her chest with her beak has become a compulsion, although
she is well adjusted here and loves to be with me as much as possible.
I keep plenty of chew toys and shreddables in her cage and on playstand
at all times. She constantly chews them up. She is also afraid of water
because her former owners sprayed her with water to stop her screaming.
She doesn't scream here. Well, not what I call screaming. She gets loud
a couple of times a day but it doesnt last very long. I love to hear her
voice. She talks some too.
Comments: I would just like to say that I have been a bird lover of
many years & have had parrots not Too's & there's a huge difference
with the attention that's required. I'm just grateful that I am able to
be home 99% of the day to spend lots of time with him. They aren't for
everyone that's for sure & if a person isn't willing to take or spend
the much needed time with their new friend then they should reconsider
& get a nice lil budgie or even consider a different pet all together.Budgie
make great pets are their requirements are far less. You have a very honest
& right to the point site. Not many people want to hear the truth but
the truth is just that & straight to the point! Thank-God for people
out there like you who care enough about the birds & saving them from
harmful humans who neglect to take care of them as they should be. God
Bless You & all the Too's out there!! Thank-You. Kathy
Comments: The previous owner before us beat her with rolled up news
paper when he said she was 'being bad'. He fed her no veggies or fresh
fruit, only human junk food. Being left alone for so many hours without
companionship or love took it's toll on her.And for four years pulled out
her feathers to the point of no feathers at all on her torso.He couldn't
find anyone that would take her. And to our good fortune we were contacted
and she has been with us for the last 3 1/2 years. On her arrival
she had an understandable bad attitude and shook all the time. The years
she has been with us has brought the sweetest personality out in her. We
love her very much and she will be with us the rest of her life. Thanks
to your suggestions on food she is now liking her meals. We accept that
she may never have anymore feathers and to most people she is ugly, but
to us, we only see the beauty in this little feather plucked person.
Comments: I agree with everything you have said about cockatoos, and
we were not told the entire truth about "Cud " - short for cuddles, his
name when we bought him. He has eaten three settees, broken contless telephones,
chewed furniture, wrecked plants, eaten several TV remote controls, and
done some very naghty things- however, we love him to bits. He is very
demanding, and needs lots of attention, needs to be out of his aviary lots,
and needs you to play with him - however, the love and affection we get
back from him is worth every bit of effort put into looking after him.
He is a very gentle bird, and very good with the others. He teases the
dog constantly, and knows exactly what to do to wind her up.He is a lot
of work, and a very real commitment, but we would be lost without him.
Comments: everything I have read above in your newsprint is very true
on these birds.A lot of people don't know what they are getting into with
these birds. They should do plenty of research before making a choice of
this type.My bird is very jealous of my 14 year old daughter,when I'm around,but
they both play together fine on my kitchen floor when I can't be seen by
Comments: I will say I have been very lucky, but these Too's are more
then work. I love my baby,and I do not have to work so I can give the time
and care required. On the other hand having a Too is very limiting to a
social life. My home is always dusty, news paper ever where, and it can
be so noisey that friends never want to stop by for a visit. It's fine
with me though. But before geting a Too, remember this, you will become
a slave to it, cleaning feeding love & attention, hopefully as with
myself you would find it to be a labor of love. I wouldn't take a million
for my baby, and always remember if something should happen to you, you
must make arrangements for your Too, to insure it will be in good hands
long after you are gone. Lets face it these guys can out live us, and we
would all want to leave them with our 20 year old son or daughter, but
is that really right to your children or the Too. Always have to plan ahead,
cook, clean behind, and love love love.
Comments: He is a wonderful & beautiful U2. I can do most
anything with him but I am the only person that can. He does not
like my wife and flies at her, given the chance. She will not handle
him at all. His previous owner was a man & his wife never handled
Comments: I wanted a Moluccan for two years before I bought him. He
is a joy and a pill. He gives me great pleasure and he also can be very
hard to handle. Everything you say is true. I will love him and keep
him till I die but these birds should be in the wild not in cages.
