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I feel like i dont understand him at all :(

Tapew0rrm

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Hi!

So, I've had my black capped conure for around 4 weeks now. And I'm aware that it takes way longer to bond with and be friends with a bird, but I feel like me and him just..don't understand each other? Or where to go?

He's 6 years old, and I knew getting an older bird would be a bit troubling since he lost his last owner and is probably very hurt. But its like..I just don't feel a connection with him at all? I feel terrible for saying that, and I'm trying to work past it, get to know him and connect with him, but it feels like there's just something missing? I don't know. :(

We've had trouble since the beginning. He has no interest in being around me, he'll accept seeds from my fingers but outside of that he won't let me touch him at all. If I open his cage, I get bit, if I try to get him to step up, I get bit, if I do something that he doesn't like, I get bit. It's like everything is a biting trigger, or an annoyance to him. I'm trying to stay calm and relaxed around him but so far all he's done is make me cry and I'm just so lost. I can't even train him, because he wants nothing to do with me most of the time. He isn't afraid of me, he just doesn't seem to..like me?

We've had good moments, of course. He'll sit with me on my laptop and relax with me, he even let me pet him once for a few seconds. We shift between him being nice to me one day and then him viewing me as evil the next. I spend as much time as I can by his cage and talking to him as much as I can, and give him treats so he feels relaxed around me, but it just..seems like nothing is really working.

Today, the only thing he's done is stand at the edge of his cage and scream at me or chirp, whether I'm close to the cage or in the same room, he's at the same spot chirping while staring at me, and I'm trying so hard to understand what he wants, but it's like..nothing I do seems to be what he wants?

He has a specific low perch outside the cage that he goes on when he wants me to come over to him, so when he goes down to it, I go over to say hi to him, but immediately he rushes back to the previous position of screaming at me. I don't? Get what he wants. I've given him space and he doesn't calm down, I sit and talk with him and he doesn't calm down, I give him treats and he doesn't calm down. He doesn't even accept the treats, he just moves away and ignores me.

I feel so lost and out of my depth with him, like we don't understand each other at all. And it's upsetting me so much. But I don't know what to do at this point and I just want to cry. I've tried everything I can think of but it feels like it's just getting worse and he has no interest in me at all anymore.
 

Tapew0rrm

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I forgot to note; he constant access to outside the cage all day, but he never really goes out. He doesn't seem interested in it at all even when I've tried to make it inviting to him.
 

Icey

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Hi, 4 weeks isn't really that long. Keep doing what you're doing and have lots of patience.
Don't be in such a rush to start training. Depending on his previous owner(s) he may already have been trained to do things like step up.
It's a whole new environment, new people (you) and new cage set-up for him.
It's great you have a perch on the outside of his cage so he can venture out if he wants.
You are doing everything you should be doing.
Please don't get upset over this.
Quite possibly in a few months you will look back at this and laugh.
One thing you didn't mention, so not sure if you do it or not is to have music or the tv on. Mine love music and when they are being silly they will dance away to the songs.
Remember: keep calm (birds can pick up your feelings), relax (be silly with singing and dancing, or simply sitting talking to him) and be patient. He will come around.
Sending you big hugs :hug8:
 

MnGuy

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Four weeks isn't a lot of time. I know it's hard, but be patient. Scale your expectations way, way, way, way, way, way, way, way back.

Don't expect anything from him right now. Just let him live, adjust and learn to trust you on his timeframe.

Six isn't too old, either. Congratulations for adopting a bird! That is really great of you. I adopted all three of my parrots when they were grown and had gone through multiple homes: one was 17 at the time, one was 6 and the other was 7 when I adopted them. They're all amazing, but it took time to earn their trust.

What are you doing when he bites you? I'd say stop doing the thing that triggers his biting and let him reset himself. If he's biting you routinely he's in a heightened state and is on the look out for behaviors that trigger his biting. Stop doing what triggers him and give him several days to a week to just relax. Then begin your training/bonding again but go much, much, much slower this time and pay much closer attention to his body language.

Do you have a picture of his cage? Does he have enough space? Does he have toys?

I adopted my Meyer's when she was 17 and she bit me a lot until I learned not to push her too much and too fast.

I know you want what's best for you and for the bird, and I know you're trying really hard. I think it's important to remember to tailor your actions, behavior and timeline to what the bird needs and not what you want.

