Posted Jul 12, 2014
We named our cockatiel Elvis because of his pompadour feathers. It is a very strange story, how we came to have this bird. One Sunday as we exited our church building, which was in a neighborhood among a lot of nice houses, we saw this cockatiel flying randomly around the parking lot. We assume he was released by an owner who lived nearby. A sweet old man named Roger, a longtime friend of my family who loves animals, asked my dad to catch the bird (we assumed so that Roger would take him in). My dad grew up owning pigeons and knows how to handle birds. So he caught him, but then Roger said, "I can't take him; I have cats." That's how we got stuck with Elvis.
I never felt any attachment to the bird. His temperament was unpleasant, to put it mildly. From the first day we had him, he scratched my dad's hands all up and squawked like crazy. You couldn't get too close to him, because he would hiss nastily and would bite your finger if he could reach it. He would randomly shriek for long periods of time on any given day, which drove us crazy. Our yellow Lab sniffed him curiously but seemed afraid of him. He hissed at the dog, too.
I would not recommend getting a cockatiel, but maybe Elvis had been previously abused. They are loud, so if you like a quiet pet, they are probably not for you.