I can't seem to find my username from when I first rescued Robirda from a city park (Robirda's a he, the name stuck), so I've created a new one.
Current situation: I've moved in with my partner, who has a very large, very determined, very intelligent cat. We were very concerned about this and we've given the bird his own room. We installed a five-foot-tall storm shutter on the outside of the door that's closed with hooks and eyes on the bottom and top. We keep the inner, solid door closed when we're not home, and the shutter closed and latched when we're in the next room.
We're also in and out of the bird's room all the time (the laundry's in there, the pet mice are also in there in the closet). I didn't want the bird to be shut up in a room and lonely as my experience with my old house was that he prefers when there's a lot of commotion and seems nervous and unhappy when it's quiet.
HOWEVER. Between the fact that his cage is now by a walkway and people are constantly walking close to it, and the fact that this monster cat is constantly nearby wandering around _looking_ at him, I don't think my bird is feeling very calm. There's a lot of screaming ACK ACK ACK ACK ACK (it's the sound right at the 39 second mark in this video: 30 Minutes Budgies Parakeets Singing, Chirping. Reduce stress blood pressure heart diseases Healing - YouTube
) when people walk past or are making weird sounds or he has to deal with the fact that the cat exists. It's not that I don't like the sound (it's no louder than the CHEEP! CHEEP! CHEEP! flock call that he makes when I'm out of the room, or worse, when I'm in the room but my PARTNER is audibly somewhere else ignoring the parakeet), it's that he seems really freaked out and it often takes me going into the room, shutting the door, and talking to him quietly for a while to calm him down. I'd like to make his life less scary! I'd also like to not fall back on giving him 100% one-on-one attention for twenty minutes when he freaks out because I feel like that sets up a weird incentive for him to be more freaked out.
Picture of the door below: my opinion is that while my partner's cat is strong he also weighs about 16 pounds and will not get through the door. I'm also working on discouraging the cat from camping out in front of the door licking his chops at my poor bird (with my partner's permission, there's a spray bottle involved).
Please excuse mess in the photo - the towels were an attempt to block view of the cat a little, and we're still visibly unpacking everywhere. So maybe the bird will be calmer when the house is calmer, too.
p.s. I don't want to sound too mean about this cat - I actually really love him, but he's a big old tomcat with an outdoor history, and if I were a budgie having him around would probably feel about like living in a horror movie...