It takes a very long time to bond with a parrot. Good luck!
 

Pixiebeak

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Congratulations on your burd and thank you so much for taking a re home! 6 is prime of life .

There are probably a few things going on here.. possibly grieving past home , even if was a terrible home. Burds may greive for 3 months , I read up on burd grief when Ta-dah and I experienced loss and when taking in my old gal Penny. And even if not grieving, it can take some of them about 3 months to settle in and show true self.

One other common issue, is burds becoming cage bound. Very likely this one has spent a majority of his time caged. They shut down and withdraw. They are very fearfull to leave cage, have a great difficulty with change. Lose their confidence and natural curiosity. Becoming even more protective of their cage.

What I have found that helps them though this is the following. Having the back of the cage against a wall. Always approach cage from the front, announce yourself from several feet away. Be predictable with a routine. Explain everything use same phrases. Im coming to change your food and water. Or im just coming over to say hi and check on you. Don't try and train or interact with them inside the cage that's their only safe spot.

Set up the outside of the cage with as much stuff as possible. Many perches on the outside sides and across the top. With outside of cage treat only dish, and food and water dishes . Plus toys and chew stuff.
Will try to link member who did so freaking amazing with this abd her fearfull ARN
@parrutti

You want to build his confidence a d encourage exploring outside cage. Keep doing like yiu are one special perch outside of cage is where you will interact. The rest is fir him to get stimulating exploring confidence for now.

Start linking "good birdie" with everything positive he does. When he eats, drinks, preens, starts to fall asleep, chews in anything
Comes outside of cage on own
Say good birdie! This links the postive good vibes he is feeling with the phrase. They learn wuick whst good birdie means. Abd it will be so helpful with everything else and training later.

I'd love to share more but I git stuff I need to do.

Be sure he isn't ignoring you. He us very aware and watching you. Just holding his cards close to his heart right now.
 
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Tyrion

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:congrats5: like everyone has said just give it time ..I have a BF Amazon that after 6 yrs still wont let me touch her ..I havent given up I just move with her at her speed and hope some day she will let me touch her :)
 

Tapew0rrm

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Thank you all so much for being so friendly and helpful. You're totally right, I'm expecting waaaaaaaaaaaaay too much out of him and need to slow it down. I'll be sure to slow things down and be more relaxed with him. I think I just got overly concerned because I thought I was doing something wrong, but hearing feedback is really helpful <3
 

Icey

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Thank you all so much for being so friendly and helpful. You're totally right, I'm expecting waaaaaaaaaaaaay too much out of him and need to slow it down. I'll be sure to slow things down and be more relaxed with him. I think I just got overly concerned because I thought I was doing something wrong, but hearing feedback is really helpful <3
Just curious. Did the previous owner(s) say if he stepped up and had out of cage time?
 

Tapew0rrm

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Four weeks isn't a lot of time. I know it's hard, but be patient. Scale your expectations way, way, way, way, way, way, way, way back.

Don't expect anything from him right now. Just let him live, adjust and learn to trust you on his timeframe.

Six isn't too old, either. Congratulations for adopting a bird! That is really great of you. I adopted all three of my parrots when they were grown and had gone through multiple homes: one was 17 at the time, one was 6 and the other was 7 when I adopted them. They're all amazing, but it took time to earn their trust.

What are you doing when he bites you? I'd say stop doing the thing that triggers his biting and let him reset himself. If he's biting you routinely he's in a heightened state and is on the look out for behaviors that trigger his biting. Stop doing what triggers him and give him several days to a week to just relax. Then begin your training/bonding again but go much, much, much slower this time and pay much closer attention to his body language.

Do you have a picture of his cage? Does he have enough space? Does he have toys?

I adopted my Meyer's when she was 17 and she bit me a lot until I learned not to push her too much and too fast.

I know you want what's best for you and for the bird, and I know you're trying really hard. I think it's important to remember to tailor your actions, behavior and timeline to what the bird needs and not what you want.

It takes a very long time to bond with a parrot. Good luck!