Comments: She's had severe hormonal episodes, attacking me (female)
but being as sweet as can be to my husband. It seems that it's a
growth spurt, and has lasted well over a year. I don't know that
she'll ever be 'normal' again. She had started picking/plucking but
after research we changed her location (bird room instead of central location)
and diet and some behavior (on our parts as well.) These things seem
to help, but are not foolproof. We've taken in another M2 recently
who will squeal and also exhibits aggressive hormonal behavior such as
biting and a tiny bit of picking at feathers. We're pretty sure that
one is a male, and it's about 5.5 years old. We're not trying to
make them a pair and took the 2nd one (male) in temporarily until its family
could make a major move.
Comments: I love my well mannered, well adjusted cockatoo more than
anything in the world...I say this to myself each night at "happy
bird hour" when my eardrums nearly rupture. I have an autistic child for
the rest of my life. I will always have to plan my life around his needs.
If only I had known what it would really be like. I love my bird.
He loves me. After six years experience with my cockatoo companion, I would
recommend against anyone ever purchasing a pet cockatoo.
Comments: even though she can be noisy at times,,, and she plucks her
chest,,,, she snuggles,,, cuddles,, and loves me as much as I love her.
She is the child I could not have. She even tries to feed me,,, and
she lays eggs even though she has never had a mate. According to
the vet,,, she thinks I am her mate. She does not have an illness
or disease,,, she plucks (according to the vet) because I am not with her
24 hours a day. I wish I could be,,, but I do have to work a bit.
Comments: Beaky is a wonderful bird who bonded with me nicely.
She is very sweet & affectionate. She starves for the one-on-one
attention I give her. Like I said, she has plucked herself bald to
the point where she had open sores when she first came here. She's
now getting 'fuzz'. She seems very happy, I just don't know if this
is a honeymoon period. She's the love of my life and will live the
rest of her life with me.
Comments: When I rescued Bailey, she had snipped and mutilated all
her flights and her entire tail. She had no clue how to step up, but clearly
wanted attention. She didn't know what fresh food was, and didn't know
how to play with toys. With consistent love, play, good food, and
attention, she's a wonderful companion - now fully feathered and talking.
She definitely needs a full night of sleep, so I have a sleep cage for
her in a quiet room. She is a beautiful, comical, cuddly parrot who loves
to show off. She also loves our evening time spent before bedtime rocking
in a rocking chair in the bird room and cuddling. I would have loved her
with or without her feathers. Her beauty is an added bonus.
Comments: I love my M2 and have 13 birds but if he was my first bird
I never would of gotten another bird. He is the most lovable,funny,intelligent,
sweet, loud, destructable, and demanding bird I have. All of the rest of
my birds do not demand as much attention as he does or the patience need.
I intended to keep him for the rest of my life because I made a comitment
to him but if I had know of all the demands of this truely wonderful and
beautiful creature I would not have purchased him. He deserves to be free
or have more time devoted to just him but I try to give him as much weekend
time and time in the evenings out of his cage and in my outside gazeebo
in the yard when I am outside. Cockatooes are not for the average person.
It takes a special person who has lots of love and patience and can take
the screamming and destruction this bird can cause.
Comments: We adopted our Too only one week ago and after reading your
entire web-site I am filled with the sobering reality that I face an awesome
responsibility in fulfilling this beautiful creature's needs. I only hope
and pray that I can provide an environment of love and attention that makes
her life as happy as she can be in captivity. I am in full agreement with
you that only a very small percentage of people should keep these lovely
birds as pets. The majority of Toos should be in their natural habitat
although even that is seriously threatened by the political and military
activities of the Indonesian governament, one of the most inherently corrupt
and inept governments on the planet.
Comments: Her confidence is improving daily and we have a lot of fun
together mornings and evenings, around the house and in the garden and
off for walks with the dogs. She is still very underweight and won't stop
overpreening though. But I am investigating ways we can help her further.
