Parrots Forever
Sanctuary & Rescue Foundation
   Home      PARROTS ARE ONE-PERSON ONLY PETS February 25, 2014
 
 
PARROTS ARE ONE-PERSON ONLY PETS
 
One of the biggest misconceptions out there is that parrots are one-person only pets and that this is a characteristic of many species. I have heard this too many times from both so-called parrot “experts” and non-experts alike. 
 
Are there companion parrots out there that only want to be with their favorite person? Yes, of course this happens. Does this happen with every companion parrot? No. Does this happen with more with some parrots species? It can. And there are a variety of reasons for this.
 
Myth: Companion parrots are one-person pets.
 
Fact: Not every companion parrot is a one-person pet.
 
Most companion parrots will have a favorite person that they would prefer to be with, but they will still be happy to interact with other people. Some companion parrots will only want to be with their favorite person, who is usually, but not always, their caregiver. 
 
Why does a companion parrot want to be with their favorite person more than others? Usually, in most homes that have a companion parrot, one person is the main caregiver to the parrot. The parrot learns that the caregiver represents food, freedom, and social interaction. The parrot may not have the opportunity for as much positive interaction with the other people in the home. If there are people living in the home who are indifferent to the parrot and never interact with the parrot or provide for the parrot’s needs, then why would that parrot want to have anything to do with those people? Some people in the home may be a little bit interested in the parrot, and may give the parrot sporadic and limited interaction The parrot would likely not bond with those people as strongly as with the main caregiver. 
 
So why would it be such a surprise that companion parrots choose to be with their favorite person over others when the others are less inclined to interact in a meaningful way with them?
 
We must remember two very important facts. First, companion parrots are not domesticated. They may be tame, but they are still wild animals (except Budgies and Cockatiels). Second, companion parrots cannot be spayed or neutered like dogs and cats. Hormones, and the associated desire to find a mate and procreate, are ALWAYS a factor once the parrot becomes sexually mature. With no other parrots around, a person may become the focus of the parrot’s search for a mate. Relationship dynamics can become complicated. If the caregiver raised the parrot from a young age, then the parrot may view the caregiver as a parent figure. As the parrot matures, the caregiver may be rejected in favor of another person in the household. This move from dependency on a parent to independence and seeking a life partner is a natural progression for the parrot. When a companion parrot is brought into a new home where two or more people live, then depending on how that companion parrot is socialized within that home, the parrot can learn to interact with most people. Because parrots, like people, are individuals, they tend to pick their own friends. It is possible that the favourite person can become someone in the home who is not the main caregiver, and that the favourite person can change several times in a parrot’s life.
 
Parrots are very emotional creatures. Parrots can and often do go into mourning when they lose their favorite person for any reason. A parrot may be given to a new home or to a rescue because the main caregiver is no longer be able to properly care for the parrot, or because the caregiver has passed away. Either way, the parrot now enters a new stage in their life. The parrot must adjust to new people and a new environment. Some adjust quicker than others, but most can eventually learn to interact with new people.
 
 
 
 
       Wesley J Savoy Parrots Forever Sanctuary & Rescue Foundation, February 25, 2014
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