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What training words do you use?

M&M Ninja

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I plan to meet with a breeder soon and if a good match is made, I'll have a new companion to bring home. In the meantime, I've been reading blogs of parrot trainers and behaviorists to refresh my knowledge of good parrot rearing. Something I've begun to wonder is what terms other people use for their requests.

For my dogs, we use 'go to bed' to send them to a bed or a station. We use the traditional 'come, stay, down, sit.' ‘Touch’ means nose to target stick. We use 'up' to raise to all fours from a down position and 'stand' to go from sitting to standing. We have fun stuff like 'turn around', 'BANG' (for play dead), 'get in' (to come to my side) etc. We've also worked through a ton of baggage with our bark-aholic. She came to us at 5 years old and had been conditioned to bark her head off to communicate her needs. The most she does now - usually when she gets nervous or has decided she REALLY wants to go for a walk - is pant loudly and sometimes whine.

For a bird, here is what I'm thinking:
'Perch' - to go back to your perch
'Step up' - step onto my hand or the offered perch-like object
'Step down' - step off
'Turn around' - turn in a circle
‘Wave’ – raise a foot

I don't know what has happened to my imagination, but I'm struggling to come up with the other requests I want. Do you guys use 'come' to indicate you want them to fly to you? And 'stay' when you want them to sit still somewhere? Do you use a cage specific word for going back into the cage? What other tricks and terms have you taught your bird?
 

sunnysmom

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Elvis and I somehow developed a bit of sign language. When I want him to some, a tap twice (usually my shoulder). He will actually tap twice if he is telling me he wants to stay somewhere- like on his cage. And for stay, I usually just put my hand up for stay. I think any words are probably fine to use. I do say "step up" and he'll repeat it, more often than he does it. LOL. I also say "kisses" and he gives kisses.
 

Zara

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And 'stay' when you want them to sit still somewhere?
:lol:

Do you use a cage specific word for going back into the cage?
I say ¨XXX bedtime¨ and tap their cage. I have stopped doing this with Sydney as he thinks there is another option and doesn´t come :lol:

For recall, (I have small birds) I hold a pointing finger with a straight arm and when calling their name I lift my hand slightly. For Adelie I say ¨come back¨ this stemmed from telling her to get off the other cages as a baby, so now that´s her phrase.

I don´t teach tricks or anything like that.
 

Sandra Gibson

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When I open Mango's cage I put my finger out and say come and he comes out and hops right on my finger, at bedtime I say nite nite and he hops back in and I cover his cage, in the morning I always say good morning as i'm taking off his cover, (I know that's not a training word) I just like him to recognize its me, he is only 3 1/2 months old and I cant believe how smart he is, I just love him MANGO.jpg
 

Imogena

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I think my Edgar reacts mostly to signs. When I give him my hand I can say on my hand or please Edgar step up or do you want to go out of your cage? And he steps up. The words are not so important to him
 

Leih

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I think you'll really just develop your own language and routines with each other. I use "step up?", "no bite", and "nice" the most. I also wave my hand in a certain way to ask my lovebird to fly to me. My linnies and I do a greeting where I put my fingertip to their cage and they lightly beak it and I make a kiss at them. Sounds crazy writing it! :roflmao:
 

Hawk12237

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Depends on the bird, I don't always use training words..
With grey though...he understands a lot of terms...like, ok bud you hang out and stay right here for a minute....the response I get back....
"Woof! Woof woof"!"
Lol. ... Ok rover, you sit there on perch and be a good doggy!
 

M&M Ninja

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Sounds crazy writing it!
I think it sounds awesome. Thank you to everybody for your input and sharing your routines. I guess I'll have to see what 'trick' needs arise and then brainstorm a term I can use that isn't regularly used to indicate other things.

I try to be really clear in my communication with the pups and want to do the same with the bird. I know animals are largely reading our body language (just as we read their's), but I have also seen verbal cues being helpful with shaping behavior with the dogs.

when calling their name I lift my hand slightly
I like that. I think I read about something similar on the parrot wizard site. I think he calls them to him by using their names. That's helpful in a house with dogs who come to 'come'.
 

Dona

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Here's something I wrote a few days ago:

I noticed that Gigi often flew to the sofa arm when I was sitting on the sofa. So I started saying "I want that bird right here!" while enthusiastically tapping the sofa arm. Now she nearly always flies there when I say it and tap. I also called her a "shoulder girl" when she popped down from the back of the sofa. So now I can ask "Shoulder girl?" and she will usually hop there. I also say "stretchy wings!" when she stretches out a wing so she does it over and over. When Gigi gets really excited she flies a loop around the living room while doing contact calls. I clap and cheer her on so she does it again and again. Yesterday she had that look in her eyes while standing on her cage door and I said "Be a fly-baby!" and she took a noisy loop around the living room. So all of Gigi's tricks started out as normal behaviors that I named and encouraged. But it's impressive. She seems to understand so much of what I say.
 

EkkieLu

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My crew hears the word No quite a bit!
 

Capt T.

