Adopting a Parrot: 7 Things You Must Know Before You Adopt


Having a pet is like having a kid. You need to take care of them all the time, but it’s also rewarding. You’ll have a constant companion and will also make a lot of fond memories.

This is not just limited to cats, dogs, and other furry animals. You can have feathered friends too, and parrots are a wild choice!

A lot of people adopt parrots as they’re intelligent and can talk. But that definitely comes with repercussions if you don’t do the proper research beforehand.

Are you thinking of adopting a parrot? Then you must know seven things to prepare well for a feathered friend in your house!

Adopt from a Parrot Rescue Organization

If you want to adopt a parrot, you should adopt them from a parrot rescue organization. They have plenty of parrots who lost their homes or were rescued from bad situations and are now ready to find a friendly home.

Before adopting from such organizations, do some research so that you can get the parrot species that you’re looking for.

A suggestion: If you’re a beginner, adopt small parrots like parakeets, lovebirds, and parrotlets. But if you already have parrots in your house, you can adopt larger ones like macaws and cockatoos.

They Have a Complex Diet

Parrots have a complex diet with a widely varied palate. You can’t satisfy a parrot with just some grains and water. Feed them nuts, fruits, vegetables, and seeds along with grains and rice. You can even give them superworms as a rich source of protein in their diet.

Whatever you give them, make sure you prepare it fresh every day, and make sure to vary the items so that they don’t lose their appetite. If you can, boil their vegetables, mix them with some rice, seeds, and worms, and then alternate it with a fruit-and-nut bowl for their next meal.

They Need Special Care

Parrots aren’t easy to maintain. Giving them food and water at regular intervals won’t be enough. You need to get them a spacious cage with various arrangements so they can move freely. Also, have a few spots in your house to give them some flying range.

If you want your parrot to feel at home, you should understand where it came from. Try to mimic some of the environment in its cage so that it can stay lively and don’t create unwanted situations for you.

And if it has had a history of some traumatic experience, you need to handle it with love.

You also need to give them something like ‘manicure sessions’ where you’ll clip their nails regularly. Make sure to get vet appointments for regular checkups, and ensure that the vet clinic is well ventilated so that your parrot doesn’t contract any illness.

They Are Highly Intelligent Birds

Parrots are highly intelligent birds and quick learners. Some of their species are also emotionally intelligent. You can even compare their intelligence to a young child!

For these reasons, you need to give them a lot of attention. They need constant socialization. Be prepared to spend at least two hours daily if you want them to function well! Also, be very gentle with them as they’re prey in the wild, making them highly alert.

If they experience a lack of attention, they can behave aggressively, may pull out their feathers, or can cease eating altogether. So if you are often away from home, it’s best to have an independent pet.

They Are Wild and Messy!

Messy, messy, messy! Parrots can be very messy. You definitely need to clean their cage every day as they will leave their droppings everywhere besides their designated corner. They’ll also make a mess with their food and water. Cleaning them properly will save you from hassles later on.

They can even make a mess in their play area and other parts of your house. Also, make sure you don’t have candles in places where your parrot will fly. Parrot-proof your house as well to protect them from hazardous objects. It’s a lot like baby-proofing your house!

Parrots can be wild and very vocal. Besides making a mess, be prepared for a lot of noise! They are active and social birds, which means they’ll be chattering constantly, maybe even when you’re sleeping. Also, be careful, as they’ll even bite you if they get angry or aggressive!

There Are a Lot of Species!

Had it been any other animal or bird, you would find many similarities across their species. It’s easy to differentiate between cats and dogs and care for them accordingly. However, parrots have roughly 350 species, and their characteristics vary widely.

Before you adopt a parrot, choose which species you want to adopt. You need to study their behavior, food habits, lifestyle, natural habitat, etc.

Knowing thoroughly about the bird from a particular species will prepare you beforehand for taking care of them as your pet. You’ll then be able to cope with them easily, and they’ll bond with you better.

They Live a Long Life

Parrots generally love a long time, but it also depends on their size and species.

Small parrots like cockatiels and parrotlets may live anywhere from twenty to thirty years. Lovebirds, however, will only live long if they have a mate. Without one, they’ll perish from heartbreak. Large parrot species like macaws, cockatoos, or Amazons live anywhere from sixty to eighty years.

So if you’re adopting a parrot, be prepared for a lifelong commitment. And if you think they’ll outlive you, make arrangements for them for the time after you pass away.


Adopting a parrot is no joke. You’ll have to prepare yourself for a lot of things, and it’ll come with costs. But the overall experience is very adventurous. You’ll have company and will save a rescued parrot.

With that being said, we hope you’ll consider these seven things before adopting a parrot. Have a wonderful life with your new feathered friend!

Adam Thompson, DVM
Dr. Adam Thompson is a renowned veterinarian who has been a guiding light in pet care for over 15 years. He earned his DVM from Cornell University and has worked in various animal hospitals nationwide. He has rich experience working with both domestic and exotic animals. A passionate advocate for animal rights, he spends his free time volunteering at local animal shelters and enjoys hiking with his two rescue dogs. He is also an enthusiastic wildlife photographer, often capturing the beauty of nature and animals in his travels.

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