10 May 2023

Why Getting A Bird Could Be Good For Your Health

Discover the mental and physical health benefits of owning pet birds. Reduce stress, increase physical activity, and find companionship with the right bird. Learn about bird types for beginners and essential care tips for a healthy and happy bird.

Why Getting A Bird Could Be Good For Your Health

Few know, but owning a bird can provide numerous physical and mental health benefits. From reducing stress and anxiety to increasing physical activity and social interaction, pet birds can be a great addition to your life. And fortunately, most companion birds have a long lifespan, unlike a large dog or a guinea pig.

So, in this article, we’ll explore the various ways owning a bird can improve your health and how to choose the right bird for you.

Mental Health Benefits Of Bird Ownership

Besides other pets like dogs and cats, owning birds can positively affect mental health. They can help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, provide companionship and offer a sense of purpose to their owners. A study found that owning a pet bird led to lower levels of depression and increased social support among older adults.

Additionally, interacting with these beautiful creatures with inquisitive natures has been shown to have a calming effect on individuals. People who witness more bird species around their homes and towns tend to feel happier. Not to forget the warm feeling of hearing your pets greet you after a long day at work!

Excercising Parrot

Birds can also bring routine into their owners’ lives, particularly benefiting those struggling with mental health issues. Taking care of a bird can provide a daily routine and a sense of purpose, which can help combat feelings of loneliness and isolation.

But, when choosing a bird as an emotional support animal, it is essential to consider factors such as the bird’s temperament, size, and level of care required. Some birds, such as parakeets and cockatiels, are known for their friendliness and can make excellent companions. Others, like larger parrots, may require more specialised care and attention.

Moreover, we recommend consulting a veterinarian to determine whether a companion bird suits you. They will also be able to guide you on properly caring for it.

Alternatively, you can connect with other pet owners at your local pigeon club or on online bird forums to better prepare yourself for the responsibility of owning a pet.

Physical Health Benefits Of Bird Ownership

Besides helping you emotionally and mentally, birds can reciprocate your love and care in so many wonderful ways, as discussed below:

1. Encouraging Physical Activity

Pet bird owners tend to indulge in more physical activity, as they regularly feed and clean their feathered friend.

Bird Being Checked At Vet

2. Improving Cardiovascular Health

Watching birds can calm you down and improve your cardiovascular health. According to a study, pet ownership led to lower blood pressure.

Owning a dog or a cat requires way too much effort. That’s when you can consider owning pet birds instead. Less effort for the same positive effects!

3. Boosting Immune System

Since you’ll be moving around to look after your beautiful companion birds or walking long distances for bird watching, your body will be better equipped to fight diseases and infections. So, exposure to birds may improve your immune system.

To incorporate birds into a healthy lifestyle, you can try birdwatching, install a bird feeder or birdhouse in your backyard, or consider owning a pet bird. However, it is essential to be prepared for the responsibilities of bird ownership and ensure the bird is properly cared for.

Types Of Birds For Beginners

1. Parakeets

Parakeets or budgerigars are a popular choice for beginners. They are small, social birds with colourful feathers and easy-going personalities.

2. Cockatiels

A popular parrot species, cockatiels are friendly and affectionate birds. They are intelligent, easy to train and enjoy interacting with their owners.

3. Canaries

Canaries are small, low-maintenance, and relatively quiet, making them a good choice for those who live in apartments or shared living spaces.

4. Lovebirds

Lovebirds are small, colourful, chatty and playful birds. They require training and attention to prevent territorial and aggressive behaviour but can bond with their owner and become cuddly if handled with care.

5. Parrotlets

Parrotlets are a popular parrot species that are small yet sassy, so prepare yourself for their attitude if you choose them as your companions! They require effort to bond with their owners. As such, hand-feeding, teaching tricks, and playing with toys can help strengthen the bond.

When choosing a bird, consider your lifestyle, living situation, and the bird’s personality, diet, and care requirements. You must also choose a reputable breeder or rescue organisation to ensure a healthy, well-socialised bird. Finally, spend some time with the bird before adopting it to ensure it’s a good match.

Parrot In Backyard Excercising

Caring For A Pet Bird

1. Feeding

Your bird’s meal should contain high-quality seeds, pellets, fresh fruits, and vegetables. Their water should be changed daily, and food dishes should be cleaned regularly.

2. Grooming

Grooming includes regular wing and nail trimming, as well as bathing. Birds should be provided with a shallow dish of water to bathe in. Or you could mist them regularly.

3. Cleaning The Bird’s Living Area

This involves regular cleaning of the bird cage, changing the bedding and washing toys and dishes. Doing so will help prevent the build-up of harmful bacteria and parasites.

That said, health problems among birds include nutritional deficiencies, respiratory infections, and feather plucking. So, regular veterinary check-ups are essential for the early detection and prevention of health issues. Owners must also provide their pets with a nutritious diet, a clean environment, and adequate exercise.

It is important to note that birds are sensitive to environmental toxins such as cigarette smoke and household cleaners, so avoid exposing them to these hazards. Additionally, birds can be susceptible to stress and should be provided with social interaction and mental stimulation to help prevent behavioural issues.

Bird Resting On Mans Arm

Creating A Healthy And Happy Environment For Your Bird

Here are some tips pet owners can consider for creating a healthy and happy environment for their feathered pets:

  • Provide a spacious cage that allows the bird to move around and stretch its wings.
  • Place the cage in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and household hazards.
  • Offer a variety of perches of different sizes and textures to promote foot health and prevent boredom.
  • Give them plenty of toys and accessories for entertainment and mental stimulation.
  • Offer a healthy and balanced diet that includes fresh fruits, vegetables, and grains.
  • Encourage exercise by providing opportunities for the bird to fly and play outside the cage in a safe and supervised area.

Overall, socialisation and mental stimulation are crucial for the well-being of pet birds. So, give them regular personal attention and expose them to new experiences to prevent boredom and stress-related behaviours.

Moreover, toys, perches, and other accessories can mentally and physically stimulate birds. Perches of different sizes and textures can also help prevent foot problems entertaining the bird. Other accessories include swings, ladders, and bird baths.

Finally, it is essential to choose accessories that are safe, non-toxic, and appropriate for the bird’s size and species.

Health Benefits of Having a Bird

So, as you can see, owning pet birds has many benefits to one’s physical and mental health. Birds provide life-long companionship, help reduce stress, and can even lower blood pressure. Caring for a bird can promote a healthier lifestyle by encouraging exercise and healthy eating habits.

By choosing the right bird and creating a healthy and happy environment, bird ownership can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience. And to help you with that, we at Pet Planet offer various food options and snacks, cages, feeders, toys, and other products for your little friends. Or, you can check our blogs for more information on pets and their proper care.

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