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Discipline/punishment. Just bad advice.

HolliDaze

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When I got my first cockatiel, my boyfriend's mother tried to tell me to "flick her on the beak if she bites" I immediately ignored that advice. I wouldnt do that to dexter, let alone a cockatiel! But this was coming from the same family that whipped their "rescue" dog with a belt for growling when a treat was taken from her.
I learned animal training and behavior from a zookeeping class. Negative reinforcement only creates fear. When a ferret escaped and killed my cockatiel, he received no punisment. Although he caused me a lot of sadness and distress, he was simply doing what he was meant to do. Although a bite may cause me pain, I was bit because birds bite.
 

Nancy B

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I think this is sad. If Freddy screams it's always something causing it. Either he's happy, excited or something is scaring him. After the lights go out sometimes he will scream and I go running to make sure he's ok. I wouldn't think to ever punish him. And I usually encourage him to scream, he happens to be cute when he's expressing himself.

Poor bird.
:unsure1:
 

ThePeepingEgg

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*Begin of rant*
What an excellent thread. I am retired from the canine behavioral field, and if I got a dollar for every single ignorant and lazy person that came into my office, wanting to get a quick fix with a credit card but didn't want to invest any time and actually training and modifying their dogs behaviors, I would have gotten very rich just based on that. Many people acquire animals based on looks or what has been portrayed on TV and dont do any homework whatsoever. After a few months they are then surprised why a certain bird is screaming its head off and mutilating itself or a certain type of dog breed is starting to chew up their entire house and is becoming aggressive.

Then here they were, with credit card in hand, promising to make whatever changes are necessary. Long story short, they were not even taking their dog for a 20 minute walk once a day or changing the dogs food to better fit its nutritional needs. Their good intentions lasted about 1 week and then they realized it was simply too much work. It's so much easier to simply dump an animal off at the shelter, isn't it? Or better yet, medicate it. Anything BUT investing a little bit of time and trying to do things consistently.

I got so frustrated at one point that I just walked out in the middle of a consultation. That's when I knew it was time to quit what I was doing and forfeit the comfortable amount of money I was making for happy retirement. To this day, I cannot stand seeing dog owners being drug around by their dogs at the end of their leashes... Or hearing people say just how adorable it was when their little Yorkshire Terrier growled at their grandkids. Argh!
I think one of the biggest problems is that people in general are very inconsistent and therefore, the animals get mixed messages and don't understand what is expected of them. The same is true for negativity vs. positivity - when children are sitting quietly, coloring for example... Parents tend to ignore their children because there isn't a problem. But then when they act up they're being told no and get punished. What if, more parents were to praise their children while they are being quiet coloring instead of waiting for them to do something bad? I'm sure you guys know what I'm trying to say here. In many areas, I believe the same principle applies to almost all animals. Don't wait for them to start displaying bad behaviors to begin training. Start praising them often for things that you like, rather than waiting for them to do things you don't like.

I apologize for making this about dogs, but I believe this applies to all animals and people. Whereas I consider myself very experienced with dogs I am just beginning to learn about birds and enjoy the journey very much. I've only been here a few days and have already learned a lot, thanks to all of you.
*End of rant*
 

JLcribber

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It was a good rant. :hug8:
 

Thenatural

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Nailed it!

Shut up kid what the hell is wrong with you and then ...oh look what I got you sunshine!

Good points.

I squirted junior a couple times for aggravating chuckee to know end and I felt so bad I nearly cried.

Doesn't work anyway.

So I did the whole apologize and I was wrong thing and now let chuckee handle him.

She will now put her whole mouth around him and remove him its hilarious!

Best to let them figure it out and stay out of it.

Your right as rain on this John.

One love
 

Thenatural

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John I was on the couch taking a siesta and next thing I know I got a nibble on my big toe!

Chuckster had gurged up a whole circle around the couch to feed me and waked me for dinner lol.

Freaking hilarious!

So she got discipline pretty good by me flopping in the floor and laughing.

Never a dull moment and you can't get mad.

She just loves me, however many could not take such an event and why people must play the tape through before getting one.

They will pry my girl from a cold dead hand brother.

One love
 

ChirpyMacaw

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this is an awesome post, same with a lot of the replies! actually taught me a lot :)
 

Aviarynut

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My cockatoo screams after they've been covered and put to bed. She hears us and wants out attention. Punishment is not the way to handle any animal aviary or canine. One of us goes in their room and pick up her cover and talk to her a few minutes and she goes fast asleep. My conure does exactly what conures do, scream...lol Fruitloop is a rescue and my watch bird. I know exactly when someone is outside my house, he starts screaming...lol anyone who thinks punishment is a proper way to handle birds shouldn't have ANY animal.
 

Award

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I am totally with this about punishment. I have learnt the hard way with my young African Grey, Jasper. The trouble is that when Jasper does something really annoying, like biting the rug, I shout at him. He knows full well that he shouldn't do it, he does it to get a reaction. I know that he wants a reaction, but I have two choices to shout or to put up with holes in the rug until he gets bored. This is a bit difficult, any ideas? I know that there are times when I have frightened him out of sheer desperation, and i would do anything top put back the clock, but when you have been trying to get him back into his cage for 3 hours and he has defied you, you run out of patience. Positive reinforcement is a great idea, I can't say that it has worked very well with Jasper - maybe I just don't have the patience.
 