Comments: Our birds love variety and entertainment just as much as
we do, if not more!! Please appreciate and respect your bird for
what it is ... an animal. Don't expect it to adapt to our supposed
"human" ways. We need to adapt to THEIRS!! They love and fear
just like we do. They have feelings just like we do. They get
sad. They get angry. They can clearly exhibit happiness ...
with EAR-SPLITTING, ROOF-RAISING screams of joy and that half-open mouthed
smile. With the right care and amount of attention, they'll show
us just love and not fear or sadness. Let's do our part and DO be
more understanding, not just try to be!!
Comments: This bird doesn't appear to be a "super male" - he's somewhat
on the pliant side of normal. All family members interact physically with
the bird daily to maintain a positive relationship. I am probably the most
fearless, so the bird knows he can't get away with much, i.e. he lunges,
and I ignore his negative behavior.
Comments: Yours was the first site I found when I went looking for
info on 'Toos, and I'M GLAD IT WAS!!!!!!
I have a small child (less than 2 yrs old) and will make sure to wait
until she is MUCH older before I consider buying a 'Too. There is a great
deal more to consider than I originally thought and will think long and
hard before buying a 'Too of my own. I think I get involved with a local
rescue operation and assist them before I make a final decision.
THANK YOU for telling it straight! I wouldn't want to be one of those
people who abuses the poor baby because I didn't understand what was lacking
Comments: Great page. More people need to understand what they're
getting into. I work at Petsmart and we had a sulphur crested cockatoo
come in for sale who was almost bald from plucking. I spent alot
of time with him and soon he grew his feathers back. he's an amazing
bird who lives with a middle aged couple in the country. him and
my bird (joey) play together sometimes because we live so close.
they are best friends. I was hesitant to introduce them but joey
loves everybody even my German Shepard.
Comments: I like the mytoo site and probably would not have taken
the bird had I known the real facts about the constant responsibilities
of owning a bird (more demanding than a dog or cat, compaarable to a two
year old, remember the saying "terrible twos"). However, the bird
is a true part of the family and I would not do differently if I had the
chance tomorrow. Your site has an abundance of factual information that
I was unable to get elsewhere. Thank you for all the hard work you
did to make this available to all who seek it out.
Comments: We couldn't imagine our life without our Calvin. He
has brought so much joy to us it is difficult to explain to people who
do not own a bird. He is our first child and will be with us hopefully
forever. (Editors note: This was one of only a handfull
of people with positive remarks who's cockatoos were over 6 years of
age. Most positive remarks were made by people
who's cockatoos were 3 years and under, which is fairly common.)
Comments: I love all of my birds and can honestly say that if I had
been more educated in them, I would have thought better of ever buying
a bird. They truly do belong in their own enviroment. I am
glad to have my parrots, and never want anything to ever happen to them.
They are loved dearly. I clean the cages twice a day, change the
water twice a day. They are always out when we are home. We
don't go on vacation because we don't want to leave them.
Comments: He was near insanity, doing repeditive motions when I found
him. lived in an aviary for at least 6 yrs, probably longer. (strongly
suspect he's a wildcaught, possibly breeder-hen killer) Was then used to
pay off debts, no love involved and used to pay 3 different people over
a 2 yr period. I found him with an elderly woman who'd had him for 4months.
Not being understood, he'd not been out of his cage 15x20"
for over 2 yrs since leaving the aviary.
He stopped plucking over 6 months ago, and is slowly stopping to shred
primaries....all seems to have to do with adjustment, security in his case.
He's a wonderful loving guy.
Comments: I love him like a child, BUT Cockatoos, at least Moluccans
are certainly not for most people. He is extremely demanding and
obnoxious at times. I will never get rid of him. I have thought
about getting another for company, absolutely not breeding. I don't
feel that they make good pets - the birds suffer too much.
