Just as furniture is important to your home, perches are important to your pet Parrots living quarters because these promote health.
In its natural habitat, a parrot sits on branches and twigs all day. In order to simulate its natural environment and make it feel at home in its cage or aviary, it is important for you to install several perches inside your birds cage. As mentioned, perches promote health because they exercise the birds feet and improve their strength and dexterity. Conversely, getting improperly sized perches can cause foot abnormalities and lead to medical conditions like arthritis and atrophy among birds.
There are things you need to consider when you buy or make your own perch for your parrots cage. The first is size. In order to be effective in promoting foot health for your pet, the size of the perch must be appropriate to the size of the bird. When your parrot perches on your finger, for instance, you would be able to tell, more or less, if your bird needs a perch similar to the size of your finger or something a lot bigger.
To promote health and exercise, install various perches for your bird and situate them all around its cage to allow it to hop from one perch to another. The use of a perch also helps a parrot maintain the health of its nails and toes. Make sure you get a bigger perch to place on the top part of your birds cage for roosting.
Another important quality of a good perch is that it should be made of natural wood. One of the best materials to use for your parrots perch is Manzanita wood that simulates the birds natural perches in the wild. Citrus wood is also great because it is softer than Manzanita and gives the parrot a chance to exercise its beak by chewing on the perch.
Since wood is soft and is eventually destroyed by the bird, then it must be replaced from time to time. It is important that you thoroughly wash your perch with soap and hot water prior to installing it on your pet parrots cage. This is necessary to wash off any toxic materials like pesticides. To get rid of insects that may be lurking within the wood, the perch can also be placed in the oven at the lowest setting for half an hour.
Although easier to clean, plastic perches are not recommended as these may be too smooth and slippery for the bird. Some toyshops sell cement perches that are good for keeping the parrots nails rounded. Situating these cement perches near food or water insures your parrot will use them. Since most parrots use their perches to wipe their beaks, then you will need to clean these perches even more often than the others that were not placed near the birds food.
Some toyshops sell sandpaper perches. These are not recommended! The abrasive surface of the perch will cause sores at the bottom of your pets feet.
The commonly found and widely used Dowell perch is inexpensive and easy to clean but is not recommended unless in combination with perches of other type of material because its uniform shape does not exercise the birds feet and may even cause medical problems for the bird in the long run.
Be creative when you install the perches in your pet parrots cage. Use varied shapes and sizes and situate them all around the cage to make the birds feel like they are hopping from tree to tree. Choose each perch carefully, keeping in mind your birds size and behavior. Bear in mind also that, ultimately, your birds health and happiness will be greatly improved by these perches assuring you of years of joyful times with your pet.