• Welcome to Avian Avenue! To view our forum with less advertisments please register with us.
    Memberships are free and it will just take a moment. Click here

Trouble Gaining Trust with my cockatiel Cherrio

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
Hey everyone!

My name is Rylan Miner, and about 7 months ago I purchased a loving cockatiel that I named Cherrio. Since I bought the bird I am still uncertain about wether she is a boy or a girl, and even how old she it! This is some information that I don’t know about her. (I call her a girl) Anyway, I wanted to reach out to the community for help because I am struggling with gaining the trust of Cherrio.

Whenever I change her water or refill her food bowl she will hiss, or whenever my hands are near the cage she will do the same. This is one difficult thing that I am struggling with, just getting her comfortable with me. I have tried several exercises with her and it involves her hissing, going to the back of the cage, or she goes to the bottom of the cage. This has been an ongoing issue that I hope you guys will be able to help me with.

It makes me feel like she will never gain trust, but I know she can do it! I just need some extra help from you guys.

Any help would be appreciated. Have a wonderful day!
 

pearlybaby

Walking the driveway
Joined
11/30/19
Messages
271
Location
New Jersey
I will write what I wrote in another post about gaining trust:


Try different activities around her such as reading out loud so she gets used to your voice, playing music, anything that you would normally do but around her cage. While you are doing this, I recommend having the cage door open so she comes out by herself.

You can also start offering her treats such as millet. I personally think millet is much better than sunflower seeds when starting (unless your bird doesn’t like millet) because it allows the bird to eat from a distance without having to get close to the hand.

I definitely agree with @Kiwi's Mom about reading to your bird :p
 

Tiel Feathers

Joyriding the Neighborhood
Avenue Veteran
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
9/15/14
Messages
20,052
Location
Quincy,CA
Real Name
Deanna
Do you let her out of the cage? I would put a perch by the outside of her door and leave the door open so she can come out on her own. Many birds don’t like hands invading their personal space, but are more relaxed away from their cage. You can set up a play stand away from the cage and see if she will hang out on it. She might have to get used to it first, however. Watch her body language closely and make sure she associates you with only positive things. Save millet only for training, and see if she will will nibble on a long spray of millet as you hold it for her, or drop little pieces in her food dish when you walk by. You should also look up target training, which you can start while she is in her cage. Reading aloud to her by her cage is a good idea, and remember to never force her to do anything. How big is her cage? She might be more nervous if you changing her food or water if her cage is too small.
 

Tweet

Sprinting down the street
Avenue Veteran
Joined
8/18/13
Messages
599
Location
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Real Name
Jacklyn
Think of her cage like her nest. If you are timid in going in and handling her, therefor being rarely in and around the cage she won't be used to having you around it. Try taking her out and letting her spend some time with you, outside the cage. Like @Tiel Feathers suggested, save the millet for training if it is a high drive treat. I stand by target training for trust training. Break it down step by step like it's her first day. Let her learn that when she associates with you it means rewards and rubs! Everyone loves good rubs :) Overall make sure you are associating with her and spending lots of time and work on communication. Even simple things like stepping up and getting some millet, or hanging out and not reacting aggressively to you moving your hand. Maybe ever having her on top of her cage and you giving her treats in reward for acting positively in and around the cage for you. Some birds can just be cage aggressive too, but often can be trained out and worked with, Sunny was for the longest time when I first brought him home back in 2011.
 

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
Do you let her out of the cage? I would put a perch by the outside of her door and leave the door open so she can come out on her own. Many birds don’t like hands invading their personal space, but are more relaxed away from their cage. You can set up a play stand away from the cage and see if she will hang out on it. She might have to get used to it first, however. Watch her body language closely and make sure she associates you with only positive things. Save millet only for training, and see if she will will nibble on a long spray of millet as you hold it for her, or drop little pieces in her food dish when you walk by. You should also look up target training, which you can start while she is in her cage. Reading aloud to her by her cage is a good idea, and remember to never force her to do anything. How big is her cage? She might be more nervous if you changing her food or water if her cage is too small.
Hello!
I have made attempts to let her out of the cage several times, but she has never left the cage even when the two doors are open. Recently they have been open for awhile yet she is too afraid to leave the cage. I never thought of putting a perch outside of her cage so I will try that! I don’t know the exact dimensions of her cage but she flies around in it sometimes and it’s taller then me and very wide. I tried to make sure to get a big cage when I first got her.
 

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
I will write what I wrote in another post about gaining trust:


Try different activities around her such as reading out loud so she gets used to your voice, playing music, anything that you would normally do but around her cage. While you are doing this, I recommend having the cage door open so she comes out by herself.

