The Veterinary College at Texas A&M University has put out some very helpful tips on how to provide your pet birds with environmental enrichment and mental stimulation.
They report that birds are happiest when given many different forms of enrichment. Not surprising given their intelligence, curiosity, and sociability!
Here are a few tips, but be sure to read the full story for more ideas for your own bird!
- Besides regular toys, birds also appreciate objects that provide visual and auditory stimulation like mirrors, music, bells, and rattles.
- Birds are sensitive to the texture of objects; some prefer plastic, while some prefer wood or paper.
- Birds are color-oriented and may prefer certain colored toys over others (some dislike red!).
- Be sure to choose toys that are lead-free and made from safe forms of plastic. Be careful of toys with string as these can harm a bird.
- Household objects can also be used as bird toys, such as paper towel rolls and popsicle sticks.
- Place your bird’s cage in an area where the outside is visible through a window.
- Lots of interaction with you (and even other animals in the home) is a key form of stimulation and enrichment for birds. Pay plenty of attention to your feathered friend. You can even teach it some tricks!
Interested in learning more? Check out this Avian Enrichment blog from the Association of Avian Veterinarians!