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Potty Training & Biting


Hmlew
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Hi! New here and glad to have a place to go to for info since we're first time bird owners. Lulu is 5 months old and doing well. She's currently trying to talk, exploring the house and knows how to step up. Our only problem right now is that she's pooping wherever she feels like and we're constantly having to clean up after her. Does anyone know of a way to potty train her? Also, she doesn't care for one of our daughters and tries to bite her every time she tries to pick her up, even after she gives her a snack. How do we keep her from biting or do Greys just not prefer some people? 

 

Thanks a bunch! 

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Hello and welcome! I have nothing to say about potty training, since my bird is about 15 years old and still goes where he wants. However, in my experience, greys usually have a "favored" person (which may change over time). As for others, they do seem to have definite preferences and dislikes. Even so, they will usually develop some sort of relationship with everyone in the household they have regular exposure to. If your daughter keeps working on it and builds trust, their relationship will probably improve with time. The short answer is, yes they do have definite preferences and likes and dislikes with individuals.

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So cute! I'm not sure about the potty training part. I always have paper below my birds so that when they give that 'ready to poop' look I hold them over the paper to go. 

Greys definitely do have their favorite people. She's still pretty young, so my advice is to have your daughter not try to hold her for now, but to spend time near her cage talking softly and singing to her, and giving her treats through the bar. 

 

And welcome!

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All mine would go on demand with me saying "Be a good bird."  I truly regretted that training and stopped saying it. 

Usually you can tell when your parrot needs to go (subtle little signs they give) and you can just position them over some paper. 

Accidents: It's not the worst cleanup ever -- in fact, over carpet (forgive me) but you can let it dry and then scrape the end of the vacuum pipe over the carpet-stuck-poop to lift it and voila!  (it's the same trick for cat hair balls).  Dry IS easier.  Please -- no hate!  lol

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I can't give much advice about potty training as I've never tried it. I have read that some people have had difficulties where their bird will try and hold it in until given the command to go though, which can be bad for them. However it's easy enough to clean up. You can put paper under playstands etc to catch most of it.

They do tend to have their favourites and will interact with people in different ways. If she is biting your daughter then I would get her to take a step back for a while. Get her to read stories to him and interact from a distance for a short while. You could also try introducing some training and get your daughter to provide the best/favourite rewards. Target training is probably the easiest one to start with- where the bird touches the end of a stick on command and gets a reward for it. (It has to be a gentle touch, not a bite). 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Years ago, I had read some information about a parrot owner who so strictly "potty trained" their parrot [I don't think it was a Grey] that it died because it had been out of it's cage so long and hadn't been given the command to "potty" in a humane time period.  I can hardly believe that someone just made this story up but who knows?

One thing we did with Corey was to train her with the request:   Go Potty.  We did this by saying Go Potty whenever we saw her doing the "potty dance" and then rewarding her [when she went potty] by saying:  Good Bird!  The way that this helps us is that when we take her to any place in our house where we can't easily clean up a potty, first we take her to her cage [or any other place where she is comfortable going potty] and ask her:  Go Potty.  Often, she will go potty for us and then we know we have around 15 minutes where we know we are probably safe.  If she doesn't go potty when we ask, it's not a big deal.  We don't press the issue.   It's not a perfect solution but it's something. 

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

You can’t potty train a parrot with any success. I do have one of my parrots that won’t go potty in her sleep cage, I take her out and she will go in her potty basket we call it, but that’s it, after that it’s a free for all!  Trying to potty train a parrot with wild instincts will be successful at stressing them out and you may end up with a frustrated plucker. Having a parrot means cleaning up their potty everywhere. It comes with the territory. I have 3 and they get to spend all day out when I’m not at work. Before I go to bed at night, my nighttime chore is to go to all the favorite places and clean it up.  They are like a dog, they will go where they want. You will get so you know when they are going to do it, but as far as training, that’s not feasible , in my opinion, or good for them.

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We chose not to try to potty train Her Royal Highness Inara due to the health and safety issues listed above by other members. Like, terryspear, though, I did teach HRH Inara the word potty by using it every time she would poop when she was little. I would also make a raspberry noise which she began to associate with it as well. She now uses this sound as a "swear word." hahaha She also one day while on my shoulder peering into the fridge saw a container of humus and made the sound. Cracked me up!! 

Whenever she wants to go out of her cage (she asks to go places like the tree, or the big chair, or to see the squirrels, or to the big shower), she will climb up onto the top of the open door and then drop a potty (I have a paper underneath it on the floor) and then is ready to go roaming/flying. If I would like to be on the safer side, I will say, "Potty please," if she's just dancing around on the door and I wait and she will drop then we go. I don't consider this "potty training" in the sense of only have a bird drop in one place only. This is just a reminder to her to get her business done so we can go to her other fun areas. 

I keep movable perches in her favorite spots in the house where she likes to hang out and this also makes for easy clean up. In her very favorite spot, she has a rolling perch with a tray several inches under the wooden perch. I give this a light spray with PAM olive oil and it makes it super easy to clean up and is harmless to her. 

First rule of Bird Club? -- poop happens. :)

 

PS -- what a gorgeous baby you have! 

 

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