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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not new to birds, so I know all about the common training techniques (food bribery, etc). Just curious about others' experiences with semi-tame or standoffish birds that ended up becoming more affectionate over time.

I've only had a couple of weeks with Autumn so far, and she was not hand-fed. Her previous owner let the parents raise the chicks, and tried to handle them, but they didn't end up super tame. We've made progress so far, in that she readily steps up now and is not afraid of me. She likes when I am around in the room and when I talk to her. Also, sometimes she will preen my hair if I put her on my shoulder. But she has a definite aversion to being touched/pet, and her first instinct when my finger gets close is to hiss (unless she is stepping up so that I can take her to where she wants to go). I'm patient and totally don't want to rush her, but I would love it if she could eventually learn that my hands are useful for scritches.

So, has anyone had a bird that did not initially want to be touched come around eventually? I just want to squish her and shower her with love! lol.
 

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My very first cockatiel was a pet store bird, entirely wild and never been handled in his life other than being netted and moved around. It took a little while, but he ended up being the most cuddly bird i've ever had, that's including my hand raised babies!
 

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Wow, that's impressive! Even after being netted and presumably man-handled, he still turned sweet and cuddly. Birds are amazing.
 

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Snowball. When my hubby first got him, he emailed me (I was deployed) and told me that he was considering taking him back because he wasn't as friendly as the other bird. I told him no to keep him and give him time. When I got home, I spent every day just sitting with the birds, offering them millet. Snowball slowly warmed up to me, until he absolutely loved us. It didn't happen overnight, I would say it took probably about two months to get him to come around.
 

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Joey didn't mind us adjusting toys near him, and loved being hand fed, but had no desire to get scritches. I slowly started touching the top of his head, then moving away, then would wiggle my finger a time or two and move away. I wanted him to know I wasn't going to push it on him. After a few weeks of that, he suddenly flopped his head to the side and offered me his cheek, then about a minute later, the back of his neck. He's been a scritch junkie ever since. He still won't step up for any kind of bribery, but I feel it will come in time.

Your willingness to be patient will go a long way, and she will get there in time. I understand your desire to squish her and shower her with love. I am the same way.
 

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Snowball. When my hubby first got him, he emailed me (I was deployed) and told me that he was considering taking him back because he wasn't as friendly as the other bird. I told him no to keep him and give him time. When I got home, I spent every day just sitting with the birds, offering them millet. Snowball slowly warmed up to me, until he absolutely loved us. It didn't happen overnight, I would say it took probably about two months to get him to come around.
Joey didn't mind us adjusting toys near him, and loved being hand fed, but had no desire to get scritches. I slowly started touching the top of his head, then moving away, then would wiggle my finger a time or two and move away. I wanted him to know I wasn't going to push it on him. After a few weeks of that, he suddenly flopped his head to the side and offered me his cheek, then about a minute later, the back of his neck. He's been a scritch junkie ever since. He still won't step up for any kind of bribery, but I feel it will come in time.

Your willingness to be patient will go a long way, and she will get there in time. I understand your desire to squish her and shower her with love. I am the same way.
I love reading these types of inspiring stories! :D My girl has been with me such a short time, and already she seems to be a lot more comfortable and learning to trust me. So I'm sure it is only a matter of time.
 

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Pikachu has loved cuddles and scratches since the day I brought her home! haha But I rescued a parakeet female named Birdy and she would step up but never wanted scratches, until she got liver disease and I had to handle her a lot more. The day before she died she actually came up to me and asked for scratches. :(
 

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My boy loves cuddles so much that he asks for them even when he is angry. He protests about something, then looks at me and lowers his head and asks for scritches even while protesting
 

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Elvis was not tame at all when I got him, but has made a lot of progress. Well, he isn't cuddly. I got him this summer and he is quite old. He was scared to death by anything, especially hands. He still doesn't like being touched, but tolerates it. I only handle him when I really have to and I think we had a breakthrough last week.

Elvis needs to see the vet every three weeks and the last time I took him there he started to scream inside the bus. He knows the routine by know and hates the busride there. When we are headed home he is always happy again. So I put my hand in his travelling cage and kept stroking his sides until our stop, to keep him quiet, and he actually was okay with it. I thought he would hate me when we came home, but he has been more outside of his cage since we were at the vets, and more outgoing and singing all the time. So cuddly, no, but we are on our way there.
 

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standoffish to cuddly

It's funny you should post this just now. I was going to post something similar about my Bennie. He is bonded to me, but until recently, was not keen on physical contact. He wanted be in sight, but not necessarily in contact. It wasn't my choice, but he just didn't seem to want to be held a lot. Scritches were okay, but not for too long. I still held him every day, several times a day, but he didn't want to stay too long.In just the last 2 or 3 weeks, he started coming to me on his own. I'll be sitting in my chair (about 3 or 4 feet from his cage) and he'll climb to the side of the cage facing me and lean towards me. (His door is always open when I'm home.) I go over and pick him up and he'll sit with me for quite a while and we share sweet nothings, occasional kisses and a few skritches.. The other night he actually flew to me as I approached! I am so glad!
 

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It has been almost a week since we have Grimmjow, and at first he didn't want to step up, anything. Only biting and hissing. He still hisses sometimes but he let us touch his crest and the head. Patience and love is all you need. And millet, lots of millet jajaja
 
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