Comments: I agree with most of your comments and understand why you
are trying to scare most people off from getting a Cockatoo. We also have
a Africian Gray and I think it helps the Moluccan with bordom when we aren't
Comments: We have a busy household. Two roommates,one child, a dog,
two cats. Everyone is afraid of her but me so they dont let her out
when Im not home. She has been very unsettled since my boyfriend
moved out 4 months ago and now when I get home if I leave the room she
constantly screams and everyones nerves are shot!
Comments: I have never seen anything like having a cockatoo, other
than having a child. I recommend your site to anyone considering
a 'Too. I love Mickey more than just about anything, but he definitely
keeps me busy, trying to find ways to entertain him.
Comments: After bringing Sugar home she required surgery for the mutilation.
She will be wearing the collar for another month while the surgery continues
to heal. She has adjusted very well and seems to be quite happy in her
new home. She is the sweetest FID you can imagine.
Comments: I agree with the time required with these birds. I did research
and went to numerous bird stores and asked questions about the too's and
macaws and decided on the bird I have knowing the time I did have for her.
She is a wonderful bird, but from the time we brought her home we had our
friends and family hold her whenever they came so she wouldn't fear people
coming and going and so she wouldn't become a "1 person bird". My wife,
son (13 yrs old) and I all share the duties of preening, feeding and cleaning
so if one of us had to leave town or anything it wouldn't be anything strange
or upsetting to her for anyone in the household to care for her. If it
wasn't me 1st bird and had expeirence with them I probably would of opted
to try to adopt from a rescue. I did enjoy reading your site and hope people
do heed your words. They are not for every household nor every one that
wants to own a bird, But like you said, if you have the time, patience,
time, love to give , mon!
ey(not just for bird and set-up, but also vet checks, Average
$200 just to walk into an avairy vet) and time they are wonderful, beautiful
and affectionate pet.
Comments: He still will not tolerate any men near him, or even in the
same room most days. But with me he is a teddy bear. Although he is only
eight years old I am his eight(!!) home.
Comments: I've been VERY lucky so far, Elijah has overall been a wonderful
bird. His screaming is really not too bad (our amazon can really get him
going though at times). He generally loves everyone he knew from the day
he came home, with the exception of my sister. One drawback is that he
has hates and has attacked my fiance (about 2-3 years ago), grabbed on
to his lips and hung there! *ouch* Ever since they simply keep their distance
and things have been fine. Again I really think I lucked out, he's not
like most umbies I've meet and/or read about! I do warn people that Elijah
is not the "norm" when it comes to these guys.... hopefully we'll continue
to be lucky.
Comments: I love your web site. It made me laugh out loud. It
also made me cry out loud. I am so sick of walking into pet stores and
seeing these big, beautiful birds sitting there in all their misery.
The common age is about 1 - 2 (one ignorant owner), 3-4 (second ignorant
owner)...you get the picture. I did a lot of reading prior to buying a
bird, and I came to the conclusion I would never buy a cockatoo - the term
'high maintenance' being an understatement. I bought my Ringneck.
Then this client came into the office and had to find a home for her
Moluccan. I told her no way.
So I picked him and his cage up. On the way home, he looked up
at me and said 'Hi Chico' in his sweet little voice. I actually thought
maybe this wouldn't be too bad..............it only took a day for him
to realize his mom wasn't coming back.
Then the bird from hell appeared. He hated us. He bit
harder than a pit-bull. He screamed louder than a ban-chi. We hated him.
There were several occasions that first year that I seriously wanted to
get rid of him. But I knew how pathetic his life would be if I did that.
Besides, at that point, I wouldn't wish him on anybody. Joking aside, I
knew enough about the
breed to know the time it would take for him to trust me after coming
out of an abusive home (Yes, I talked to the lady I bought him from and
the truth eventually came out! Her husband hated the bird, her kids taunted
and teased him....enough
said). Well, it's been about three years now. Chico still has his moments
(he thinks my husband is under him in the household pecking order, especially
when I'm around - I'm the established flock leader, by the way!)
but for the most part we all co-habitate fairly well. And during
quiet moments when Chico is happy, content, and cuddled against me,
head tucked tightly under my chin.............Chico's mom.
