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Teaching An Old Bird New Tricks?

Discussion in 'Training' started by Keibra, Jan 23, 2018.

  1. Michael Reynolds

    Michael Reynolds Regular Member

    Good news on the bloods
     
    Keibra likes this.
  2. Keibra

    Keibra Regular Member Registered

    I will keep trying. He was sorry after and wanted a head scratch. It was my fault for not holding him in the towel properly
     
  3. Michael Reynolds

    Michael Reynolds Regular Member

    holding the head still I find easy but I do have long fingers and quite a lot of experience but even I can have difficaulty with the stronger birds in my flock like Buster a greater sulphur crested Too and the large Macaws
     
    Keibra likes this.
  4. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Have answered on your other post about the pellet diet.

    Amazons need a good source of beta carotene/ Vitamin a in the diet...so veggies like sweet potato, carrot, red pepper, butternut squash, and then cantaloupe melon, mango.

    I know how difficult it is holding birdies head still enough to get eye drops in. Did the Vet show you how to hold the bird in the towel...if there are two of you perhaps one can hold and the other can drop the drop?
     
  5. Keibra

    Keibra Regular Member Registered

    nope - she had trouble holding him he got free and flew into the window the first appointment - that's why he was knocked out to look at his eye. its like i havent even had him a month yet and she wants me to do this lol Still i shall persevere and if need be buy a falconers glove haha
     
  6. plumsmum

    plumsmum Regular Member Registered

    I wonder if @Roz can give some tips?

    I was wondering if trying to keep the syringe out of sight and bring it from behind rather than approaching from the front?
     
    Keibra likes this.
  7. Keibra

    Keibra Regular Member Registered

    thats how we try to towel him lol its a dropper bottle so not that easy
     
  8. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Oh those dropper bottles are really hard.....keep persevering...I know from experience how difficult it is xx
     
  9. Michael Reynolds

    Michael Reynolds Regular Member

    Parrots have great all round vision and it would not help approaching from behind and it is most likely the worst approach as looking at it from the parrots natural instincts predators attack mainly from behind. I find approaching the eye from the front and keeping a finger on his top beak to the side of what eye you are treating is the best way just in case he dose manage move his head your finger of the hand that is holding the dropper will move with the head and there is less chance of accidently poking the eye. if you are holding you bird correctly it would not be able to bite.
     
    plumsmum likes this.
  10. Michael Reynolds

    Michael Reynolds Regular Member

    one thing I must mention when holding any bird no pressure should be put on the breast at any time I thought I was best to mention thin so others can see the advice and did not realise.
     
    plumsmum likes this.
  11. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    I can hold a bird correctly.....but the wriggling Head factor means that they wriggle loose and bite...birds always bah ve better for the Vet than their owner in my experience, and it takes you to be confident to be able to administer to them. I failed miserable doing a nasal flush, even though it had been demonstrated by the Vet...just try and do your best.
     
  12. Roz

    Roz Regular Member

    That's great he wanted a head scratch from you after you toweled him. He must trust you a lot already!

    Thanks for the tag, Plumsmum. Here's an alternative way to toweling if you want to try it:

    You could try shaping the behaviour you want to see, which is Lucky's relaxed body language whilst you put the eye dropper near to his eye and then drip one drop in. You'd break this down into tiny steps. You will need a reinforcer to reward each of these steps. Does Lucky like any particular treats (if you can break these treats into very small pieces you will be able to get many reps in), or maybe a head scratch, or maybe quick access to a favourite toy?

    The steps might go something like this. Just for ease I'm going to use praise and treats as the reinforcers:

    1. Lucky looks at dropper bottle. Praise and treat!
    2. Lucky shows relaxed body language (RBL) whilst Keibra brings the dropper bottle an inch closer. Praise and treat!
    3. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle an inch closer. Praise and treat!
    4. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle slightly closer still. Praise and treat!
    5. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle even closer. Praise and treat!
    6. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle a centimeter towards his head. Praise and treat!
    7. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle a centimeter closer. Praise and treat!
    8. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings dropper bottle closer to his eye. Praise and treat!
    9. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra tips bottle slightly near his eye. Praise and treat!
    10. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra tips bottle further near his eye. Praise and treat!
    11. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra brings tipped bottle closer to his eye. Praise and treat!
    12. Lucky shows RBL whilst Keibra squeezes one drop into his eye. PRAISE and BIG TREAT!

    If Lucky fails any step, then go back to the last successful one and repeat it. Then break the next steps down even smaller. Keep training sessions very short - maybe 30 seconds here and there through the day and always end on a successful step (which is why you should stop sooner rather than later). You may only reach Step 3 in the first session and that's fine. Next session you might reach Step 4 or 5. As the sessions become more familiar to him, you'll find yourself missing out some of the steps as Lucky begins to know what to expect.

    That's how I trained Ollie (Amazon) who was untame at that point to let me cut his toenails. It was successful despite his fear of hands. For Ollie I used praise and tiny pieces of cashew nut (his favourite treat!).
     
    dianaT likes this.
  13. Roz

    Roz Regular Member

    Or shape his relaxed body language towards you putting a finger and thumb around the eye so that you can dispense the drops.