I do have a picture of his cage! I was wondering if the toys and such were alright. I dont have many outside of cage toys for him right now, but I'm working on getting more. And a few more stands to help him feel safer exploring wise

I think you're right on the biting thing. He tends to go to bite when I'm changing his food or opening/closing the cage, as well as if I try to ask him to step up mostly, I feel like when I made this post I was a little overwhelmed with it and felt out of my depth, but the replies helped a lot. I'll try to give him his time to relax and not rush him, I feel so embarrassed for being so expectant of him.

I'll take a step back and reevaluate the way I'm interacting with him, see how comfortable with situations he is more so I'm not pushing him too far. No training until I'm certain he's 400% comfortable with me, my only issue is..how do I pick him up safely for vet visits while waiting for him to feel safe with me? I read its important to get there nails/beak trimmed monthly. :*
 

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MnGuy

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I do have a picture of his cage! I was wondering if the toys and such were alright. I dont have many outside of cage toys for him right now, but I'm working on getting more. And a few more stands to help him feel safer exploring wise

I think you're right on the biting thing. He tends to go to bite when I'm changing his food or opening/closing the cage, as well as if I try to ask him to step up mostly, I feel like when I made this post I was a little overwhelmed with it and felt out of my depth, but the replies helped a lot. I'll try to give him his time to relax and not rush him, I feel so embarrassed for being so expectant of him.

I'll take a step back and reevaluate the way I'm interacting with him, see how comfortable with situations he is more so I'm not pushing him too far. No training until I'm certain he's 400% comfortable with me, my only issue is..how do I pick him up safely for vet visits while waiting for him to feel safe with me? I read its important to get there nails/beak trimmed monthly. :*
Don't feel embarrassed. Your post shows that you care a lot about him and are trying really hard, which are great signs.

His cage looks good. Does the cage have any doors for food and water holders that can be removed from the outside? It sounds like he is a little cage aggressive.

If you can't access food and water bowls from the outside, get some millet sprays and offer some to him with one hand while you remove and replace the bowls with your other hand.

You can also use millet sprays to help bond with him from a safe distance where he can't bite your hand. Use them as a training treat and not a staple diet. Offer them to him with the door open. Sit in a chair and hold the spray inside so he can eat from it. Do a few minutes at a time; millet is a treat.

Once he's eating the millet spray calmly for several days without going for your finger, move the spray further away from his perch while your other hand is near the perch until he has to put one foot on your finger/hand to reach it. Keep doing that slowly over the course of a few days or weeks--moving the millet further away each time--until he's stepping fully onto your hand. After a few days of that, only offer him millet spray when he's completely on your hand.

Good luck!
 

Tapew0rrm

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Don't feel embarrassed. Your post shows that you care a lot about him and are trying really hard, which are great signs.

His cage looks good. Does the cage have any doors for food and water holders that can be removed from the outside? It sounds like he is a little cage aggressive.

If you can't access food and water bowls from the outside, get some millet sprays and offer some to him with one hand while you remove and replace the bowls with your other hand.

You can also use millet sprays to help bond with him from a safe distance where he can't bite your hand. Use them as a training treat and not a staple diet. Offer them to him with the door open. Sit in a chair and hold the spray inside so he can eat from it. Do a few minutes at a time; millet is a treat.

Once he's eating the millet spray calmly for several days without going for your finger, move the spray further away from his perch while your other hand is near the perch until he has to put one foot on your finger/hand to reach it. Keep doing that slowly over the course of a few days or weeks--moving the millet further away each time--until he's stepping fully onto your hand. After a few days of that, only offer him millet spray when he's completely on your hand.

Good luck!

I've actually been doing similar to make getting the food easier/ending in less bites, where I'll feed him some millet/seed through the bars in the morning while explaining what I'm doing as I open the cage and slowly take the food/water, he seems to handle it better that way, I get away with only small, non bleeding bites now. But I will look into bowls that can be changed like that! It could be helpful.

And thank you for the last part!! I've always seen that done in videos but I never understood fully how it worked (autism processing issues are totally funnn), seeing it written down is so much simpler!
 

Pixiebeak

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I do have a picture of his cage! I was wondering if the toys and such were alright. I dont have many outside of cage toys for him right now, but I'm working on getting more. And a few more stands to help him feel safer exploring wise

I think you're right on the biting thing. He tends to go to bite when I'm changing his food or opening/closing the cage, as well as if I try to ask him to step up mostly, I feel like when I made this post I was a little overwhelmed with it and felt out of my depth, but the replies helped a lot. I'll try to give him his time to relax and not rush him, I feel so embarrassed for being so expectant of him.

