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IAmStarby 08-30-2016 12:44 AM

Conflicting Advice, and Taming Questions
Like the title suggests, I've seen conflicting advice about budgie training and wanted more points of view. I'm in a sort of plateau with taming/bonding with my budgie Magnus. He'll step up for millet, and I can take him out of the cage as long as he's getting millet. As soon as it is gone, he's back in the cage. He will not stay with me outside of a treat. All he does all day is play with one swing. There is a play area for him outside of his cage, but he doesn't use it. I've seen differing advice on out of cage time. Some say to let them come out on their own time, others say to close the cage and force them to be out. I'm afraid if he won't bond with me and come out of the cage he'll get no exercise and not be very happy. Should I take him to an unfamiliar room? Should I close his cage and force him to explore? How do I get him to like me without millet?

Also, it is entirely possible that he was bonded with his previous owner. (He flew onto my mom's head while she was outside and nobody reported a missing bird, so I have no information.) Especially considering he came to me knowing how to say a phrase. Does that mean he won't bond with me? Thank you for any answers. I'm getting sad we aren't making progress, and at this point I feel like I'm overfeeding him millet since I'm so desperate to get him to play and be with me.

A little backstory, I have had him for a month and a half but he's proven to be extremely adaptable and not scared of people or hands at all. He's not scared or timid, the only time he's been scared is from a new perch (which he isn't afraid of anymore) and once when flying he hit a mirror. (he was fine, just scared. That mirror has since been covered). I just feel that he genuinely has no interest in me, or being outside the cage. Sorry for the info dump, I just need help! Especially your opinion and any first hand experience stories, because if you link me an article I've most likely already read it haha!

aluz 08-30-2016 07:49 AM

At this point, you don't need to take your budgie to an unfamiliar room, that would likely add some stress on him, since he doesn't know the room and he can fly in a panic and crash land in the process.
You can close the door to his cage and place the play area right next to the cage or on top to the cage, if possible. This will give your budgie a sense of security while he gets more used to having out of cage time.
As he becomes more confident of his surroundings, he will start to explore the room and will gain appreciation for the time he has out of the cage.

Personally, I don't use food to train my pet birds, I mainly use my voice to connect and bond with them. Then again, I have been doing this for most of my life and it comes as second nature to me.
You can slowly wean your budgie off the millet during a training session and you can use more of your voice in a calm, positive, encouraging and reassuring way.
Using praise words in the right tone as a reward works like a charm and for your case, you can use a favourite toy as a reward to substitute for the millet.

From your description of how you got the budgie and the fact that he has learned words, it's clear that he was a very cherished pet and he most likely was closely bonded to the previous owner(s).

By continuing to interact with your budgie on a daily basis, you will eventually earn his trust and chances are high you will be good friends.
All things considered, one month is not that long and this budgie has already been through a lot, being lost and rescued by you, having a different family all this should be taken into account.
With patience and love and by taking your budgie's cues, you will know how to proceed with training. Getting frustrated and being negative will only hamper the bonding process and it's extremely important to provide a welcoming and positive atmosphere during the training sessions and every time you interact with your budgie.

Good luck! :)

mexicoandice 08-30-2016 12:02 PM

:iagree: with Aluz! Training a budgie takes a lot of hard work and patience! :) I wish you good luck in this journey.:) Your Magnus is so cute by the way! (I looked at a picture of him in another thread you started.)

shaz128blue 08-30-2016 03:24 PM

Another great thread thank you

Good luck with the training xx

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