Comments: We love our Too. We got her when she was a month old and
had the pet store wean her for us. we visited and
bonded daily until she was ready to come home. We owned a U2
so we knew all about the needs and what to expect as far as behavior. They
are loving birds but I wouldn't recommend one to the inexperienced. We
own nine birds so we are bird people who understand the needs.
Comments: Of all the parrots I have been with and around in the last
11 years the cockatoo still baffles me. They are much more sensitive to
everything than the others it seems. I love your website!!! Thank-you for
Comments: I love my birds. They are wonderful but a challenge as Toos
can be more demandig than children and are so very easily stressed
Comments: We have had more Toos come to our adopt a bird program in
the last year than I have seen in 12 yrs!
Comments: I have the most wonderful loving Moluccan, he is not a screamer
and is the most friendly pet a person could have.
(Editors note: This is another ver rare case. The bird is 7 years
old. The owners must be doing something right)
Comments: Toos are not my only birds. I love them but would not recommend
them for just anyone. They need a lot of care and if you aren't the type
that keeps a CLOSE eye on your bird when it is roaming, you will suffer
the consequences of a devoted, inquisitive, chewer.(No furniture, walls,
pens, pictures, books or even the ceiling excluded in their chewing adventures)They
are loud at times but I have been lucky with my boys as they are not screamers.
They sometimes even tell my finches to shut up. They love to show off and
get a kick out of it when you laugh at their antics. They are very dusty
and need daily bathing. They love to throw their food with their feet and
beaks, having the time of their lives. Both of my boys prefer to get their
fruit or other treats out of their dish rather than having it handed to
them. They are shy of new people but on occasion they will hit it off right
away with a new person, acting like maniacs in front of them.
Comments: These are wonderful birds, but NOT for everyone!!!!! They
are a handful and deserve responsible owners!
Comments: He is like a beloved child and is treated as such. Everyone
loves him and he loves all but that is only because I have devoted 100%
of myself to him and am totally committed to his happiness. My biggest
worry is what would happen to him if I died because no one would be capable
of this level of commitment. I had no idea when I got him that it would
be like this but I tried my best to learn all I could. We are both
very lucky. Thank you with all my heart for what you are doing.
Comments: We just love our George to death, but are getting worried
about her plucking! Not sure what the cause is, I just assumed it was because
of my being gone at the office. Her chest is bare, but she hasn't drawn
blood yet. Any suggestions on how to further distract her? We have
changed her toys, installed a mirror, which she has become fascinated with,
our vet suggests we try to correct this ASAP.
Comments: I wish I knew then what I know now. I feel badly
that my other two birds did not get the care that they should have or the
attention they should have. I just didn't know about birds then.
They were definitely decorations. I also have doubts all the time
about whether cockatoos belong in captivity. Bhakti is wonderful
I love him to bits, but I am learning all the time how to work with his
behavior. He is difficult, but he is our responsibility and he has
a home here forever.
Comments: Since I have acquired Maui,the moluccan, I've not had the
problems his former owners had. Sure, he screams & yes, he will destroy
if left unsupervised and he will bite if I'm not paying attention to him
or his body language (I've been fortunate in reading him so far - but I've
heard the horror stories I may witness during breeding season when he gets
older (oh oh, Help!);I've never had to towel him to remove him from his
cage (his cage in his former home was too small for a Too & he obediently
steps up & down to come out & go in his large cage).
Comments: He is a screamer, has been known to bite people. I
have received a few bites from him.
Comments: She is a very loving but demanding little one, spending most
of her time on my shoulder when I am home. Wears a collar if she
starts skin mutilation. Did have a spell of phobia last year.
Comments: He's been in at least 5 homes and spent two years in 'storage'
His first owner died and left him to the daughter, who stored him for two
years then turned him over to a club adoption program. He had been
adopted out time and time again to inexperienced bird owners. He's
doing well here with guidance and RULES.
