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What Are the Best Tips for Training a Parrot?

By Amber Eberle
Updated Jun 04, 2024
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Parrots are very intelligent animals that can be taught to do a wide variety of tasks. These birds can learn to wave, lie on their backs, give kisses, solve puzzles, and even talk. Training a parrot requires time and consistency. It may take months for a parrot to learn new commands and tricks. For the best results when training a parrot, there should be a secure learning area where the bird feels safe, positive reinforcement should be used, and a consistent training routine should be established.

Before training a parrot, it is important that the bird feels happy, comfortable, and safe in its home and with its owner. A parrot that trusts its owner will be easier to train. It may take some time for a bird to get used to a new home and owner, so there is no point in starting training until this occurs.

The training area should be set up outside of the parrot's cage. This should be in a spot in the house where there is no risk of the bird escaping through an open window or door. When training a parrot, the room should be quiet and free from distractions so the bird can concentrate on what is being taught. The parrot's cage should not be visible to the bird from the training zone. If a parrot is uncomfortable or agitated during training sessions, a small treat may be offered to it in order for the bird to form positive associations about learning time.

Most parrots respond very well to training that uses positive reinforcement. While training a parrot, this can come in the form of praise or giving the bird treats or a special toy. As a parrot learns new commands, it should always be rewarded. A harsh tone of voice or yelling at a parrot are ineffective training methods and will usually result in a scared bird that is not interested in learning new tricks and commands.

Teaching a parrot can take a long time and a lot of work. A consistent training schedule can make it easier for a parrot to learn and recall commands. Training sessions should occur regularly, in the same area each time, and for about the same length of time. When teaching a parrot, the best results are generally achieved by first teaching it simple tricks or commands. As these easier tricks are mastered, a bird will usually be better prepared to learn more complex tasks.

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Discussion Comments
By Krunchyman — On Jul 25, 2014

Even though parrots are great to have as pets, I think it's a good idea to not expose them to people who use foul language. After all, overtime, they could pick up what the other person is saying, and will begin to imitate it. Considering how parrots are one of the more intelligent animals, exposing them to the human language has its benefits and disadvantages. However, considering how parrots take months to train, they probably wouldn't pick up on the foul language instantly.

By Chmander — On Jul 24, 2014

Parrots really show us that animals are a lot more intelligent than we think, as more than often, we tend to underestimate them. They might not have the intellect of human beings, but they still have thoughts, feelings, and reasoning. The fact that you can also train animals to obey human commands says a lot about this, parrots especially. For example, aside from parrots, what's one animal that you can train to actually say human words? More than likely, none of them. Even though dogs can be trained in many different ways, they still communicate through barking.

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