Acquired: Pet store
Posted Nov 01, 2014
So, you're looking for a pet for you or your children that you believe will be low maintenance and easy to take care of. Before you settle on a Cockatiel, let me share a few thoughts on this topic.
1. I went to the pet store to purchase a Cockatiel for my children. Note, I said "a" Cockatiel, singular, as in one. I was told they are very social and would only thrive if they had a mate or another Cockatiel for company. Being concerned for its welfare, naturally, I bought two. What's one more little bird, I thought. I soon learned one more bird means double the poo, double the mess, and double the noise. I envisioned a sweet little bird that would perch on a limb and sing beautiful little tunes all day. What I got was a bird that chirps and squawks incessantly and hates people.
2. Pete did fairly well with his first companion, Patricia. She seemed to calm him and he was a little more tolerant of people when she was around. The two of them were almost inseparable (so I thought). This is probably a good time to mention that if you don't keep their wings clipped, it's not a good idea to leave a door open. After Patricia left so abruptly, Pete seemed very depressed. So, we decided to go back to the pet store and purchase a new friend for him. Conway Tweety was a sweet bird with beautiful colors and markings. He was people-friendly and got along well with the other birds at the pet store. But, once we got home and put him with Pete, it was like a turf war broke out. Poor Conway spent most of his time dodging and running from Pete, who was determined to shoo him away for good. And, how do you teach a bird not to bully? We finally had to find a new home for Conway. In the meantime, Pete still pines for Patricia and is as anti-social as ever.
3. Clean freaks beware! I thought birds would be semi-clean apart from a little poo in their cages. Not even close. I still can't figure out how Pete can get poo 20 feet away on the sofa when he can't fly and spends most of his time on the top of his cage. If anyone knows the answer to that mystery, please share.
I hope this helps anyone considering whether a Cockatiel is the right pet for them. If I had to do it again, well, let's just say I wouldn't.