JLcribber

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. I know that he wants a reaction, but I have two choices to shout or to put up with holes in the rug until he gets bored. This is a bit difficult, any ideas
You change the antecedent. If you modify the situation like covering that piece of carpet so there is no access. The problem solves itself.
 

tka

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I am totally with this about punishment. I have learnt the hard way with my young African Grey, Jasper. The trouble is that when Jasper does something really annoying, like biting the rug, I shout at him. He knows full well that he shouldn't do it, he does it to get a reaction. I know that he wants a reaction, but I have two choices to shout or to put up with holes in the rug until he gets bored. This is a bit difficult, any ideas? I know that there are times when I have frightened him out of sheer desperation, and i would do anything top put back the clock, but when you have been trying to get him back into his cage for 3 hours and he has defied you, you run out of patience. Positive reinforcement is a great idea, I can't say that it has worked very well with Jasper - maybe I just don't have the patience.
Remove the rug. If the rug isn't there, he can't chew it.

Think about target training him so you can move him around the room without having to catch him. Make sure that the cage isn't seen as a punishment - give him a treat every time you put him back, and practice putting him in for very short periods and building up the time. He needs to be taught that going in the cage isn't you ending his fun for the night.
 

Alien J

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trying to get him back into his cage for 3 hours and he has defied you,
I know what you mean. When we need to roll (we are full time RV'er's) and I need to get him into his travel cage, he plays "Catch me if you can", until my fiance and my dogs are more than fed up and I am frustrated beyond belief!

I know that he wants a reaction, but I have two choices
One more than me!!!

I have frightened him out of sheer desperation, and i would do anything top put back the clock
I can't tell you how many times that's happened to me with TD. I have a lot of guilt over my loss of patience.


Make sure that the cage isn't seen as a punishment
I try. It's hard bcuz sometimes I have had to force the issue.

I
You change the antecedent
Any suggestions for me in my situation?
 

JLcribber

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Any suggestions for me in my situation?
You need to change your approach to this (antecedent). As soon as you start chasing him the game is over and you will lose every time.

My approach is to lure them to me for any other reason and get them on my arm or some favorite object (our magic slipper) they will readily get on. Then I quickly cup my hand over them just long enough to get them in the cage. He's not going to like it at first if you never touch him but within a week or so he will start accepting it. It's quick, efficient with only a few seconds of stress in the beginning. You'll get nipped a bit until you/him figure it out.
 

Jas

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I have a perch on the inside of their door and they know if they stand on it and I close the door they get a treat.

All I did was put them on the perch close the door and give them a treat each.

Though I also have their veggie bowl next to the perch so if I place them on it they don't always go back in their cage.
 

Alien J

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He's not going to like it at first if you never touch him but within a week or
TD believes that the reason for my existence is to tickle-tickle (give skritches) him. He would stand with his face smashed against the bars all day for it! When he was a baby, he was afraid of hands. I was more worried about keeping him fed and keeping him alive at that point. I wish now I would have handled him more. He's just now starting to let me give him skritches when he's outside of his habitat. We're working on it.

You need to change your approach to this (antecedent).
You are absolutely right! Thank you!

and I close the door they get a treat.
This is an ongoing issue for me. I have found no food item that TD loves so much that he will do things for it. He loves just about anything but not deleriously.

so if I place them on it they don't always go back in their cage.
I try to do this...when there are no time limitations.
 
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Nancy B

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I used to give Fred little time outs (putting him down in a safe place to relax if over excited) if he nipped. One member commented if you don't like a behavior don't give the bird an opportunity to do it. Best advice ever. If I know he's getting over excited (easy to spot), I tell him it's time for a rest, and I put him on his comfy cat tree. Sometimes with a snack. He gives me a happy chirp and welcomes his snacks lol
 

fashionfobie

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I used to give Fred little time outs (putting him down in a safe place to relax if over excited) if he nipped. One member commented if you don't like a behavior don't give the bird an opportunity to do it. Best advice ever. If I know he's getting over excited (easy to spot), I tell him it's time for a rest, and I put him on his comfy cat tree. Sometimes with a snack. He gives me a happy chirp and welcomes his snacks lol
That is really good advice. "Don't give them the opportunity to do the behaviour"

In regards to screaming and cockatoos. All cockatoos enjoy screaming. It isn't just fear or alarm. A flock of about 30 little corellas visit UQ (Uni of Queensland) regularly. They forage, play, groom and hop about. I could watch them for hours.

They use the same exact calls and screams my goffin uses. Exactly! They even hang upside-down on a branch and just puff out, open their wings, flap and scream. They think it is hilarious and fun. If anything it is part of their society and it is culturally normative for cockatoos. The scream for an alarm is very distinct and they all fly off together when one of the group signals them. To be honest I had never heard my goffin, use this alarm scream. She does do the contact scream/call when I am out of the room or out of the home. The alarm scream is really .. alarming frankly. I hope pet birds don't feel a need to use it often. If they did they will have a very good reason for it.

Watching the parrots in the wild blows my mind. Our companions do not act differently. Each bird is an individual of their species. We should never punish them for that :)
 

Apple71354

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I agree, my bird screams, but I ignore it. But lately she keeps getting angry and biting me. I can’t figure out what she’s upset about. I put her in time outs but just in her cage, I don’t cover it. But she’s still doing it. What would you do?
 
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