Common parrot training mistakes
Since parrots are such complex and intelligent creatures, owners have to consistently work hard at gaining and keeping their trust. Anything less, usually results in a very frightened and biting parrot. While a bite from a conure is painful, a bite from a large Macaw may land you in the hospital.
Without this trust, you will never be able to properly train your parrot. The quickest way to achieve this would be to buy your bird as a fully weaned baby from a good breeder. Your parrot should already be used to human interaction and may be willing to please you immediately. Parrots that have been re-homed or adopted from rescue sanctuaries are for the most part abused or neglected by their previous owners making it much harder to gain their trust and train.
People who buy their parrots for the first time, often for the wrong reason and with high expectations, are usually disappointed. They see this beautiful exotic bird at a live show or at a friends and they think “I have to have one.” When they arrive home with the parrot and don’t get what they expect, frustration sets in, making it unbearable for the owner and the bird. This can affect the owners attitude towards training and the parrots willingness to learn, making the lessons more time consuming and less effective. It takes proper knowledge, skill, and attitude to train a parrot and results will vary since every parrot is different.
Don’t place such high expectations on your parrot and the results will be much more effective.
Training a new baby
Not a good idea at first. spend time getting to know your baby bird and form a bond before you start any training sessions. Go slowly and be consistent. Your first goal should be to get your parrot to accept a treat from you. Eventually you will be able to scratch his chest or pet him on the head. Before long he will come up to you and step on to your hand. If your parrot is a fully weaned baby, this should happen fairly quickly. But if he has been re-homed or abused, it could take considerably longer. Never punish your parrot during this process or you could destroy the trust you spent so much time building.
By getting to know your parrot in this way, you are actually training him through taming
Screaming or hitting your parrot
Always train your parrot using positive reinforcement. A good example of this would be clicker training. You tell your parrot to step up or step off. Keep in mind that once you say it, be prepared to follow through and make him step up or off. Every time your parrot does this, click your clicker and give him a treat. Eventually he will understand and step up or off just to get that treat. Always complement him using the same phrase. Good Boy would be a good one. Eventually he will understand what this means and he will know he has done something good.
Never scream at or hit your parrot as this type of behavior can result in aggressive and unmanageable behavior.
As most parrot training is based on observation and experience, This kind of training may not work for you. Each parrot responds differently to the same type of training, Something a lot of owners overlook. Think of your baby parrot as a child. Not every child learns the same way, sometimes you have to try different methods to produce the same results. You will find that if you are creative and persistent, your parrot will become a joyful and loving member of your family. He may even impress you with how quickly he learns the tricks you teach him.