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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, it's Ms. Paranoid Mommy again. :blush: I knew this was gonna happen so it was not even a surprise to me...

I was off work and playing with Sunny all day at home yesterday because it was his first day at my home and I wanted him to feel welcome and loved. (I am aware that cockatiels prefer stability and predictability so you shouldn't play with him for hours one day then leave him alone the next.) Well guess what, that one day did it. This morning I went back to work so I said good-bye and wheeled his cage out to the livingroom. My dad said he was chirping really loudly all day, obviously wondering where mommy was. When I came home tonight, he was so mad at me and he really showed it. I tried to get him to step-up but he kept walking away from me, playing with everything in his cage except look at me. This was his way of showing me "see, I don't need you either. I have tons of things to play with in my cage and I'm perfectly happy playing on my own! So there!!!" So I left him alone and went showering. I didn't want to immediately start cuddling him because I didn't want to reward him for throwing a tantrum. :eek: I walked by his cage a few times before I went to shower and he kept pretending he didn't care about me but he actually kept looking at me sideways, hoping I'd pay attention to him, and trying not to be obvious about it. When I came out of the shower I heard him chirping loudly, as if saying "hey, how come no one pays attention to me? Why doesn't mommy come to cuddle me now that I'm throwing a tantrum? Doesn't anyone care?" So finally I wheeled him inside my room and reprimanded him for throwing such a tantrum and finally I cuddled him and spoke softly to him. He was still a little mad and pretended he wanted to bit me. Then when I offered him a Cheerio he did not take it right away. Finally he decided he wanted to make up so he started eating the Cheerio, all the while making little "radio-static" noises (similar to what unweaned cockatiels make when they beg for food) like a crying child who was neglected by mommy and finally decided to forgive her. What a bird! :blink:Then I let him out on his playgym on top of the cage and left him alone to play by himself and went about doing my own things. It was only about 20 minutes. When I wanted to pick him up to take him to the livingroom, he was mad at me again! Oh my God. :wacko: What a spoiled little brat. He'd just have to learn that mommy has to work in the daytime and he'd just have to entertain himself while I'm gone. He can't be mad at me twice every night! I knew this little guy was too smart to handle at the very beginning....cockatiel experts please advise on what I should do as to teach him to be more independent and to not spoil him further! :confused:
 

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Yeh for handreared Tiels.
You may have to think a play mate, if left for hours on end.
Handreared can be demanding. It is still early days, so I would not worry that much just yet. See how he settles in a few weeks.
I am lucky I have not had this problem, as my Tiels are not handreared.
I do know the Lady at the rescue dislikes handreaed birds in general, as they are so dependant on their owners to take care of them all the time.
As I said I would not stress at this point in time, he may well settle.
And you well might be right about the experts tell you to be consistant, But I try to keep my birds guessing I come and go at all hours. The most consistant thing in their lives is that it gets light in the morning and goes dark at night.
Tweety used to entertain herself if I was away all day. i did have to spend 3days away and organised for someone to check on her at least daily, but she did not eat very much that I could see in those 3days, so yes she had become dependant on me being around.
And to finish, I think it is a good thing that he feels comfortable enough to show you his feelings.
Good Luck.
 

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I think its a great sign that he is so active seeing as you've only had him for a little amount of time! The fact that he is happy to express his feelings (whether that be happy or somewhat naughty) seems like a good thing to me :D I remember how quiet my two were the first week or so. Give him a bit more time and he might settle in more and understand the household routine. Sounds like you have a bird with attitude though! Good luck! hehehe
 

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handreared tiels do bond with their owners. As a general rule tho it isn't the hand reared tiels fault. Birds are flock animals. If you spend all that time with him then leave him alone all day its going to cause problems. Only handle and play with him the amount of time you can realistically spend with him on a normal day. Since this was only one day if you are strict with it and dont react to his behaviour by giving him what he wants he will get over it and learn to do other things. If the amount of time a day you can spend with him is short or you feel he would benefit from a relationship with another tiel, by all means get one. But also remember it's twice the work and as they are hand reared and not aviary birds with plenty of space to fly, they still need time out of the cage and human interaction. Hand reared or raised birds are the most wonderful pets. Nothing (for me) compares to the trust and love those tiny birds put into us huge humans. You just need to remember you are his mother. You have to teach him the way to behave and set the schedule so he knows what will be done and when it will be done. Otherwise you will have an unhappy, cranky, naughty tiel. Just make sure you limit play and interaction time per day to how much you you can spend on a normal day. Even if your home all weekend don't get him out. He will expect it during the week and will end up screaming etc for your attention!
 

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The most important thing you can do for a new bird, especially a newly weaned one, is teach them to be independent. When we first got our two, we set them up with their cage, and toys, then left them alone for most of the evening to settle. The next day (Saturday) we took them out for half an hour every couple of hours, and repeated this on Sunday. On Monday, we fed them in the morning, then they were left alone until I got home from work, and they came out for half an hour again, then back in and came out again later. They only came out when they weren't making a fuss, and never for a very long period of time. While we had them out, as well as handling them, and building trust, we also encouraged them to play with toys out of the cage, both with us, and by themselves. Gradually we lengthened the time they came out for after work and at the weekends, and got them into a routine.

It's worked really well for us. Our birds are independent, and will play by themselves in their cage, even if we're in the room - just making little chirps occasionally to let us know they're there. And when they come out, they'll sit quietly with us, or they can be put on the floor or table to play with toys by themselves if we're busy.

The problem that so many young birds have, is that for the first few months their owners are always with them as much as possible and interacting with them, but as they get busy and things get in the way, they don't always get the same amount of attention and develop behavioural problems. A huge number of birds don't know how to play, often because they've never been taught to. Before we got our 'tiels, I did a lot of research, and most behavioural problems that all companion parrots have, not just 'tiels, are a result of lack of stimulation, lack of independence, and too much attention in the first few weeks/months in a new home, which drops off. So when we got our two - we got two because we're out of the house about nine hours a day, and we're lucky that our two have bonded to us, not each other, and would rather spend time with us, but still have each other for companionship - I made up some ground rules, and made sure we stuck to them. It might sound a bit harsh, but now we have two happy well adjusted birds, who play by themselves, but love to cuddle with us, and can take irregular changes in their stride with no problem - like a weeks holiday in two different houses, and an eight hour drive each way.

In the wild, or in an aviary, their parents and flock will teach them independence and how to behave. In our homes, we take the place of those parents and we are their flock, so it's up to us to take the responsibility to teach them independence and how to behave, as well as the responsibility to care for them physically. :)
 

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my spike did the exact same thing even if i was home he would screech continuosly i even video taped it it see how long he would do it for ... but the best thing to do tht i learned is too not go to too him wen he does becasue you are rewarding it when spike would screech i would whistle back just too let him kno tht i was still there but never went to the cage until he was quiet well good luck lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you all for your thoughtful and detailed advice. I will post a photo of Sunny soon so that everyone can see what His spoiled little Royal Highness looks like :D

Kimmi: Can't believe you have TEN tiels.:wacko: How do you ever manage? I only have one and he's already a handful.

Clawnz: So sorry you lost Tweety....:(
 
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