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How To Safely Take Your Parrot Outdoors

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How To Safely Take Your Parrot Outdoors

Taking your pet parrot outdoors is a great way to stimulate their senses with new sights, sounds and smells. This helps to ward off boredom and depression by keeping them entertained with exciting new elements. Regardless of their species, all parrots crave the outdoor setting, so make sure you are providing this to your pet parrot. Of course, there are a few things owners should know before taking their pet parrot outside.

Get Your Parrot Vaccinated!

To ensure their health and well-being, get your parrot vaccinated before taking them outside. In particular, the polyomavirus is a lethal, highly contagious virus that's transmitted by parrots, chickens, finches and other birds. Allowing your pet parrot to roam free outside without the polyomavirus vaccine leaves them vulnerable to catching this potentially deadly virus. Call around to find a professional avian veterinarian who's capable of performing this vaccine. Once your parrot is vaccinated, they'll be safe from catching it.

There are several other parrot vaccines out there that a veterinarian may try to coerce you into purchasing. The truth, however, is that most of them are completely unnecessary as long as your parrot remains in your backyard or garden.

Let Your Parrot Look Out The Window

To help your parrot gradually grow accustomed to the exciting world of the outdoors, open up the curtains in your home so they can look out the window. Most pet parrots are immediately captivated by the sight of the outdoors. They'll stare for hours with their head fixated on any other animal or person walking by.

Get a Harness and Leash

How would you like to take your pet parrot on outdoor adventures, exploring the forests, back yard, or just hanging out on your patio? Many owners assume this isn't possible. After all, allowing a parrot to roam outside may result in them flying away, which is a risk most owners aren't willing to take. Using a parrot, harness, however, allows owners to take their feathered friend practically anywhere, including the outdoors, without fear of them flying away. Dont forget to bring along their favorite homemade snacks and treats to keep them energized for the day!

Also known as a bird flight harness, a parrot harness is exactly what it sounds like: an adjustable harness that fits around a parrot's body in order to prevent them from flying or running away (see image to the right). It's an otherwise simple accessory that can open up a whole new world of possibilities for parrots and their respective owners.

Choosing The Right Parrot Harness

It's important for owners to choose a high-quality, well-fitted harness for their parrot. Being that parrots come in all different shapes and sizes, there's no such thing as a one-size-fits-all harness. Granted, some harnesses feature fully adjustable straps, but they are still usually offered in several different sizes: x-small, small, medium, large, x-large, etc. Choose the size that's appropriate for your parrot to ensure they are safe and comfortable.

Introducing Your Parrot To a Harness

Now comes the fun part (or not so fun part) of introducing your parrot to their new harness. Parrots are finicky

creatures by nature; therefore, they may show hesitation towards this other-worldly contraption. There are a couple of steps owners can take to make the experience more accommodating for their parrot, one of which is to start early. The earlier you begin to train your parrot with the harness, the better.

Start by opening up your parrot's cage and gently wrapping the harness around their body. Don't force your parrot to wear the harness if they are exhibiting signs of fear and/or aggression. Instead, take your time by slowly, gently placing the harness around their body. Once the harness is successfully attached and straps adjusted to a secure yet comfortable length, take your parrot out of its cage and let them roam around the house.

Short 'N Sweet

The key thing to remember is that you want to keep your harness sessions short and sweet. Allowing your parrot to roam around the house for 15-25 minutes per day while wearing a harness should suffice. As your parrot become accustomed to it, you can then venture outside.

Note: never take your pet parrot outside without some form of restraint.

Even if they are well-behaved and obey your commands, their natural instinct to fly away may kick in once they get outside. Thankfully, there are special parrot harness and leash combinations (yes, you read that correctly) designed for this reason. These harnesses slip on over the torso of the parrot to prevent them from flying away.

With your parrot geared up in the appropriate harness and leash combination, you can now take them outside. If you have a porch, patio or garden area, let your parrot walk around the ground while you hold onto the leash. Even if it's just for 10-15 minutes, your parrot will love short sessions of being outdoor. Try and incorporate tricks for them to learn while you're at it too!

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