This small type of bird is friendly, low cost, and very easy to keep. This is what makes them perfect pets for any first-time bird owners. Even though they are easy to keep, there are some things you need to know before owning one yourself.
These happy and chirpy little birds can make great company for us humans, especially the older generation. Studies have been proven that elderly people are in fact physically and mentally happier if they have a pet.
However, as we all know, some elderly individuals may struggle to take their dog for regular walks. This is why a budgie would make a perfect pet for them…they also chirp sweet noises!
These birds may be sweet and easy to look after, but they do have their drawbacks which is important to consider before owning one yourself or getting one for somebody else.
Despite budgies being one of the smallest pet birds you can own, they still require a large enough cage to spread their wings.
Their cage should be no smaller than 41cm x 23cm x 38cm and we recommend that you add different textures, levels, and materials to allow mental stimulation but also increase the muscle in their feet. With the added levels and perches, they can choose which perch is used for each activity like sleeping, cleaning, and eating.
If you would like to make their cage look prettier, or maybe you would like to jazz it up more, then you can add bird-safe gravel paper to the bottom of their cage.
Keep in mind that you should avoid using newspapers in the cage as the ink can make them ill if they ingest the paper when shredding it.
What Should I Feed My Budgie?
Despite some people’s beliefs about what your pet budgie should be fed, they require a more varied diet than just bird seeds. Fruit and vegetables form an integral part of diet. You should also look at including things like apples, bananas, carrots, and broccoli. They aren’t picky – Most fruit and vegetables are loved by your budgies.
Something a little bit different for your bird to snack on is pasta. Whether it be cooked or raw, pasta offers them a great boost of energy due to the carbohydrates in it. Any type of pasta will keep your pet bird happy and entertained.
One thing birds love are nuts! Walnuts, in particular, are full of nutritional values to your bird’s health and they will be over the moon to be offered these as a treat.
Nuts can also be a great way to exercise their beaks as well as providing them with entertainment in trying to crack and pry the nuts open.
Another thing you could try is a piece of cuttlebone or a mineral block, these can offer your bird added calcium and help them naturally keep their beak trimmed. Whilst this is not necessarily classed as food, it is a great item to have in your little bird’s cage.
Can I Handle My Budgie?
Budgies are known to be sociable and affectionate which means they can be loving to their owner. It is important to remember that whilst budgies are known to be sociable, you shouldn’t force them to socialise. You need to gradually let them become accustomed to your presence – don’t suffocate them with an overabundance of affection when you first purchase them.
Luckily for some owners, there are budgies which can be instantly friendly and love to interact with humans, others may be reserved to start with.
As with many pets, it all takes time, perseverance, and a lot of bribery. We mean it, find your birds favourite snack, and use it to your advantage!
Unfortunately, birds are a lot smaller than many other household pets e.g. cats and dogs. This means they may not particularly enjoy being cuddled or held firmly, but they can hop on your finger and go for a wander around the house and see new sights.
One way to be able to hold your birdie is to finger train them…this is where their favourite snacks come into play. Always start wherever they feel safest, this is normally in their cage, and start by simply offering their treats off your finger whilst they become socialised with your hand being near them.
Once you have done this, for several days you should start introducing them to your stretched out finger stretched – very gently pressing your finger against their chest, encouraging them to jump on board.
Throughout this whole time, make sure to feed them their favourite snack. Eventually you will have a best friend sat on your finger!
Grooming Your Budgie
You may think this is strange and you won’t be able to find a hairbrush small enough for their delicate little bodies. But budgies do in fact require a grooming session every other day. Although we don’t mean that you need to sit there with a little hairbrush combing their fabulous feathers.
They do however, require their feathers to be dampened either by a mini birdbath placed in their cage or you can even dampen your finger from the kitchen tap and rub down their feathers. Alternatively, you can use a very gentle spray bottle.
Any of these methods work and are required as they need moisture to soften the sheaths of their quills. When this is done, new feathers can grow.
Once your budgie has had a bath, be sure to place them away from any drafts and avoid doing it prior to them roosting so they are not damp and develop a chill.
Can I Talk To My Pet Budgie?
Whilst there is no way to guarantee for sure that you will be able to speak to your budgie, there are many tips and tricks to help increase the chances of being able to communicate with them.
It is known that budgies can communicate with their owners better than some large parrots can. But this requires them to be trained before they reach the age of one. If you have yet to teach them the power of talking by this age, it is highly unlikely you will ever be able to fully teach them this special trick.
Early in the morning, when your budgie feels as fresh as a daisy and is ready to learn new words, is the best time to train them to talk.
Simple words and phrases such as ‘hello’, ‘goodbye’, ‘good morning’, and ‘thank you’ are a great start. Try using words which have minimal syllables as they do not have vocal cords, so may struggle to pronounce long words.
If you would love for them to remember their own name, (I mean who wouldn’t), choose a short but simple one to be sure they will be able to say and remember it.
Going back to the finger training, make the most of their love for foods and reward them their favourite treats. They love snacks and make happy noises when receiving them.
By now, you will have a good understanding on budgies. From how to get them to talk, to what diet they require. Hopefully, you have learnt some interesting facts about the species, and if you ever come to owning one, you make a friend for life!