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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

Talk Parrots has been pretty quiet lately, so I figured I'd post here. Kuzco, my lovebird, is getting ready to travel across the country with me for work and we've been working on getting used to the carrier, politeness with strangers, etc. but in all this, I've noticed that he doesn't play. He has the cage door open most of the day so he hangs out with my budgies when I'm away from home, but when I come home, he's a total Velcro bird. We are staying at my family's house this weekend (ugh) and he's having to spend a lot more time in cage because my mom isn't a fan. So I bought him a much bigger cage to keep at her house so he has space to fly around a bit. Unfortunately he hates it, but I'm sure he'lol get used to it with time. The bigger thing I've noticed is that he doesn't play. He just wants to be with me non stop and when he can't be, he just sits there, or chews on his rope perch out of frustration.

In his cage right now are a couple foraging toys, some of those balls with the bell inside, some all natural destructables, some paper shredders, a coconut hut with a raw pasta toy, and his happy hut. All of these are things he will play with out of cage with me if I'm actively engaging him, but once he's in his cage, it's like nothing else matters until he's with me.

He's about 3 years old and spent his entire life alone in a cage at the pet store with one shreddable toy, which I don't remember him really touching much. I've had him for a year. It seems like in my efforts to socialize him, I didn't realize he'd never been taught independent play. He will be spending more time in age once we get moved, so I want to make sure he's able to enjoy his cage time. What can I do to remedy this? He's got to be the only lovebird on earth who doesn't play. I feel sorry for him.
 

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Some lovebirds play more than others.

I have two rescues -- Pedro and Poppy.
Poppy is much more inclined to play with the toys in-cage than Pedro although he will engage in shredding activities from time to time. Pedro generally sits and observes what's going on.

Peachy, who is my Velcro lovebird -- wants to be on me/with me all the time if I'm in sight.
However, when I'm not, he plays quite happily with all the toys in his cage, moving from one to another to give them all
equal opportunity play-time. :giggle:

Maybe when you are playing with Kuzco, you can start playing with him "inside" his cage.
Have his cage door open but play with his toys inside the cage and see if you can interest him in playing with your while in the cage.
Hopefully, if that becomes a normal part of your time together then when you aren't around and he's caged he'll decide the toys are fun to interact with.

You can also try moving the toys around in the cage to different places to make them seem more "new".

Good luck and let us know how your efforts work out.

By the way, we now have a social forum called "Lovebird Lovers" here on Talk Budgies!
Lovebird Lovers - Talk Budgies Forums
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Love having a social forum for lovies, that's a great idea.

Yeah he just doesn't seem happy in his cage right now. Lots of high pitched chirping, trying to get to the side closest to me, a lot of pacing. The only time he's not hanging off the bars is when he's gnawing on his happy hut out of frustration. Poor guy is not having fun in there. Is there anythingI can do to help him relax? It's stressful for both of us.
 

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I fully agree with Deb. You can entice Kuzco to play with the toys while he is inside of the cage by placing your hand there and showing him the toys and actually play with him. It's good to use positive reinforcement when you see him getting interested in a toy and investigating it. And as he progresses and starts to play with a toy, you can then slowly take your hand out of the cage and still be close by and watch him play and encouraging him with some praise words. During this training and as he progresses more you can then start to watch him from afar till he is perfectly fine and playing on his own while you are not in the same room as he is.
My lovebirds love anything that is shreddable and toys that make noise, like bell toys, for example.

You could cover the cage in three sides to see if he gets more comfortable on his new cage and also give him some cuddles while he is inside the cage. I hope he settles soon and feels better in his new cage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for this. I've been working this morning on playing with the toys in the cage with him. He mostly moves them out of the way so he can get to my hand and demand scritches, silly boy. When I first got him, he was crazy scared and aggressive. I never thought I'd see the day where I have to physically pry him off me to get him in the cage. I hope he doesn't hate me after all this!
 

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Kuzco will never hate you -- he loves you!

Be patient with him as he learns to play with his toys inside the cage as Ana indicated. Over time, it will become familiar to him and he'll be better off being able to entertain himself when you aren't around. :hug:
 
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