Birds are valued family members, and they love being part of any activity. Involve your bird on Christmas morning by giving him his very own gift. This list has three suggestions for presents to please every type of bird, from parakeets to parrots.
Birds are extremely intelligent animals. Even smaller species, like parakeets, are smart and need a stimulating environment. Larger birds, like parrots, macaws, and cockatoos, are as smart as a toddler, and they need enrichment to keep them happy and healthy.
You should give your bird toys all year 'round, but Christmas is a great time to buy some special playthings as a gift. I have a Quaker parrot, Truman, and he loves to explore (and destroy) new toys. I make sure his cage is always stocked with a wide variety of objects to preen, chew, and tear apart.
One of Truman's favorite toys is the Jungle Talk Lots of Legs Activity Toy. It has wood on which he can exercise his beak and rope that he likes to pull and preen. My previous bird was a cockatiel, so his favorite stocking stuffer was anything made of wood.
Some birds enjoy mirrored toys, while others like spinners they can move around or bells that make lots of noise. Use Christmas as an opportunity to try out something new for your avian friend.
If you happen to have a Quaker parrot, consider offering some building materials as a Christmas gift or at any time of the year. Some Quakers love to build, and they'll use wood sticks or plastic straws to construct elaborate structures in or on their cages.
Truman is a builder, but he uses his Happy Hut as the frame. I buy wood skewers at the store, and he props him up against the entrance to his hut until he has a nice, semi-solid wall.
Birds enjoy treats just like most other pets, and you can buy a wide variety of avian goodies online and in pet stores.
Truman's favorite treat is Nutri-Berries. They come in a variety of different flavors, including fruit, nut, and even popcorn varieties.
Truman is also a big fan of Roundybush Rice Treats. They're very plain looking little pieces, but he goes absolutely crazy for them.
If you stuff your bird's Christmas stocking with treats, hand them out sparingly. Many treats aren't healthy in large quantities, and they'll make your bird turn his beak up at his healthy pellet diet or fresh fruits and vegetables.
Make your bird work for his Christmas goodies. Ask him to do a behavior and give him a treat as a reward.
I'm a firm believer that birds need time outside of their cages for optimum health and happiness. Truman's cage is open whenever I'm at home, and he's allowed free run of the house (bird diapers help cut down on the mess).
Some birds like to fly around the house, while others prefer to stick close to their cages. Some can't fly if you keep their wings clipped.
Homebody birds will appreciate a play gym for Christmas. A typical gym is too large to fit in a Christmas stocking, so slip it under the tree.
Play gyms generally come in wood or plastic varieties. My cockatiel was a chewer, so he loved wood sets like the Acrobird Play Gym. Truman prefers a lot of things to play with, so I usually get him a Feathered Fun Desktop Activity Center.
Most birds destroy their gyms, which make them good annual presents. Christmas is a great time to replace your feathered friend's play spot.