When to start training? - Talk Parrots Forums

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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 07:50 AM Thread Starter
 
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When to start training?

Hello, everyone

Here I come asking for advice already, please, bear with me.

We have had our WFA at home all of two days, he was hand-raised, is not hand-shy, flock calls to us, grinds is beak, ate from our hands (hubby's and mine) after ten minutes of being in the new cage.

He seems to think that a hand in the cage means 'something interesting is about to happen' and has no problems whatsoever if he accidentally brushes against our fingers moving around, sometimes he does what I call an 'half step up' resting one foot on our finger but, at this point doesn't dare to step up completely.

We can't wait to begin training but wouldn't want to push him too hard too soon, should we wait a week? More? Less?

Any suggestion and advice is welcome
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 09:01 AM


 
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I am unsure what you mean by "training". Since the bird seems to be comfortable, offering your hand to step up on and giving a treat is bonding/training the bird. I judge what if I'm moving to fast by the bird's reaction, if the bird is coming to you/seems happy to see you, then you are moving at the right pace. If the bird scurries to the other side of the cage or growls at you, then you are moving too fast. Training should be fun and interesting to a parrot. It should also be a time of establishing a relationship. I consider even just having a bird come and take a treat from your hands "training". I wouldn't "force" a step-up yet though, because the bird seems a little unsure.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
 
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Sorry for being confusing! I meant training to step up.

Thanks for your advice, we'll let him set the pace, then, for now offering foods and toys and talking with him and gauging his reaction.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 11:22 AM


 
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I would start target/clicker training right away, especially with a bird of that size/intelligence and the fact that they can become hormone-caused aggressive when in their teen years.
Basically start out by conditioning with the clicker. Go out and purchase a clicker (usually in the dog section of stores) and get a bunch of treats (try for something healthy) and just sit there with him and click, treat, click, treat. You have to start off by making him understand that when the clicker clicks he is going to get a treat.

Then you can start training him and molding his behaviour. Whenever he does something that you want to encourage you click immediately when he does the behaviour and then give him a treat. He will quickly know what you want and you can teach him to do things on command too eventually.

Not only will this help him use his brain in a captive environment but it's also a really good way to build trust and bond with the bird.



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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 11:49 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you! I'll get a clicker straight away.

Given that I was home this afternoon, and he's very curious I decided to try opening the door of his cage (it's in a secure room) and see what he'll do.

He looked around, sat half out of the cage for a while, clambered all over the cage's sides, flapped his wings...and at some point he realized the only way to reach the perch on the top of the cage was to step up on the wood perch I was offering him.

He stepped up quite willingly multiple times in the last couple of hours and now is perched on top of his cage, preening.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 12:56 PM


 
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Never to early to start training. I start within 2 days after the bird has arrived. Better to make it part of an established routine from day one, when they are still accepting the new environment, then to try to add it in later and meet resistance.

Continue with hands in the cage and associating that with good things because it may prevent cage aggression later with puberty. Clicker training does work very well.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, 4thebirds. I'll definitely keep working so that he associates human hands with good things. I've not much previous experience with parrots but I've always worked with our dogs to prevent bowl possessivenes, the principle is the same, I think...
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 02:48 PM


 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marina View Post
Thanks, 4thebirds. I'll definitely keep working so that he associates human hands with good things. I've not much previous experience with parrots but I've always worked with our dogs to prevent bowl possessivenes, the principle is the same, I think...
Yes but cage aggression is much more common with parrots than bowl possessiveness with dogs. It is a territory thing....related to hormones. Usually not the case with dogs since most pets are neutered or spayed.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
 
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I'll keep that in mind, thanks!
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2014, 03:02 PM


 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marina View Post
I'll keep that in mind, thanks!
Sure thing. I heard amazons can go through a bad puberty phase that can last about 2 years.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-24-2014, 04:08 AM



 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4thebirds View Post
Sure thing. I heard amazons can go through a bad puberty phase that can last about 2 years.
As soon as an Amazon hits maturity it is like an explosion of hormones They also (especially the males) have a very angry few months during the breeding season every single year once they have hit maturity!

As for Puck, he's a hand raised bird who is very much so comfortable in your care already it seems. You can start with him right away! I have a blog in my signature (which I really need to write more in, been busy!) and I've wrote a few bits and bobs on working with clicker training so if you fancy reading that it may help you a little

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