a simple list of things to consider when buying a cage for your pet bird.
|When choosing the best cage for your pet bird there are several things to consider. The size and material the cage is made of is an important factor. Other things that need to be considered are bar spacing, perches, food dishes, ease of cleaning, and the shape of the cage.
Size and material.
It needs to be large enough for your bird to spread its wings and flap without touching
the sides of the cage. Recommended cage sizes can be found at http://exoticpets.about.com/od/cagesperchesplaygyms/l/blcagesizes.htm. Cages made of metal are best. Wicker and bamboo are great for decorating but not as a home for your bird. A parrot will chew through the bars quickly and the cage cannot be sterilized like metal.
Arrange perches so the bird's tail feathers don't get ruffled. Wood or plastic are the best materials. Tree branches provide a natural environment. For natural branches, choose from edible trees like maple, ash, fruit or nut trees. Clean well but do not use anything that might possibly have been sprayed or have excessive sap. PCV pipe is excellent. Avoid any fabric, carpet, or rubber perch coverings. Sandpaper covered does not help keep the nails trimmed and causes foot problems.
Some cages have doors that are almost as large as the front of the cage, while others have doors that are just not large enough. Make sure access is easy. Also, in some cases you may want to get a cage where a lock is possible. I had a pair of lovebirds that figured out how to get out of their cage, the problem was, they didn't know how to get back in. One would hold the cage door up while the other would stand under it. The first one would then join the second one half way out of the door, then they both would take off flying. Eventually, I had to buy small locks to lock them in while I was away.
Removable bottom tray.
This makes it easier for cleaning. Cage paper is usually applied to the bottom tray. I have always used old newspapers. When I purchased my first bird I was told that grit or gravel should be put on the bottom. Fortunately, I was too cheap to pay for it because my veterinarian told me birds (especially parakeets) tend to eat the gravel and grit, it packs in the crop and the bird usually dies.
Food and Water bowls.
Most cages I have seen anyway, the food and water bowls are too small. I like the stainless steel bowls that attach to the sides or front of the cages. Stainless steel can be sterilized and it doesn't stain and crack. I had to buy bowls that locked when I got a collie because my amazon parrot would throw her bowls at my collie.
Rectangular cages are preferred. Birds move back and forth rather than up and down so tall narrow cages aren't as preferred as rectangular.
Bar spacing is important.
The bars need to be spaced so that the bird cannot get its head between the bars.
Never buy a cage that has been painted. Parrots especially like to chew and as the paint peels the parrot ends up eating the paint chips. Anodized finishes are good because the color is electronically applied.
Birds sleep best in the dark. By covering the cage you are not only providing the darkness
they require but it provides a sense of security. Your bird will be spending a lot of time in and around their cage. Pet birds become attached to their cages, it is their home. Therefore, it's a place where they need to feel safe and comfortable.
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