|If I have any beliefs about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have known will go to heaven, and very, very few persons. - James Thurber|
Hints on Keeping the Bird Noise Down
Noisy birds and overly sensitive neighbors are the the biggest concern when living with a pet bird. Here are some hints that can help you keep your bird.
Keep regular hours with curtains
Waking up and putting your bird to bed at regular hours not only communicates to the bird when it is time to sleep, even the neighbors will know that they don't need to bother you about your noisy bird if it is almost bedtime and you'll be putting them to bed shortly. Curtains can serve one other purpose as well - muffling the sound of your bird. You may even consider making highly insulated curtains if it is appropriate for your situation.
Special note about curtains: Try not to use them every time the bird squawks but only as a last resort. If you make it a habit to use them whenever the bird is too noisy, it will eventually learn to keep squawking even with the curtains on.
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Introduce your bird to your neighbors
This won't always work, but if you have an especially noisy bird, you may try to introduce yourself and your bird to your neighbors. Knowing and having met your loved pet bird, and perhaps knowing what's going on, may add to the patience of your neighbors. It's easier for them to complain about a noisy neighbor when they don't know that it's Lucy, your pet bird that's sad because she just lost her mate.
Leave the radio on
Leaving a radio on will help keep your bird company and can help mask some of the softer noises.
Just like people, birds will tend to be far more quiet if you first give them some exercise and a time to be noisy. Try dancing and singing with your bird in the late afternoon or before everyone is quieting down for the evening. If a particular neighbor is bothered, try to find a time to do this when they will not be home. Later your bird will naturally be more quiet as they've already had their exercise for the day.
Figure out why they're being noisy
Try to figure out why they're being noisy. Are they simply needing some attention? We can give you a hundred hints for keeping your bird quiet, but if there is something in the room that's bothering them, nothing will really work. So when your bird is unusually noisy, take a look around and see if you can find any reason. Is there still plenty of food and water? Did their favorite toy fall out of the cage? Take a minute and look around.
A new bird toy can occupy a bird for hours. Parrots seem to equate the value of a new toy with their ability to destroy it. In fact, shredding shredded paper seems to be a favorite of many parrots as long as it's not given to them so often that they get bored.
Keep some wild bird feeders
Almost no one will complain about the noise wild birds make at a bird feeder by your apartment, if they are allowed at your complex. What is especially interesting is that any sounds your bird makes can easily be confused with the sounds of the wild birds since most people will not distinguish between the sounds different birds make. One important point however, this will probably not work if your apartment is above tree top level. Wild birds rarely fly higher than tree top level and, therefore, rarely ever find feeders higher than that.
Where to put your bird
It is often best to keep your bird in a corner or end room that doesn't share a common wall with neighbors. In addition, sounds travel upwards much more than down, so high apartments are strongly advised. The fact that sound travels up more than down is easily affirmed if you've ever lazily ballooned over a field of people and heard their voices as you floated quietly by. For this reason, if you have or are thinking about getting a pet bird, try to get a corner apartment or an apartment on one of the upper floors if possible. That way the noise from the bird won't bother your neighbors as much.
Sometimes it may be worth hanging carpets loosely on some of your walls to help muffle sound. In fact, if necessary, you can even find professional sound muffling tiles to keep in the room with your bird. Another possibility that's much easier for many people includes keeping lots of plants in the house. This actually helps out in a another way, it helps keep the humidity up at a fairly high level which is good for most birds.
Hopefully you will find some ideas here that you can use to help make living with your pet bird in an apartment an enjoyable experience for you and your neighbors.
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Read more information on pet bird care.
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