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Vannah is getting attached


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4We have had Vannah 3 weeks now, and she is settling in ok. She allows me to pick her up off of her cage occasionally, and from the floor any time. I can put her food in her cage without nips, and she knows when to go inside at night. She won't always allow me to put her in the cage at night. She also enjoys sitting with me and getting her head scratched. She's willinging to try a new perch too as long as I don't leave her on it.

Here's the problem... she won't do any of this for my husband. In her previous home her favorite in the house was a man, and his wife was tolerated, but was not liked. On Vannah's first night here she didn't want to go in her cage, so my husband tried to make her (without success). I feel like this might be part of his problem. Now when Vannah and I are cuddling he will try to come in and pet her or pick her up from me. He will also try to do something with her that she generally does with me.  She doesn't like that either. Now she has changed her willingness to do things with me when he is around. She will give him "kisses" though.

We need her to be at least compliant with stepping up for him and allowing him to feed her. How do you think we should go about this? We don't want him to become completely alienated from her. His solution is to be firm about his requests and continue until she complies. He isn't mean, but you can tell she isn't happy about it. I think there is probably a better way. Is it possible that her initial bedtime experience is causing this? Will she forgive him?

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Greys are quirky. Once they bond with a human, they oftentimes don't want anything to do with anyone else. It's something that he may have to accept over time, but for now it's too early to know.

I'd suggest that he do more talking and treating rather than actual physical touching until she relaxes around him. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 7/25/2020 at 3:41 PM, Greytness said:

Greys are quirky. Once they bond with a human, they oftentimes don't want anything to do with anyone else. It's something that he may have to accept over time, but for now it's too early to know.

I'd suggest that he do more talking and treating rather than actual physical touching until she relaxes around him. 

Well,  I think I have convinced him not to try so hard. She's accepting treats, but not really tolerating him getting too close. I shared this info with him, and he wasn't all that excited of course. I remind him that I have been living this role with one of our other birds for 19 years, and this might just be the way it is. 😉 I hope he'll eventually get over it if she doesn't warm up. He's the one that really wanted a grey. 

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It could definitely change over time. One of my greys who was rehomed to me at the tender age of 3.5 months was a little cuddler with me for the first month. Then I made the mistake of allowing his first owner to come visit him as he was having a difficult time letting go. During that visit Fynn nipped me for the first time, and from that moment on he wouldn't have anything to do with me. I know now that it was a mistake having his first owner come over, because this little smarty pants put 2 and 2 together that I was the evil one who'd removed him from his first home.

Fast forward to today, 2 years later: Fynn allows me to scritch him through the cage bars and occasionally flies over to me, but he remains cautious of me. My daughter became his chosen one soon after his first owner's visit, so he gets plenty of love and attention. I've accepted Fynn's choice of people 100%, and believe that eventually he'll allow me to freely interact with him.

I also have a Panama Amazon who, from day one, chose my sons as his favorites. Both sons have since left the house, and now, 7 years later, he will freely step up for me. Point I'm trying to make is that it takes time. Lots and lots of time plus a huge dose of patience to establish a relationship with a bird that's clearly chosen another as his favorite. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Alfie chose my housemate as his favourite after years of me being the favourite. Unfortunately there's not a lot you can do.

My housemate moved out a few months ago but still comes to visit. He can instantly give Alfie scritches whereas I still can't- despite always being the main caregiver, food bringer etc etc etc. Unfrotunately you just have to roll with it.

I would recommend looking up birdtricks on youtiube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1BpMn4ErGPo8XB3Rzltojg they are parrot trainers and have loads of useful videos on their channel which may help you.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Update: Today is Vannah's 2 month move-in anniversary. I am clearly her favorite now, and she is still barely tolerating my husband. She allows me to do most anything including the "fall over" routine she did at her previous home for nail clipping. She also comes out with me at the end of the day for quiet snuggle just before the lights go out. I love that time :). Cory tries to nudge in sometimes and he is clearly unwelcome from her point of view. 

My husband continues to try and get her to like him. He gives her treats, feeds her, and due to him being on medical leave right now, stays home with her all day while I go to work. I remind him regularly not to be pushy or forceful so a bad relationship doesn't develop. I also told him about the experiences you all shared. I just don't want him to push her totally away.

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I was wondering how things have been going with Vannah and you guys!

It may take months, if not years, for her to 'tolerate' your husband. Our youngest gray tolerates me, even though I've been trying to win him over for 2 years now. We're definitely making progress, albeit slow! But it's progress. I accept whatever bond he's willing to make with me, even though I wish it were more. He's a one person bird, choosing my daughter as his 'one and only'.

 

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Timber tolerates my husband as well. They have a relationship, just not like the relationship I have with him. More like sibling rivalry, ha. I think Timber resents any attention I give hubby as attention that should be directed at him, but if I'm out and about Timber is perfectly willing to let hubby feed him, change his papers, and do the scut work. He will also whistle for him and, occasionally, call him asshole ;)

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well Monday will be 3 months with Vannah. A couple weeks ago my husband started waiting for her to climb down off her cage, which was the only time he could pick her up. He picked her up like normal, but started taking her into the bathroom (stool covered of course) and negan routine training with her on stepping up. Though she knew how, she wouldn't do it for him unless she was on the floor. It took about a week, and now she will come off the cage for him. We are both a bit relieved because he'd have to wait to go anywhere until I was home of Vannah got hungry and went inside. We were worried about this for emergencies too.

She still doesn't like him, but her level of tolerance is growing.

With me, she will do anything. For only having her 3 month I am shocked at how well she's adjusted. She lets me put new things in her cage, she lets me pick her up like a football if I need to, and she will try anything I ask her to. I didn't expect this kind of trust so soon.

20200921_211527.jpg

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So glad to see there has been some progress and success with your husband and Vannah's relationship!

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