I'll take a step back and reevaluate the way I'm interacting with him, see how comfortable with situations he is more so I'm not pushing him too far. No training until I'm certain he's 400% comfortable with me, my only issue is..how do I pick him up safely for vet visits while waiting for him to feel safe with me? I read its important to get there nails/beak trimmed monthly. :*
Love the cage ! At home depot they sell acrylic sheets already the exact size of the top. Or smaller ones if you onkynwsnt to cover part to make easier to put outba bath boel or veggies plate to explore. I love it fir ease of cleaning keeps stuff from dropping dien into cage. Is easier for them to walk across the top of cage too.

You can bring a comfy chair over to smash next to the cage snd just chill. Allowing to come down and explore on yiu if they want with no pressure. And can have millet or other treats handy to just hand out if able.
Most burds do not need beak trims and only rare nail trims. Lodt if different chew stuff they keep beak in shape on own. Looks like yiu already have that covered
Good luck ! I know you will get there!
 

Tapew0rrm

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Just curious. Did the previous owner(s) say if he stepped up and had out of cage time?
They did have pictures of him outside his cage/on their hand, so I'm assuming that he did? Though I'm unsure exactly how often or if they'd had him out for a while. I adopted him off someone who no longer had time to take care of him so I'm unsure if he was left alone for a while or not. A weird thing about the past owners too is that they lied about the vet he went to? When I called their previous vet they said they didn't work with birds. So, it was a little odd. :/
 

Emma&pico

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He’s so gorgeous some brilliant advise given

time and patience is the key you will get to know each other
 

Pixiebeak

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They did have pictures of him outside his cage/on their hand, so I'm assuming that he did? Though I'm unsure exactly how often or if they'd had him out for a while. I adopted him off someone who no longer had time to take care of him so I'm unsure if he was left alone for a while or not. A weird thing about the past owners too is that they lied about the vet he went to? When I called their previous vet they said they didn't work with birds. So, it was a little odd. :/
Many times previous owners are not fully truthful. They just want to get the burd placed.
 

Tapew0rrm

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Love the cage ! At home depot they sell acrylic sheets already the exact size of the top. Or smaller ones if you onkynwsnt to cover part to make easier to put outba bath boel or veggies plate to explore. I love it fir ease of cleaning keeps stuff from dropping dien into cage. Is easier for them to walk across the top of cage too.

You can bring a comfy chair over to smash next to the cage snd just chill. Allowing to come down and explore on yiu if they want with no pressure. And can have millet or other treats handy to just hand out if able.
Most burds do not need beak trims and only rare nail trims. Lodt if different chew stuff they keep beak in shape on own. Looks like yiu already have that covered
Good luck ! I know you will get there!

Sadly they don't havehome depot in the uk, but I'll be sure to check if I can find similar here! That sounds like a pretty helpful idea actually.

My bed is actually set up next to where the cage is, so I tend to sit by him when I'm in the room for an hour or so, and then chill out on the other side of the bed to give him space,I think he likes it like that? He really loves it when I sit next to him while eating and give him a few greens :)
 

Tapew0rrm

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He’s so gorgeous some brilliant advise given

time and patience is the key you will get to know each other
Thank you <3
I'm glad to know that I'm not doing anything wrong. I really do want the best for him.

Here's a better picture of him. He really is a sweetie <3
 

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Tapew0rrm

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Many times previous owners are not fully truthful. They just want to get the burd placed.
I thought that too. They did seem to care a lot about him though, the owner was a teen and couldn't take care of him because of exams :( I honestly felt a bit bad taking him, looking back I likely would've tried to offer advice on how to spend time with him instead of immediately resulting in rehoming but given they had him since she was a kid, I'm assuming that they thought about other posibilities first.Or at least I hope they did :(
 

Pixiebeak

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I thought that too. They did seem to care a lot about him though, the owner was a teen and couldn't take care of him because of exams :( I honestly felt a bit bad taking him, looking back I likely would've tried to offer advice on how to spend time with him instead of immediately resulting in rehoming but given they had him since she was a kid, I'm assuming that they thought about other posibilities first.Or at least I hope they did :(
He belongs with you! And he is clearly interested in you in that photo!
Things just take time
 
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