Acquired: Worked with pet (didn’t own)
Texas, United States
Posted Mar 30, 2013
I will start off my review off cockatiels by stating that I have never been fortunate to keep one as a pet myself. I worked with a board certified avian veterinarian for 2 years as her technician. During my work with this vet, I have handled and treated numerous cockatiels in a hospital setting. My experience with them is not based off of keeping them as pets.
Every cockatiel is different. Some are mean and some are so sweet and friendly. This has to do with the amount of socialization and training they've received from their owners. Some were also just mean to us because they didn't like being in the hospital, but who can blame them for that. Most of the time, they were very loving and caring to their people and would also let us hold and pet them. They are very intelligent birds who can be easily trained.
One thing I personally am not super fond of with cockatiels is how noisy they are. They are very vocal birds! They can learn whistles and other noises/words, but they like to make lots of noise.
They are relatively healthy birds, as long as they are given a proper diet and care. Most of the health-issues we see in cockatiels at the vet hospital are due to poor diet. Cockatiels can be huge seed junkies. They should eat a diet or preferably pellets with a little bit of seeds. A seed-only diet is less than ideal and very unhealthy for cockatiels, or any bird really.
Of course, as with any other bird, they can be messy so be prepared to clean up after them! Some can live for 20 years so also make sure you're ready to commit to them.
I would recommend them as great pets for first time bird owners as well as long time bird owners.