You can also start offering her treats such as millet. I personally think millet is much better than sunflower seeds when starting (unless your bird doesn’t like millet) because it allows the bird to eat from a distance without having to get close to the hand.

I definitely agree with @Kiwi's Mom about reading to your bird :p
Thanks for your reply!
Cherrio actually just started to eat millet for the first time because whenever it would be offered to her in the cage she would never eat it, but she did for the first time recently! I will try reading to her at night now.:)
 

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
Think of her cage like her nest. If you are timid in going in and handling her, therefor being rarely in and around the cage she won't be used to having you around it. Try taking her out and letting her spend some time with you, outside the cage. Like @Tiel Feathers suggested, save the millet for training if it is a high drive treat. I stand by target training for trust training. Break it down step by step like it's her first day. Let her learn that when she associates with you it means rewards and rubs! Everyone loves good rubs :) Overall make sure you are associating with her and spending lots of time and work on communication. Even simple things like stepping up and getting some millet, or hanging out and not reacting aggressively to you moving your hand. Maybe ever having her on top of her cage and you giving her treats in reward for acting positively in and around the cage for you. Some birds can just be cage aggressive too, but often can be trained out and worked with, Sunny was for the longest time when I first brought him home back in 2011.
Hey!
This is very good advice and I appreciate your response. Cherrio and I have been working with communication a lot, as she learned to say her name and loves to sing songs that she has heard frequently. I can tell she is getting more comfortable with me and she isn’t very nervous when I’m near the cage, but if someone else is she starts to freak out. I will definitely try to get her more comfortable outside of the cage because she might be cage aggressive. Thank you!
 

Khizz

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
3/31/19
Messages
4,224
Hey!
This is very good advice and I appreciate your response. Cherrio and I have been working with communication a lot, as she learned to say her name and loves to sing songs that she has heard frequently. I can tell she is getting more comfortable with me and she isn’t very nervous when I’m near the cage, but if someone else is she starts to freak out. I will definitely try to get her more comfortable outside of the cage because she might be cage aggressive. Thank you!
If she sings and talks, then it could be that Cherrio is a boy? Usually females aren't big singers. If she does "heart wings" then it's likely 'she' is a boy! My handsome boy demonstrating nicely for you:

IMG_20200416_183054.jpg

I definitely recommend placing a perch leading from inside the cage to outside (like a rope perch). When a bird flies to something, it's commiting itself to landing on that thing. Whereas the option to walk tentatively gives the bird the option of testing the new thing and retreating. So an easy way to go in and out (plus the help of some millet clipped outside) helps a lot!
 

Khizz

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
3/31/19
Messages
4,224
Oh and regarding hands in the cage, mine still don't love it but it's now just a suspicious eyeing up rather than them madly flapping around. I found that just sitting by, resting a finger on the cage/through the bars helped. Over time I gradually got closer, and put more of my hand in. When they stopped being bothered about it I would get closer with my hand.
 

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
If she sings and talks, then it could be that Cherrio is a boy? Usually females aren't big singers. If she does "heart wings" then it's likely 'she' is a boy! My handsome boy demonstrating nicely for you:

View attachment 334534

I definitely recommend placing a perch leading from inside the cage to outside (like a rope perch). When a bird flies to something, it's commiting itself to landing on that thing. Whereas the option to walk tentatively gives the bird the option of testing the new thing and retreating. So an easy way to go in and out (plus the help of some millet clipped outside) helps a lot!
Oh my gosh! Cherrio just starting doing that about two months ago! She might be a boy you’re right!!!! Thank you so much for the news :)
 

rylanminer

Moving in
Joined
4/18/20
Messages
8
Real Name
Rylan Miner
Oh and regarding hands in the cage, mine still don't love it but it's now just a suspicious eyeing up rather than them madly flapping around. I found that just sitting by, resting a finger on the cage/through the bars helped. Over time I gradually got closer, and put more of my hand in. When they stopped being bothered about it I would get closer with my hand.
Thank you for sharing! I will definitely try to make these small steps to getting her more comfortable with my hands in the cage!
 

SkyLark

Jogging around the block
Joined
4/24/20
Messages
659
Location
The Milky Way
For gaining trust, I like to play songs on my computer while I'm doing something on the computer, like looking up cockatiel facts :D. I also like to let Corky watch my computer and look at it while I'm, say, looking up more cockatiel facts :)
 

Travis726

Strolling the yard
Joined
12/29/19
Messages
75
Real Name
Travis
Lots of good advice, be patient is the best advice I can give.. That and dont force him to do anything he doesnt want to do, dont "punish" him if he does something "bad" and be patient :p
 
  • Like
Reactions: tka
Top