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Christmas Bird Safety Tips
11 years ago
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Holiday Dangers to Parrots and Pet Birds
Christmas is a season of joy and cheer, but the festivities can turn tragic for bird owners that don't make provisions for their pet's safety.

To help make sure that your pet has a merry holiday this year, follow the easy safety tips outlined below as you plan your Christmas celebration. Making sure that your pet stays safe doesn't take a lot of effort, but can go a long way in preventing tragedy during the Christmas season.

  • Keep an eye on ornaments. Birds are naturally attracted to things that glitter, shine, sparkle, and blink -- so it's no wonder that many Christmas decorations draw their attention. Make sure you keep your bird away from any lights or decorations, and above all, the Christmas tree. A solid bite to a wire or light bulb can pose a risk of burns, electrocution, or both, and fragile glass ornaments along with their sharp wire hangers can cause cuts, scratches, and puncture wounds. Keeping your bird away from these items greatly reduces his risk of injury during the holidays.

  • Beware of ribbons, bows, and gift wrap. Many holiday gift wrapping materials are brightly colored and shiny, which, like the ornaments, makes them a beacon for curious beaks. At first, many owners might think that it's okay to let their birds play with and shred these papers and bows, but the inks used to print them could potentially be toxic to your bird. Additionally, some ribbons and bows have the ability to get caught around your bird's neck, legs, or toes. This can cause serious injury or even death, so it's imperative that your pet be kept away from all the pretty presents.

  • Don't Share the Holiday Feast. While many times sharing "people" food with birds is actually encouraged, many holiday dishes include sugar, spices, and seasonings that can potentially be toxic to birds. To make sure that your bird doesn't ingest something hazardous, prepare a seperate meal for your bird or opt for a high quality commercial diet.

  • Keep tabs on the Christmas "Spirits" If you or your guests plan to indulge in any alcoholic beverages, make sure that your bird does not have access to them. Alcohol can be deadly to birds, and curious parrots have been known to sneak a drink out of unattended glasses. Keep your pet safe by confining him to an area away from the festivities.

  • Pay attention to stress levels. Birds can get stressed pretty easily, and the holidays can make it worse by exposing them to sights, sounds, and people that they are not accustomed to. Consider leaving your bird caged in a quiet, comfortable, and secure area of your home until the party winds down. This will help make sure that your celebration does not cause undue stress or discomfort for your feathered friend.

    While these tips will go a long way in keeping your bird safe throughout the holidays, no amount of prevention is a substitute for good old fashioned supervision. When your bird is out of his cage, always make sure to keep a close eye on what he is getting into. Always paying attention to your bird's whereabouts and actions is the best way to keep your bird safe not only during the holidays, but throughout the year -- and for the many years that you and your pet will spend together. Stay safe, and Happy Holidays!

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