How to encourage chewing? - Talk Parrots Forums

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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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How to encourage chewing?

My Grey, Baby, doesn't like to chew on his toys or perches. I was cleaning his cage today and one of the chew toys actually had a fine layer of dust on it! How can I encourage him to gnaw on stuff? His beak is getting a little long.

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 09:48 PM
 
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Have you tried foraging toys? You can start by offering his favorite treat wrapped in a little piece of paper, and get him used to shredding the paper to get food. Then start making it harder from there, and he may learn that chewing = potential treats? Dunno if it would work, but there's my idea!



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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 10:41 PM


 
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How old is Baby? Did he/she ever like toys of any kind? If so, what type?

I don't know if I'll have other ideas or not, but I thought I would ask those questions. It seems to me that Jenny's idea is very good. I'm going to try to introduce Daisy to foraging soon. She is a 13 year old Maximillian pionus who used to be a breeder, but her mate died. Now she is my daughter's pet. She has not previously played with toys. The other day, I did notice her chewing on a pine cone for the first time.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 01:23 AM Thread Starter
 
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He's 9 years old. I don't think he's ever liked toys from the pet store, but he used to like shredding paper, and he loves chewing through food parts that we don't eat, like corn cobs, apple cores, and watermelon rinds.

Jenny, I love that idea. I will get on it tomorrow. Good thing I know how to make origami boxes Haha!

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 04:01 AM


 
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Since he has already shown a fondness for shredding paper, Jenny's idea will be even more likely to work with him. I guess I would only further suggest trying toys with paper parts as well as other types of materials to see if perhaps he wouldn't investigate the other materials while shredding the paper.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-22-2010, 09:34 AM


 
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You can also try pine cones with seeds and nuts stuffed in between the scales... does he have any favorites>> corn niblets, peas, carrot bits...whatever he likes and stuff them in good so he has to work to get them out.. maybe at first just place loosely so he gets the idea tho.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-22-2010, 11:32 PM
 
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To teach foraging, I offer a treat to the bird, then have it watch me put the treat in or on one of it's toys. I do this everyday, and gradually the bird starts to explore it's toys, looking for treats


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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-23-2010, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
 
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Love your ideas, everyone!

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-28-2010, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hi everyone, I'm back. I made dozens of origami boxes and hid treats in them. He learned to tear those apart very quickly (he almost RUNS to get the box when I put it in, lol) but he still has not progressed to chewing on his other toys. In fact he seems a bit scared of the new toys I have bought him. I would do the pine cone idea, but I'm worried that the pine cones from my yard may be covered in pesticides or infested with worms...

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-29-2010, 07:05 AM


 
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I don't know the logistics. I'll have to think about it. However, the first thought that comes to my mind is now making something similar to the paper origami boxes that he already loves but out of a very thin wood, cardboard, or other material that is a bit harder than paper? Perhaps start with three sides of this stiffer material and one side still paper. I have no idea how you would do it. I guess I would go first with tagboard as opposed to paper, then cardboard, then foam (if you can find a safe one) then thin wood?

I'm glad you posted again because I never started Daisy on anything and now her beak seems a bit long to me. She is playing a little bit with a few toys now, though.

Does anyone know how much chewing of wood and hard stuffs wild greys naturally do?

What is Baby's favorite treat, and does he recognize it if he sees it from afar? I noticed that the bird store offers a foraging toy that has a plastic top and bottom and then you put treats the bird wants in the middle and line around the outside with small wooden dowels. The bird has to chew through the dowels to get to the treat, unless it can extract the treats another way, which a grey probably could also learn to do.


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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-08-2010, 12:18 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the tips. I will see what I can do about boxes made of harder stuff the next time I am home (I'm a college student). I will also look about for foraging toys. He recognizes and loves grapes and tomatoes.

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