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We use "Up Up" for stepping up.I've never had to use acommand for step down, Salty just naturally knows when he's supposed to step down.
For all his ither tricjs, I have a key word, so he knows what I am asking for, or what trick is coming . Circles, to turn in circles (duh), Ladder for hisbig ladder, Slide for his slide. Where Is It for when I hide a treat under a hand cloth, Cups, whenhe does his stacking cups trik, Play dead for that, Go Shopping for his little shopping cart trick, Colors for when he does the colored ring trick, Flippys for when he does the tricks with the large rings, Harness when its time to put it on, and OFF when it time to take it off. Roll Over ( witha hand signal) when I want him to roll over, Play piano when its time to do that, with a hand signal if I want him to sing while he is doing that, Play music for playing the xylophone, etc, etc, etc. Always a good idea to have a verbal command and a hand signal, so your parrot knows what you expect him to do.
 

Icey

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I use step up, dance, high five, peekaboo night night
Frankie uses come here, hold on, don't fall, be careful
Sometimes we just read each others body language and I will go in his room by his cage and he will come straight out on me.
If we are playing in another room in the house I know if he stops and looks at his feet then at me he has to go poop, so he will step up to back in to do his business.I have to wait for him of course and take him back out for more playtime.
 

DoubleTake

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My sun conures
-Setup: get on my hand
-potty: see if they need to go potty, they arent strictly to go on command nor are they trained to hold it. They just know there is a better chance of getting a step up command if they go potty. Apollo will fake it to let me know he tried. Sometimes instead of potty, i say "make it rain"
-All the way: I will point and tell my boys to go all the way which tells them to go in something or go over there. Use to use this command when they were in my parent's outdoor aviary. Would tell them to go to the door so I could have them step up.
-Get down: when I see them on something they know they arent supposed to be on.
-Kiss kiss/give me a kiss: will prompt them to either go in for a kiss or blow a kiss

My lovebird
stubborn girl wont listen to anything besides kiss kiss. I KNOW SHE UNDERSTAND ME. She's the spoiled one...

Usually a dirty look from me with the stink eye will tell them to behave. Sometimes the boys will walk back from where they came mumbling at me.
 

Princessbella

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I plan to meet with a breeder soon and if a good match is made, I'll have a new companion to bring home. In the meantime, I've been reading blogs of parrot trainers and behaviorists to refresh my knowledge of good parrot rearing. Something I've begun to wonder is what terms other people use for their requests.

For my dogs, we use 'go to bed' to send them to a bed or a station. We use the traditional 'come, stay, down, sit.' ‘Touch’ means nose to target stick. We use 'up' to raise to all fours from a down position and 'stand' to go from sitting to standing. We have fun stuff like 'turn around', 'BANG' (for play dead), 'get in' (to come to my side) etc. We've also worked through a ton of baggage with our bark-aholic. She came to us at 5 years old and had been conditioned to bark her head off to communicate her needs. The most she does now - usually when she gets nervous or has decided she REALLY wants to go for a walk - is pant loudly and sometimes whine.

For a bird, here is what I'm thinking:
'Perch' - to go back to your perch
'Step up' - step onto my hand or the offered perch-like object
'Step down' - step off
'Turn around' - turn in a circle
‘Wave’ – raise a foot

I don't know what has happened to my imagination, but I'm struggling to come up with the other requests I want. Do you guys use 'come' to indicate you want them to fly to you? And 'stay' when you want them to sit still somewhere? Do you use a cage specific word for going back into the cage? What other tricks and terms have you taught your bird?
I have a cockatiel and we are still trying to figure out who is training whom. I use 'up' to get her to step up and "get over here" when she refuses. When I need her to go into her cage when I am working off hours, I turn on a light on her cage and she knows to go in. And she knows what no means. I do not do tricks with her because she thinks that she is above that. But I do holiday cards with her and she knows that if I put her on a prop, she has to stay there until I am done. She is working on training me. When she doesn't want to do something, (like go into her cage), she says no. When she goes into her cage and she is displeased, she shows me her butt. When she sees that I am tired and falling asleep and the light is on, she will chirp until I shut off the light and close the door to her cage, and when she wants scritches, she tugs on my top and puts her head down. When she wants me to get her, she has a chirp for that and is displeased when I don't get her and she has to fly to me. And when eating people food, she wants to be hand fed. I am not sure if she thinks that I am fully trained yet but she keeps trying. Good luck with your new bird.
 

Ephy

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I don't have parrots, but always felt that saying my intention to our birds cleared any confusion or fear.
I always say "step up" or when he decides not to listen, i then use his name "kiwi, step up"
And he does so immediately.

Im very lucky, because my House Sparrow has always trimmed his own toe nails and beak.

Sometimes, he needs a little reminder. I will say..."trim your beak, trim your beak" by the next day or 2, any overgrowth on his top beak will be gone. So we praise "aww, what a pretty beak" same goes for his toe nails.

I always say "take a bath" when its that time, always say "bedtime" then they know its time for them to go in their cages and get ready for bed.

Everytime i enter the birds room to get something or do something at night after they have been covered or asleep, i repeat.."bedtime babies, its okay, bedtime" until I leave the room, especially if I suddenly make noise I know they are not prepared for.

Anything that is new gets introduced to Kiwi as... "whassat!! " insert ridiculously crazy happy expression followed by "AWww look its for kiwi!!" If he is very cautious, i give the new object kisses and say "awww., good birdy" till he comes over.

What seems to help us the most is by simply repeating key words to indicate our actions.

I also try to encourage a small cheap sound in place of when Kiwi starts screaching. Once he has repeated my sound and pitch level, I go over and give him attention while repeating the same quiet alternative to his loud screaching. Doesnt always work, but it helps.
 
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