The 10 commandments of parrot ownership

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All parrot owners or would be owners should be aware of this:

Jane Hallander

  1. My life is likely to last 20* or more years. Any separation from you will be painful to me: remember that before you take me home.
  2. Give me time to understand what you want of me and place your trust in me - it's crucial to my well being.
  3. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your entertainment and your friends.I have only you.
  4. Talk to me sometimes: even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when it's speaking to me.
  5. Be aware that however you treat me, I'll never forget it.
  6. Remember before you hit me that I have a beak that could easily crush the bones of your hand but I choose not to bite you.
  7. Before you scold me for being uncooperative, obstinate, or lazy, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food or I've been in the cage too long.
  8. Take care of me when I get old: you too will get old.
  9. Go with me on the last journey. Never say "I can't bear to watch it," or "Let it happen in my absence." Everything is easier for me if you are there.
  10. Remember that I love you.

* Macaws and large cockatoos can outlive humans. Smaller parrots may live for 30, 40 or 50 years. Think about this: what will happen to your parrot when you die ? Make a will and proper arrangements.

Editors note

Tobie de Villiers is a very caring owner of several large parrots and a frequent contributor to bird newsgroups on the internet where he recently posted this touching script - although at the time, he said he was not the original author - and nobody else seemed to know either .... but we've since found out: well done Jane!

Tobie lives in South Africa together with two blue and gold macaws and a variable population of visiting parrots brought by friends for training.