Comments: My plucker has stopped barbering her contour feathers, although
she will occasionally chop flight or tail feathers. She has stopped
screaming since living with me, and has all around become a much more balanced,
Comments: I can not urge people strongly enough to NOT BUY LARGE PARROTS/COCKATOOS.
I was part owner of and ran a mobile veterinary service out of my home
for a couple of years . The veterinarian focused his practice on
birds. I lost count, after 25, of the number of large birds GIVEN
to me because the owner didn't have time, because they plucked, they couldn't
stand the screaming, had young children, blah, blah, blah. Many owners
offered to sell me their bird, but would not let me adopt it - it was strictly
a matter of money to the owner. At one point, I had 15 cockatoos, macaws
and amazons living with me. Fortunately, I had been able to find
homes for 90% of them. I have kept track of most, although I have
to admit I have lost a few when people have moved or given the bird to
someone else (which I forbid when I adopt out the bird!). I have
the basic six now - one deformed 4 yr. old female umbrella, one 4 yr. old
self mutilating female moluccan, one 8 yr. old plucking!
female triton sulphur crest, one 6 yr. old broken-beak
female sulphur crest (victim of mate aggression), one male triton age unknown
(breeder whose mate died), and my first, a 15 yr. old male umbrella.
I am commited to keeping all of these birds with me for my lifetime and
they are provided for in my will. My husband and I accept that our lives
will never be normal and we will never be able to take long vacations or
have beautiful new furniture or sleep in or have quiet days and evenings.
I love these unbelievable creatures with all my heart, but I wish I didn't
even know them and that it was impossible to 'own' one. They belong in
their natural habitat - not in a cage in your living room! PLEASE
DON'T BUY A COCKATOO!
Thanks for letting me vent.
Comments: your site convinced me that i could take care of punkin,
we've only had her a week but so far it's working well.. she screams but
not too much and eats like a pig and loves to be loved though we're watching
it so that we don't hold her all the time.. she'd been at the pet store
8 months and has plucked her chest bare and her body down to the down..
she goes to the vet next week for blood work and well bird check over..
Comments: The previous owner didn't have to part with this cockatoo,
but she does have several parrots and felt that out of all of them, the
cockatoo could use a little more time. I was looing for a cockatoo
and knew I had the time to spend.
She's a very well-adjusted bird. Plays independently and doesn't
engage in excessive screaming. She will play with just about anything,
and go to anyone once she's used to their presence. If all cockatoos
were like her, there probably wouldn't be so many unhappy situations out
there. However, we're very aware that her proper upbringing and our
continued guidance help make her the great friend that she is.
Comments: My cockatoo's name is Sam and he can be a handful sometimes,
but I would never give him up. He brings me and my family much joy
and I think we do the same for him. I also own 2 red masked conures, LuLu
14yrs. old and Rosie 11yrs. old, A blue front amazon, Marty 7 yrs. old
and an orange wing amazon, popeye 70 yrs. old. I also am a veterinary technician
and animal health manager of a veterinary hospital. Your website is great!
Comments: He is bonded to me and screams if he can't have me. We've
tried treating him with lupron. It has not worked. I am going to try someting
else, as I really don't want to give up on him
Comments: I guess we have a mutant odd-ball umbrella, as she has never
shown the horror stories that your site is claiming. Yes, I we give her
lots of attention and she doesn't really like our 8 year old son, but she's
never attacked him or anything. But since we treat her as a dog, I guess
that's helped quite a bit. I used to raise border collies and they are
need the same attention as Kira (our unbrella).
Comments: She's a very loving a good natured bird, she screams every
day when i come home from work, and has on three occasions (in the last
11 years)gotten angry over who knows what and actually bit me. Other than
that, she's always pleasant, loving, and even very good with children.
