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GCC- How to make him calmer/comfortable?

bobocon

Moving in
Joined
7/27/22
Messages
7
Hiya, new here so bear with!!
I very recently got a GCC whom I rehomed as his previous owner didn’t have the time anymore. He’s 3yrs and 6m. I’ve had him barely a week so I’m really just looking for some vague advice as I’ve read a lot of posts but none that align with him perfectly, because all birds are different of course!

He’s pretty angry a lot of the time, he puffs, he bites (hard) and he hates me touching his cage. He loves to be out of his cage but it’s a mild nightmare trying to get him back in as he won’t step up on my finger, palm or a perch and instead will have a good chomp on my fingers all puffed up like a pompom.

He shouts at me and wants attention, but he only seems to like it in the evening when I sing to him. Talking to him in the day is a hit or miss, I try to be constantly muttering gently to get him used to me, but sometimes he just shrill screams until I stop talking.

He’s moulting at the moment and I’ve read he could well be in a mating state of mind. I’ve got a clicker on the way and I’m going to try to begin target training as soon as that arrives.

Overall, I guess I’d just like to know if there’s anything else I can do or buy that could help him settle a little bit? I’ve read about calming supplements and tea, has anyone got any first hand reviews on any of that?

Thank you for reading !! <3
 

Wardy

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It's a big change for your bird moving from a place it has lived for a number of years to your home.
A week isnt a long time just keep interacting with the bird from a distance and offer treats when you pass the cage and be patient with him so he learns to trust you.
Target training should help things.
 

MommyBird

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Congratulations on your new friend. What's his name?
He doesn't need any calming supplements at this point, his behavior sounds pretty reasonable for only knowing you such a short time.
It sounds like he didn't get regular handling at his previous home so he needs to learn, and he is trying to figure out if you can be trusted.

You will need to figure out his very favorite treats and save those for training. It is probably food, but some birds prefer praise/drama or a toy.
Another thing you'll need to know for clicker training is how to read his body language and then show him that you understand his body language so he doesn't need to progress to biting you to get his message across.

When he is puffed up he is threatening to bite. You need to back off. You are training him that he needs to bite you to get your attention. This could have been the case in his previous home that people were clueless and he had to bite them. So, it will take a bit for him to learn you are different.
When his feathers are slicked down extra skinny he is scared (which can lead to fight or flight). Back off and only progress to the point where he was comfortable.
Clicker training is as much about you learning his body language as it is for giving him a means to communicate with you.

Don't push. Back off and go at his speed and build up your trust bank.
Drop treats in his dish when you pass by. Start saying his name before you drop the treat to get ready for training .
Keep chatting, and singing. It is great that he likes it sometimes.
Don't stare and don't sneak quietly, those are predator behaviors.

Start doing some training first with him inside the cage. Have him touch the target stick from inside the cage, click/treat, then move the stick to a different perch and have him target again and treat. When he undersatnds that it will be easier when he's outside the cage and you are trying to get him on a hand or branch.
When he is out of the cage, don't chase him around with the stick trying to get him to step on it, you will more be luring him with a treat and rewarding him. Keep your sessions short, like 5 min, and always end with a success.

Let us know how you are doing!
 

bobocon

Moving in
Joined
7/27/22
Messages
7
Congratulations on your new friend. What's his name?
He doesn't need any calming supplements at this point, his behavior sounds pretty reasonable for only knowing you such a short time.
It sounds like he didn't get regular handling at his previous home so he needs to learn, and he is trying to figure out if you can be trusted.

You will need to figure out his very favorite treats and save those for training. It is probably food, but some birds prefer praise/drama or a toy.
Another thing you'll need to know for clicker training is how to read his body language and then show him that you understand his body language so he doesn't need to progress to biting you to get his message across.

When he is puffed up he is threatening to bite. You need to back off. You are training him that he needs to bite you to get your attention. This could have been the case in his previous home that people were clueless and he had to bite them. So, it will take a bit for him to learn you are different.
When his feathers are slicked down extra skinny he is scared (which can lead to fight or flight). Back off and only progress to the point where he was comfortable.
Clicker training is as much about you learning his body language as it is for giving him a means to communicate with you.

Don't push. Back off and go at his speed and build up your trust bank.
Drop treats in his dish when you pass by. Start saying his name before you drop the treat to get ready for training .
Keep chatting, and singing. It is great that he likes it sometimes.
Don't stare and don't sneak quietly, those are predator behaviors.

Start doing some training first with him inside the cage. Have him touch the target stick from inside the cage, click/treat, then move the stick to a different perch and have him target again and treat. When he undersatnds that it will be easier when he's outside the cage and you are trying to get him on a hand or branch.
When he is out of the cage, don't chase him around with the stick trying to get him to step on it, you will more be luring him with a treat and rewarding him. Keep your sessions short, like 5 min, and always end with a success.

Let us know how you are doing!

This is fantastic, thank you so much!! His name is Boris. Thank you again <3
 

MommyBird

Biking along the boulevard
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This is fantastic, thank you so much!! His name is Boris. Thank you again <3
I just got a notice for an upcoming webinar for training and behavior on Aug 20. It is free but you must register.
Upcoming Events
Phoenix Landing is a trusted organization, and if you look on their "past events" page there are some recorded webinars you may find interesting.
 

Lady Jane

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I second that about educating yourself with Phoenix Landing events.
 
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