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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > Taming and Bonding


Taming and Bonding Taming and Bonding is all about helping your budgie learn to TRUST you. This requires time and patience and does not happen overnight.

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  #1  
Old 08-20-2016, 10:03 AM
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Default How long is too long?

Hello again!
I am just wondering how long is too long for a budgie(s) to be in their cage?
I've gotten my two budgies and they have stayed in their cage for a little over 5 weeks now, and still untamed (Im still taming them). I was thinking that I'd have to tame them first to be able to get them out of the cage safely and not to get them more tramautised.., I also researched about it and people say that you should tame them first and then letting them out.
So how long is too long? I would love to see them fly around the room but they're still not tamed yet (my two budgies are still scared and still steps back and runs away a bit although one of them does step on my finger/hands when I'm offering food to them and sometimes, flies to my hand, and the other does eat from my hands too, sometimes puts one foot on my hand but is way more afraid/timid than the other) and I don't want to clip their wings. :/
I often feel really bad to see them in their cage for awhile now and I hope Im not doing something bad. ><

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  #2  
Old 08-20-2016, 10:19 AM
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In order to make the out of cage experience less stressful for all involved, it would be best if your budgies had a good grasp of the step up command.
This would facilitate the process of coming out and getting back into the cage, not to mention the "rescuing" process, if they happen to fly and land on high place which is difficult to reach.
If you get your budgies used to a routine, with time they can come out and get back into the cage on their own.
Still for many other reasons (where health is concerned), not just for allowing them to have out of cage time, it would be best to work on having them at the very least finger tamed.
When you think that your budgies are fully settled and used to the room they are in and if this room has been bird proofed in order to reduce the chances of an accident, you can start by having the cage's door open and attaching a perch on the cage's bars (on the outside part of the cage) near the door. Having a little play area set up near the cage with a couple of toys and favourite treat will also tempt your budgies into stepping out of the safety and comfort of their cage.
With time, your budgies will increasingly get more confident and will take full advantage of their out of cage activities.

Good luck!
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Old 08-20-2016, 09:04 PM
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Hi, I do agree with Aluz on the fact that it is much BETTER for them to be able to step up before coming out, and it certainly makes it much less stressful, but I would just like to add that it is possible to have untamed budgies with regular, unstressful out of cage time. My boys have not yet mastered the step up command, but as long as I have plenty of time, they are still allowed regular out of cage time that is usually not a big deal for either me or them. But please, do not by any means think that I am undermining or pushing away Ana's advice! She knows a lot more about budgies than me, so if you are going to pay more attention to someone, make it her!
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Old 08-21-2016, 04:49 AM
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Aluz has offered you the best advice.
As you are working on training them, it would be best to wait until you have mastered the step up command for them to go back in to make everything that much easier for you.

My birds aren't step up trained and I let them out most evenings and at the weekends. By feeding the birds at a scheduled time helps me ensure that they will be ready for their food when I want them back in their cages.
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:21 AM
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I agree with all advice so far

Keep in mind that they may not want to come out if they are not yet comfortable with you--many birds don't.

If you would like to try to give them out of cage time without them being tame, a perch outside the cage would help to get them more comfortable with the outside world, as Aluz said.

Best of luck!
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Old 08-21-2016, 10:31 AM
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I agree with aluz that it is best when your birds are trained to step-up.
Not only does it make it easier if you need to rescue them, you've accomplished the first step so you will be better able to handle them for health checks, etc.

That said, I've used positive reinforcement training to teach birds reluctant to step up to go back into their cages because they know they will get a reward when they do so.

Initially, when I was ready for the birds to go back in their cages, I would first dim the lights and pull down the shades in the room. If the radio or TV was on, I turned it off.

Then I would stand by their cage and ringing the bell on one of their toys while telling them, "It's time to go in your cage now!"

Once they went back into the cage, they were given a small bit of millet.

This method worked well and they would go in the cage when asked to do so without the lights being dimmed or the blinds lowered and the TV or radio could stay on.

Getting the millet reward is the best part of "going back home"

This method can be utilized while you continue to work on the step-up command with your budgies.
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Old 08-21-2016, 02:39 PM
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Hi there, you've received some great advice here . When I had Twigs, he was basically a parent raised wild budgie. He learned that stepping up was the way to get out of his cage. At first I made sure not to let him out unless I felt I had enough time. He learned to go back in with voice commands (cue word) and him seeing my arm pointing into his cage. If he really didn't want to go in it would take a little longer, but he was smart and initially learned what it meant very quickly. I think that also dimming the lights and turning off all sound like Deborah did would teach "in" even quicker by really sending a clear message .
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