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Discussion Starter #1
Joey has always been a bit of a screecher. Goodness knows I have posted enough times asking for help. He was getting worse about it right before we went on our trip, and we chalked it up to his being spoiled, and hoped time away would adjust him. Then, the plan was, when we got back I would be more careful about things I did that spoiled him.

Since we have been home, nothing makes him happy. We are out of the room, he screeches, we are in the room, he screeches. Standing right beside him, he screeches. Talk to him, he screeches. Cover him, he screeches. Uncover him, he screeches. Ignoring him doesn't work. He only gets louder. And he doesn't want to come out of the cage, either. He just sits there with the doors open, screeching. He won't step up, but when the doors are open he knows he can come out. We gave him one of his Christmas toys early. He was happy with it for about 30 minutes, then went right back to screeching. It is big, and fabulous and expensive. Suppose mama could have had a new pair of shoes, no more interest than he has had in it.:rolleyes:

Today, I actually have the thought in my head that maybe he just isn't happy here and needs a more suitable home. He used to sing a LOT and now it is rare, because he is too busy screeching. I can't imagine life without my boy, but there is no peace in the house now. Before the trip, when the blinds were closed in the evening and the living room lamp was on, he was happy for the rest of the evening. Since we returned last Sunday, we get about an hour of peace and then he is right back to screeching.

Mom tried to keep him as close to his schedule as she could, and we don't always keep him to an exact schedule, so I don't think it could be that. We switch toys around often enough that he doesn't get bored with them. There are two he loves enough they stay all the time, the rest get traded around every week or two, from a huge stash we have.

As I mentioned above, I can't imagine life without him, but if he isn't happy here, and is going to screech to where he are always in fear of a neighbor complaining, then we have to think of what is best for him. Re-homing is not an actual idea in my head, but merely a last ditch effort thought.

Maybe I am just needing to rant, who knows. Any ideas and suggestions would be appreciated. We've tried ignoring unwanted behavior, for weeks on end, prior to the vacation. Covering until he settles doesn't seem to work as a training tool for him. We are at a loss, and frustrated, and it seems he is too. I love him so much and want him here with us, but the incessant screeching is all a bit much.
 

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I know this has been suggested already Tama, and I know you don't want to push your luck with another, but personally I think Joey would do some good with another flockmate. You could even try something quieter like a budgie. Not to be cagemates, but perhaps another bird would keep him calmer. Birds tend to do better with another bird in the flock.

I think Joey is screeching out of some form of boredom, so maybe keep another bird in mind. I know you shouldn't get a bird for a bird, but just a thought
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I would love to, but with it being a no pets allowed building, we can't get another, even quieter one, while living here. An exception was made for him because we already had him, but we can't get another while we are here. It isn't that we don't want to get another, we currently can't. We love this place, but are looking to move closer to my family, and would be looking for a house to rent so that we can have more noise. Our lease doesn't end until the end of April, so hopefully we can find another place then, and get him a friend.

Boredom had crossed my mind, even though we change his toys a lot, interact with him nearly the entire time we are home, leave the cage door open so he can come and go as he wishes, have music or tv on a lot of time, leave his radio on when we leave, etc. Hubs is currently off work and with him all day, too.
 

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Do you have any foraging toys? They'll keep my birds busy for a least an hour... and that's a lot for them. Those 2 are always up to something naughty.

Maybe that would help?

Also, a good bath helps if they're being a little too loud too. It's good for them and it keeps them quiet while they preen themselves
 

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Is his cage near something that could be frightening him? We couldn't figure out why our two babies kept freaking out at random times and finally discovered it was the fact that they could see the downstairs neighbor's flashlight when she went out to walk her dog before bed.

I completely understand your struggle though--we have a lovebird that screeches incessantly. The only time she is quiet is when she has laid eggs and is sitting on them. She is also highly aggressive so she can't be paired with another bird and has to be watched closely when she is out because she's already taken a toe off my poor Lint. We can't rehome her knowing this, but she drives us crazy with the screeching. Eventually you just kind of tune it out.

In all seriousness though, I would focus on entertaining him. Get him shreddy toys, new foods to try, and whistle back if you're in another room when he screeches. Sometimes it is anxiety related, and knowing you just recently went away and might do so again can cause stress to a solitary bird. Maybe try putting a video on that has another cockatiel whistling and see what happens? Try teaching him a new song to sing besides the screech. Our little ones were screechers when we got them and now they whistle "mana-mana" instead which is MUCH preferred (even if still slightly annoying). We also once had to use a stuffed animal in a cage with a bird that was in quarantine and it seemed to help ease some anxiety. If you can't get another flockmate, my first thought would be to pay extra attention to him, not less!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the suggestions. He has a couple foraging toys, and lots of shreddy toys. He is due a bath, and will get it tomorrow. Time escaped me today, and I suppose we could turn the heat up for a bit, but I want to deep clean the cage while I am at it, so an earlier start would be better.

Not long after I posted, he decided to come out for a bit of a fly around, put himself back in his cage and had a nap, then has been happy as can be since. He's also been happily playing with his new toy off and on since. Fingers crossed he will come out again tomorrow and hereafter.

I did wonder if it was anxiety that we might leave again, or maybe that he misses his grandma since she was here for 2 1/2 weeks. He is pretty close to mom, so after an extended time together he may be calling out for her.

Hubs whistles back and forth with him whether in the room with him or not. Even when we are watching tv or a movie, they are whistling to each other. I am not talented with whistling, so our flock call is to call out 'peekaboo' to each other. I've heard neighbors pause outside the door to listen. Makes me giggle every time. He whistles a few short tune, and has a pretty decent vocabulary or words and phrases, including 'pretty boy' which we didn't teach him and have no clue where he learned it. We do try to distract him by getting him to whistle or talk. Sometimes, much like a toddler, birds just won't be distracted.

I can't think of anything near his cage that might be causing stress. We try to keep the blinds open to let in light but usually with the slats at a slight angle to prevent anything outside from scaring him.

I don't think I could rehome him, only if I knew it would be best for him. I would rather wait it out until we get another place where we can get him a sibling. I do love my boy a LOT. I was just feeling a bit overwhelmed this morning, but this chance to talk it all out has helped immensely.
 
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