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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody,

I recently got a beautiful cockatiel from a friend at school just over a week ago now and I'm not sure if he's been getting a proper amount of sleep since he's arrived at his new home. His name's Smokey and my friend said he's seven years old and is turning eight this year.

I put Smokey to bed at 8:30 PM or 9:00 PM, but I'm a night owl, so I watch TV out in the living room for an hour or half an hour until I'm tired. When I come down the hallway and go into my bedroom as silently as I possibly can to get myself into bed, he's wide awake staring at the doorway as if to wait for me! So, I started watching YouTube in my bedroom so he knows I'm in the room with him, but he just walks around his cage eating and chirping and continues well after I try to go to sleep.

I've tried EVERYTHING to make bed time for him as stress free as possible, but with two inside cats, it's not so easy. I cover his cage at night, one corner not covered and a night light is on across the other side of the room so it's not so overly bright. You can only just see inside the cage, but he seems to be able to navigate fine. I use an extra big cover for his cage that drapes down the sides, so my family's sneaky felines can't nip at his tail as easily. If anything is keeping Smokey up, it's our cats, but due to house rules, I'm not allowed to shut my bedroom door at night, so there's nothing to keep them out of my room.

During the week days while I'm at school, he's home alone in my bedroom where he can be away from the cats who can possibly be dangerous without someone there to look out for Smokey. Could he be getting most of his sleep during the day and that's why he doesn't sleep much at night?

I just need reassurance that he's fine or that because he's staying up past when I go to sleep, it's wrong and I need to do something about his sleeping habits.
 

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It does sound to me like he's turning into a night owl like you. Kirby has a similar problem; when we first adopted him he napped almost constantly during the day, and wouldn't go to sleep at night. We'd started covering his cage, which helped, but then when I moved his cage into my room he began having a little "bedtime freakout" for a few minutes where he would climb all over his cage, eat, chirp, etc until he settled down. When we increased his activity level during the day, however, it got much better. I think your bird is fine; it just seems like his sleep schedule is off.

Here's what I'd suggest:
1. You can set up some kind of block so that your cats can't get into your room, like so

That is homemade from wire closet shelves! You can also buy dog/kid gates, just make sure that they are tall enough to keep the cat from simply jumping over

2. In order to help fix his sleep schedule, I'd suggest that once you get home from school/martial arts, pay LOTS of attention to him and make him get a lot of exercise. Some great forms of exercise can be: wing exercises, if your bird dances than you can encourage that, encouraged flight (if they can fly), having them cross a surface to get to a treat, etc. Mental stimulation can also help tire them out, so you could work on teaching them tricks about an hour before bedtime to get them nice and tired out.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for the quick reply! I'll defiantly try out your suggestions.

I'm hopeful they'll work :)
 
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