Successfully Potty Training Your Pet Bird: Tips & Tricks

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You want your bird to be potty trained? Well, actually, you will be the one who gets trained to watch for signals that your bird needs to go. You must wait for your bird to be at least four months old before you can really begin training. Their digestive systems need to mature before you can expect them to hold their droppings. Before you begin training, you must spend a few days determining how many minutes pass between “episodes”.

Watch the bird in its cage, and while it is out playing. You will notice that the bird will squat and sometimes raise its wings and back up a bit before going. These are your cues. When the bird starts to “go”, tell it “GO POTTY”, or whatever phrase you choose to use. Especially watch first thing in the morning, as most birds “hold it” all night, and let go with a huge one when first awakened or let out of their cages. Use the magic word whenever you see the bird defecate.

After about a week of associating the word and the action, begin requiring the bird to “go” before you pick it up. Use the “word”, and wait till it goes, then pick it up and praise it profusely. Watch the clock, and when it gets close to the time for the next “episode”, put it where you want it to go, and use the magic word. Whenever the bird does as it is told, praise it to the skies! If an “accident” occurs, tell the bird “NO!”, and put it in the cage until time to “go” again, then only allow it to come to you when it goes on command.

In this method, you are actually the one who learns to time the bird’s bowels, and the bird only cooperates because it needs to anyway. Some birds will learn to let you know they need to go by fidgeting, or actually leaning toward the “potty place”, but for the most part, you do the work. If you are lucky, the bird will learn to use the “potty phrase” at the right time, and will tell you when it needs to go!

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