If you are considering a pet bird for your children there a number of things to take into consideration before you go out and commit to buying a new feathered friend. One of the key things to think about when choosing a bird is whether your child will be patient enough to handle it gently, or if they’d be better off with a bird that doesn’t require any handling.
Birds don’t like quick movements, loud noises or grabby hands – they will perceive this kind of behaviour as a threat and could bite or fly off so children who are loud and energetic would probably not work well with a bird that needs regular handling.
However, there are many birds which make great first pets for children – particularly if they are having grown-up support when it comes to looking after their new friend on a daily basis. For proper guidance we turned to the experts and asked our friends from Littlepeckers.co.uk to give some pro tips on selecting the best pet birds for your kids.
These birds don’t come out of their cages so are perfect for younger children or those who won’t handle a child very well. They can live alone and only need food, water and to be kept clean but don’t like to be played with or handled. They will provide entertainment by their singing and can live a long life.
Finches live in pairs and need a large cage to fly around in but again, don’t require any kind of human social interaction. They just need to be fed, watered and kept clean and can live happily and together for around seven years.
These birds can make great pets for children who do like to handle birds and are gentle and patient as they can be easily tamed and even taught to talk in time. They are not loud so can be kept in a child’s bedroom.
They love to play so need toys and do need social time with you so are great for calmer, quiet children and actually make great companions. They will also need toys and things to play with inside their cage.
Lovebirds are small parrots and can be a more challenging type of pet as they need a lot of interaction and care and can live up to around 20 years. They need lots of toys and play things in their cage and will need one on one time outside the cage as well so are probably better suited to older children.
Cockatiels make great pets as they are affectionate and need lots of one-to-one time with their owners. They can learn to talk and can be tamed with patience. These birds can live for 30 years making them long-lasting pets and lifelong companions.
They need large cages with a lot of room, toys and perches to keep them entertained and they need cleaning and feeding every single day so make great pals but also need patience and hard work.
These are very small parrots but with fierce little personalities so better suited to older children. They need to be kept fed, watered and cleaned every day, along with regular one-to-one time and they need a lot of room in their cage.
They can live for around 20 years and their fearless nature can make them curious and a little aggressive so definitely better for older youngsters.
Diamond doves are small and enjoy living with other doves. They can be tamed and need lots of space in their cage. They don’t require intense social time with humans, particularly if they have another dove for company. They can live for around 15 years and need lots of perches to fly around and land on.
There are many birds to choose from so when picking a pet bird for your children, make sure to do your research into exactly how much care each different species requires and what size of cage it requires.
Don’t be tempted to take your children to the bird store and let them choose randomly as you could well end up with a bird which requires lots of handling which they might not be confident or patient enough to deal with.
Do some research and look into the kind of species which best fit your home, the size of space you have available and the time and dedication which you have to spend with it. It’s also worth looking at the life span because many birds can live a long time which means you might well end up looking after the bird when your children leave home and go off to college.
A pet bird can make a great companion and whether your child wants to have a bird that sits on their shoulder, or is just happy to watch their pet from outside of the cage, there is one that will meet your requirements.