She loves everyone, especially me of course, but is friendly with anyone
coming into my home, and LOVES the be the center of attention. I wish I'd
found your website 12 years ago, but I couldn't possibly think of ever
letting her go, now. She takes a LOT of work, but our relationship is extraordinary.
I will recommend your webpage for ANYONE thinking about buying a bird.
Thank you for all the information you've shared. I look forward to checking
back once or twice a month!
Comments: What has happened to Oscar in the past year is unforgiveable.
He was sent off because he screamed--the person who took him couldn't handle
it either--so he got snet to me. I love this bird!! He gets to be himself--I
expect nothing more from him. But I have never had a BABY bird so that
may be why he and I get along. He and my macaw seem to hit it off--although
never together alone! They talk to each other and just get along--I love
Comments: Lucky came to us without much tail and few primaries. He
continued to chew them for about 4 years. He was to be my wife's bird,
however bonded to me. About a year later we ended up with a handicapped/fully
flighted baby African Grey. As the grey matured, he started dive bombing
Lucky. My wife had serious problems with Lucky's volume and resorted to
covering him frequently. He began pulling chest, back, and leg feathers
about 3 years after we had him. He was also treated for a serious respritory
situation (nasal flushes and antibiotics) My wife left with her talking/flying
friend about 3 years ago. I have an extremely high tolerance for noise,
so he's only covered for bedtime now. My vet prescribed Halapardol, and
after 4-6 months use, Lucky had stopped chewing his tail. That's about
as much as the halaparodol could do. In September of this year, a change
at work allowed me to work predominantly out of my home. I have seen pretty
good behavior changes since then. He
tail flips, preens normally, and can amuse himself outside his
cage a little easier. I have playpens in various rooms...but his favorite
is playing in huge computer boxes. Sometimes he gets fairly aggresive about
the boxes contents...but mainly just roots around, chews, and throws stuff
out. My vet recommended a zinc test at his annual exam in Novemeber...It
was 3.9 (high normal is 2.5). I gave him DMSA in his food twice a day for
2 weeks (he didn't catch on for about 5 days) He was retested after the
DMSA had run its course. The results came back higher. I had some more
DMSA ordered and arranged for people to come help me administer meds for
18 days. Lucky's zinc level was tested again prior to starting the second
wave of DMSA. 10 days into his second trestment, the results came back
at 2.5. He seems to be picking less, but I won't be convinced I've made
real headway until he's feathered fully. Hopefully with some advice from
your on-line community, a new cage situation,
and patience...I can get this guy into a better quality of life.
Comments: Max is a stunningly beautiful bird; no plucking (knock wood).
He has exhibited only normal (?) cockatoo behavior. Yes, he is loud when
he displays, but it doesn't last long. I believe he was kept in a very
small cage, and can't believe he didn't pluck or mutilate. He had a sibling
that was killed by the woman's brother's dog. I was afraid he would be
killed as well, or worse.
Comments: I thought long and hard before I purchased a
cockatoo and I think it was the best decision I've made. My Too is
a wonderful bird, but they do need lots of attention and my house gets
very noisy two to three times a day and during any excitement that goes
on the birds participate in the noise level.(eg birthday parties, relatives
visiting, etc.) If I don't give my Too attention at least a couple
hours a day of cuddle time he gets very noisy to the point when everyone
leaves the house to avoid the noise. I don't make that mistake very
Comments: She is my world I could not ask for a better pet. I just
can't believe some of the things I have read on this website I just sat
hear and cried. It is so sad to think about such a loving innocent animal
Comments: He didn't have a single toy or anything at all to chew when
I found him. No WONDER he was chewing on himself! He has bitten
me severely several times but we're getting the hang of each other.
What a kick he is compared to the "big boys". . .I love him! He eats a
big cardboard box EVERY day. . .he's a new bird now that he's found his
'right work' :-)
Comments: My tooie is part of the family now it took a while he was
so scared at first but he is a very healthy happy bird now I could not
imagine not having him in my life. It was a long haul though, he destroyed
a lot of things in the house before we knew his needs. I can relate to
so many things you said.
