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Vet told me to force wean

Discussion in 'Nursery Rhyme Drive' started by HolliDaze, 10/12/17 at 12:26 PM.

  1. HolliDaze

    HolliDaze Strolling the yard

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    This is kind of old news, but about a month ago, my vet told me to force wean. Dexter is six months, and at the time, was being hand fed every other day. He ate enough adult food, and it seemed Dexter was only begging for the attention. The vet told me not to hand feed him anymore, even when he begged.
    After a month, he still begs every other day or so. I haven't hand fed him since the vet told me to stop. He is much less persistent now, only begging for 15 seconds before returning to his play. He started trying to beg to other people (I'm the only person besides the breeder who ever hand fed him). His weight is fine.
    My bird vet is one of the top avian vets in the country. she was concerned that dex would soon see the handfeeding as a breeding behavior. He seems none the worse for wear psychologically. What do you guys think of this?
     
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  2. Fia Baby

    Fia Baby Strolling the yard

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    Is Dexter an umbrella? Large cockatoo parents take care of their chicks for a long time. From what I've read, they're very nurturing parents, willing to feed anytime a chick they're feeling insecure or needy and asks for a quick meal. Personally, I'd offer if he asks. By the time you have it ready, he may decide he doesn't want it, but I'd offer it anyway. It could just be something warm and mushy on your fingers. At six months, he's still a baby; I wouldn't worry about him seeing it as mating behavior at his age.
     
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  3. Familyof12

    Familyof12 Sprinting down the street I Can't Stop Posting!

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    My understanding of Cockatoos are pretty limited to just some research but I understand larger parrots in the wild often stay within a family environment. They also live quite long lives and due to that, they take a lot longer to grow up and the smaller parrot species. I know they are extremely affectionate birds and do love having a permanent companion (which I believe you seem to be) and I don't see anything wrong with him seeing you as a mother figure or permanent companion and feed him when he asks. At six months I agree with @Fla Baby that he's still pretty young if he is an umbrella cockatoo or a larger species.

    It seems your vet's main concerned is that Dexter may become overly co-dependent on you and not be as independent as he would in the wild, in order to be confident. Confident animals know that if you leave, you'll come back. They won't have anxiety when you're gone. Anxiety and boredom causes a lot of health issues for birds. They are incredibly animals with emotional memory. The vet wants you to wean him so he will eat on his own if you can't be around all the time in the future. But as @fla Baby noted, at six months, he is still very young for a cockatoo.
     
  4. HolliDaze

    HolliDaze Strolling the yard

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    Okay. I'll start giving him some feedings if he asks I'm scared he'll star asking constantly, as if he was reliant on the feedings again.
     
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  5. Fia Baby

    Fia Baby Strolling the yard

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    He won't, unless there's an underlying medical issue. He's driven to grow up, just like human kids!!
     
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  6. Macawnutz

    Macawnutz Seriously Nutz! Super Administrator AA Advertising Exec Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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  7. HolliDaze

    HolliDaze Strolling the yard

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    I fed him some warmed baby food. Ive never seen him so excited. It was very messy (we are both out of practice) but he's very, very content now
     
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  8. TikiMyn

    TikiMyn Sprinting down the street I Can't Stop Posting! POSTAHOLIC

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    Ahw, Dexter must be quite an adorable white mess right now:rofl:
     
  9. JLcribber

    JLcribber Joyriding the Neighborhood Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran Shutterbugs' Best

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    I do not agree with your vet. For one thing it will take 5 or more years before your bird is even capable of breeding. Until then it's a juvenile. Old school thinking. All parrots should be abundance weaned and "fledged" (just as important).

    For your reading pleasure.


     
  10. HolliDaze

    HolliDaze Strolling the yard

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    I abundance weaned him until the vet told me to stop hand Feeding him. She seemed very concerned like it would have a negative impact on him.
     
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  11. Macawnutz

    Macawnutz Seriously Nutz! Super Administrator AA Advertising Exec Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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    My vet looked at me like I had six heads when I said my BG was still taking morning handfeedings. I cringe to give the exact age but I will say 2 years old. ;)

    There is a line that must be drawn I think.... It's not any months old but I was clearly a bit nuts. ;) I had to cut the cord, he didnt. Lol
     
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  12. JLcribber

    JLcribber Joyriding the Neighborhood Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran Shutterbugs' Best

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    Did she say what "negative impact" it would have? Read the article.

    If your cockatoo is still begging at 1 year old, then I would consider cutting him off. Not until then
     
  13. TWR

    TWR Rollerblading along the road Avenue Veteran

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    I plan to continue giving my 2 year old Jenday (Ara) and 1'year old Hahns Macaw (Hannah) a spoon feed for as long as they enjoy it. It's not formula any longer, but ground Harrisons pellets, puréed vegetables and a little water. My AV had nothing negative to say about it, only commenting that if needed I would have a convenient way to medicate. It's actually the only way I can get Harrisons & green veggies into Ara, but sadly I think she is starting to self wean. She definitely wants it as she impatiently waits (beak tapping some Perspex on her cage to remind me that she is waiting) while Hannah eats, but she only takes a teaspoon or 2 these days.
     
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  14. melissasparrots

    melissasparrots Rollerblading along the road Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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    Personally, I would not go back to offering a syringe feeding. In my mind, that bird is weaned, maintaining weight and done. However, if it were me, I'd be incorporating some kind of warm, nutritious comfort feeding that he can continue consuming as an adult. I give warm and cooked soft sweet potato mixed with cooked brown rice, quinoa and beans to all my birds a few times a week. Babies will chug it like they are being hand-fed, but even the adults like it. Sometimes I mash up a little bit of banana or drizzle some coconut milk over the top. I've found that it works great on babies that want to sit and cry, but don't really need to be hand-fed either. Plus, they can eat it out of their bowl like a grown up so they get the comfort of a warm meal without reinforcing co-dependent baby behavior.
     

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