Parakeet Hand Training
Hand training a parakeet is a very easy and fun experience. There are many tricks and fun things that can be done with your parakeet after you have hand trained your bird. With a little time and patience a parakeet can be hand trained fairly easy. There are some factors to remember when deciding about hand training a parakeet. Remember that a younger parakeet will learn quicker then an older parakeet.
The key to hand training a parakeet is the time involved. Parakeets will be hand trained quicker if you spend more time with them. If you only devote one day a week the parakeet will take a lot longer to learn and get comfortable with the concept of hand training. The first step to hand training is to simply gain the trust of the parakeet. Spending time with your parakeet by playing games and getting them comfortable with you is the best way to gain trust. With trust, it's just a matter of time before the parakeet is walking on your hand, shoulder or head and bonding with you.
Calm and Patient
Patience and keeping your cool are probably the most important element to hand training a parakeet. Raised voices, yelling and jerky movements will only scare the bird and set hand training back a bit. Try and always talk in a calm, soft, soothing voice that'll entice the parakeet to want to be near you. If you wish to hand train your parakeet start talking in a soft voice the minute you bring your parakeet home, this will get them comfortable with you and your voice style and help in the hand training process.
Slow and Steady
Many people believe hand training involves just shoving your hand in the cage and the parakeet will hop on. That is far from the truth. Start off slow. Sit with the parakeet talk to them and bring the hand in the cage slowly. Younger parakeets are more likely to adapt to your hand then older parakeets. If you have just moved the parakeet to a new cage or they are in an new environment make sure that the parakeet is calm before proceeding with hand training.
Once the parakeet is calm and comfortable with their environment start slowly. Place your hand inside the cage but not right near the parakeet. The parakeet might flap around, fly around the cage or hop on your arm but they will soon settle down. Soon the parakeet will become comfortable with your hand and arm. Slowly move your hand or finger closer to the parakeet. If you do this quickly they might become frightened and fly off.
All parakeets are different. Some might hop on your hand after only one try but others might take several times. Just watch your parakeet for signs of aggression and move slowly. Soon the parakeet will become accustomed to your hand and hop it. As long as you are calm, patient and talking to them constantly hand training is possible.
Training to Hop on Your Finger
Now that your parakeet is okay with your hand the next step is to train them to hop on your finger. Make sure that the parakeet is comfortable with your hand and place your index finger close to their feet at about chest level. In a calm but sturdy voice say a command word such as "Up" or "Hop". Some parakeets will hop up right away others might take some time. If your parakeet seems reluctant try using some seed to entice them to hop on your finger.
A Step Further in Hand Training
Now that your parakeet really trusts you, you can help them hand train in other ways. Some of the fun ways to further the hand training segment is to lay on your back and allow your parakeet to walk up your belly. Slowly pet their heads and body and get them comfortable with you. This will help in other training segments.
Remember hand training a parakeet is different depending upon your parakeet. All birds are different and the time involved will be different depending on the bird. It is a good idea to spend at least 20 minutes a day with your parakeet, petting, talking and bonding with them. That way they are comfortable with you and will trust you.
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