Comments: I think this site is absolutely excellent! I will definately
be sharing this with the Twin Cities companion parrot community. I am so
glad to see somebody else share the same views!Thank you so much for this
Comments: I loved this bird. She was just like a little person/child.
She had a fantastic personality and we spent much time teaching her tricks
and playing with her. Even with the HUGE amount of time spent with
her, she still developed screaming and mild plucking problems. She wanted
to be with us 24/7. I wish that could have been possible, because
I still miss her and really felt responsible for her welfare. But,
I really wish the pet store owners had warned us that we were adopting
a CHILD. A screaming, needy pet that is wonderful but has a lot of special
requirements. If so, It would have spared me the pain I and she felt when
selling her after 3.5 years of ownership. NO ONE should purchase
this kind of cockatoo without taking a test to see if they have what it
takes to own one of these highly intelligent, complicated birds.
I applaud what you are doing. Thanks. Leah
Comments: Great survey. I know how trying and great Cockatoos can be.
It took time for us to work out our "schedules" and "expectations".
I'm so glad my Max is here but I still think he misses so much not being
in the wild and I don't know how to make that up to him.
Comments: My cockatoo is very well adjusted sweet and loving bird -
loves kids. only gets loud when he wants to go to bed - he has a separate
cage he sleeps in at night. It is located in a spare room so he can get
12 hours of undisturbed sleep. He gets cranky if he does not. He has a
limited vocabulary (says about 20 words)but I like it that way. (editors
note: This is another
very rare 10 year old cockatoo. One of only about 18 in a 300 plus
survey so far)
Comments: You have an incredible website!!And, I admire your commitment
to rescue abandoned and abused 'toos. Your formula for considering
having a cockatoo in your home is PERFECT. I do occasionally have
young parrots and before I even consider an offer to purchase one of them,
the new potential owner must read a huge packet of behavior and nutritional
information I provide, along with spending time with the young bird before
I consider the transaction. this has worked very well. I am
always available after the sale as a resource - and have had great rapor
and follow=up with with my buyers. I do work outside the home (gotta feed
my birds), and I have not found this time away to have any behavioral effect,
although I have not taken in any birds that require extraordinary care.
I do spend time with them early in the a.m., when feeding and leave them
with a warm tummy, good food, lots of toys and happy companions.
Comments: I am providing the best home I can for this poor bird.
He was an adult male when he was wild caught, unhandleable, mutilating,
and extremely aggressive. He has truly blossomed here, do not get
me wrong. He is an absolute sweetheart, never biting. He has
stopped mutilating 99.99% (Just a little on the very tips of his tail feathers
still) and he plays and eats like a pig. Though in the back of my
mind I know it will never be enough. He is wild, will be that way
forever, and he longs to be free again. I see it in his eyes, and
feel it in his heart. HE TRULY DOES NOT BELONG HERE. Who ever
felt the need to capture him for breeding has doomed him to a life of punishment
and I hope they are satisfied. I will give him the best I can, but
people must realize they can never give enough.
Comments: I have seen the good and the bad in these birds. And as you
say on your site they are cute and cuddly and very unpridictable especially
during the breeding season. My bird spends about 10 to 15 hours a day OUT
of his cage. And yes it is a challenge. I wrote and article on birds for
a local rescue out here in Illinois if you would be interested in reading
it here you go: http://savethebirds.tripod.com/ I will be also using this
same article for a rescue in TN. It is so very sad that people dont spend
the time investigating the good and the bad about ALL birds! They are children
that will never grow up and will live probably a lot longer than their
owners. Thanks for your site it is awesome!
Comments: Stella is used as a presentation bird and visits many schools
where we talk about the challenges and responsibilities of large parrot
ownership. We try to keep him as active and involved as possibe, and for
6 years he was able to go to work with me daily. Now I worry about his
mental health, and try to get him out as much as possible. Very active,
social, and aggressive. Gets alsong well with dogs and cats- supervised
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