10 Reasons Not to Get a Parrot as a Pet

I love my parrot. He is a very sweet tempered, friendly parrot. I have had him for 13 years. My opinion on having a pet parrot has been shaped over the years. I went in to the decision pretty well informed about the responsibility involved. I had lived with a roommate who had several parrots. They are beautiful, intelligent pets. However, when I made the decision to get a parrot, I was a different person leading a different life. Single, no kids and living with one very tolerant roommate. Thirteen years later, I am very fortunate to have a very tolerant husband who never wanted a parrot. With this experience in mind I have put together the following: 10 Reasons Not to Get a Parrot as a Pet Reason #1 They live a really long time. People say that all the time, but hindsight is 20/20. Most pets die within a reasonable amount of time, pets that you get in college shouldn't be around 13 years later when you finally get married and have children. Reason #2 Cute friendly babies often grow up to be ornery adults. Just like this is true of people, it can be true of birds. My parrot as a young bird was much friendlier with other people and less territorial about people, children, and other pets spending time with me. I never had to worry about him biting until he became an adult bird. Reason #3 Parrots often bond to one person. It takes a lot of work to train a parrot to be comfortable around a lot of people. In my situation, I lived alone for many years, so training him to be comfortable being handled by lots of people wasn't an issue. Again, with a pet living so long, your life can change dramatically and your parrot might not be prepared for it. Reason #4 Most parrots aren't great around small children. This wasn't an issue when I got my parrot; there were no small children around EVER! Now there are two, and a dog. The parrot can't be out when the children are. The risk of my parrot biting is probably higher than my dog and there are fewer warning signs that he felt threatened. Reason #5 The mess. They are messy and there is nothing you can do about that. Mine lives in a glass enclosed cage, which contains the mess, but inside the cage is quite a mess. Reason #6 The noise. Parrots scream, mine likes to play "I can be louder than that" when the baby cries or the vacuum cleaner is running. There is nothing you need more than your pet screaming while your baby is. Noise can also be a factor if you live in an apartment. Every time I moved I was concerned I would be evicted due to the noise. Though in one apartment building, I found out that a neighbor had been talking to my parrot through the door. He had a social life when I wasn't home. Reason #7 It is selfish. In nature birds get to fly, climb, socialize, exercise and live in a very stimulating environment. It is hard to duplicate in a house. Most homes can fill some of these needs, but it is easy to see when you look at the size cages available, that most pet birds aren't getting the exercise they need. Reason #8 Vet bills. There are vet expenses with all pets, so this shouldn't come as a shock, but should be factored in to the decision to get any pet. Reason #9 The poop. They aren't easily potty trained. Enough said. Reason #10 The damage to stuff. Sometimes they just like to chew, and even with enough toys, when they are out of their cage they will chew, furniture, clothes, etc. Hopefully they don't destroy anything with significant value, they are not very discriminating.