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Thread: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

  1. #1
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Exclamation Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    I have had my hands absolutely full for the last five days!

    I posted about the skewing of pellets out of the cage, however, it has taken a turn for the worse and there is so much naughty behavior I don't know where to start first, do we have a budgie therapist in the house?

    I laugh cuz' if I don't, I'll cry. For the last five days, Ruthie has been skewing the pellets out of the food dish nonstop. It's like that movie Field of Dreams, "If you build it they will come." Only with Ruthie, it's "If you fill the dish up, she will empty it." The moment it's filled, she is digging to China in that dish like no tomorrow. As a result, the other budgies don't get to eat and she will chase them away just to be able to dig the pellets out. So we tried putting dishes in the bottom for the other budgies but Ruthie chased them away from that too. I let them all out and put them on the table with newspaper and put the dishes out and she emptied them there too and chased them away from the dishes. Then I felt so bad the others were not getting to eat that I decided I'd take them out two at a time for feeding and make sure Ruthie stayed in the cage. Well CharlieBoy got a royal chewing out from Sampson because he was mad he wasn't out first to eat and he refused to eat because he thought he was gonna "get it" from Sampson. And when he did go for the food dish it was to try to empty it. Then BabySamuel was moving things around and got too zealous with pushing the food dish that it went right over the edge and onto the floor and there went all the pellets. You should've seen the look on his face. He was embarrassed and upset. We calmly picked up the pellets because they fell in a pile and vacuumed again. Then I let Rebby out to eat. She refused to eat and only wanted to be talked to and kissed and cuddled. Rebby also took a turn at tossing the food dish on the floor and that landed her right back in the cage with the others.

    So I have budgies that are not eating and seem to have a real fascination with turning over their food dish. They are being so naughty I don't know what to do with them. If they were starving, they'd be eating but obviously they are having fun being naughty - very, very, very NAUGHTY MESSY BAD BEHAVED BUDGIES.

    BirdMommy has had ENOUGH!

    Someone help stop this madness? Ideas on this anyone? After five days of this, I don't know what to do... :surrender

  2. #2
    Always Awing Tailfeather featherjinxer's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    mmmm make them eat their broccoli then sit in a chair for 30 min?

    I seriously have no more ideas without seeing it...

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    *Poetry Comes From The Soul* Maturing... Budgieobsession's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Could you buy those dispensers? Or maybe seperate Ruthie from the others?
    Female Grey/Pied
    ~*~Visit my Budgie Website, although I do not have my babies anymore~*~

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    Banned Tailfeather Squawk and Howl's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    oh my, what a naughty budgie! i will offer some suggestions...


    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    For the last five days, Ruthie has been skewing the pellets out of the food dish nonstop....The moment it's filled, she is digging to China in that dish like no tomorrow. As a result, the other budgies don't get to eat and she will chase them away just to be able to dig the pellets out.
    so she thinks a bowl of small items to toss is a fun toy- give her a toy like this- larger beads that she cannot swallow in a cup to toss about. crafts stores have tons of cheap plastioc beads you can use. this may distract her. bury some treat in it, too, to encourage her...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    I decided I'd take them out two at a time for feeding and make sure Ruthie stayed in the cage. Well CharlieBoy got a royal chewing out from Sampson because he was mad he wasn't out first to eat and he refused to eat because he thought he was gonna "get it" from Sampson.
    this is the right track. i would say, remove rebby when you feed them- allow your other budgies to eat, then put her back in. she'll chuck much less and the birds won't starve.

    another suggestion: place the food in a wide shallow tupperware lid on the bottom of the cage for the first two hours. half of the fun (i'm speculating) is the plummeting food. if there is less of an impact, it may discourage her.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    Then I let Rebby out to eat. She refused to eat and only wanted to be talked to and kissed and cuddled. Rebby also took a turn at tossing the food dish on the floor and that landed her right back in the cage with the others.
    don't feed rebby when she's out, i guess, or hold the dish that she must eat from, so she can't chuck it...

    my budgies had a glorious time for a bout a week taking the entire dish off the cage bars! they managed to remove the dishes (hooked onto the cage bars, full of expensive harrison's pellets, ) and i would find them on the floor, empty! pellets under the grate.

    so i used binder clips to make the dishes stay put- i clip the metal prongs after i install them into the cage, so they act as an obstacle to getting it off- they are wider than the cage bar spacing. ha!

  5. #5
    Spank me...I iz naughty!! Tailfeather Sir Peter of Canada's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    How frustrating this must be...just when you think you have them trained to act like well behaved young adults...bam...they decide to go back to being birds again...my sympathies to you

  6. #6
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Yes, I think a "budgie time out" would be a grand idea, however, I don't think anyone has every successfully come up with how to have one that doesn't make the owner of the budgie feel totally bad for putting them in time out. We already know the budgies own us, we don't own the budgies. Mine have prooved that in full scale this last week.

    Let's see, about dispensers - I've used the dispensers and they don't get enough food out of those and tend to go on a hunger strike every time they appear in the cage so I quit using them. I own six of them though, hubby tells me what a waste of money.

    Hmm...for Ruthie a dish with large beads might be a good idea. I wouldn't have thought of that. I just couldn't believe that at only ten weeks she could be so hormonal. Never seen a baby budgie act like this before. It was Rebby before her doing this who is 8 months old. Rebby quit and it would appear that she is encouraged to start again by her baby sister's antics. I think I may try the bead thing, have to go and look around and see what I can find today. I'll continue leaving Ruthie in the cage when I take the budgies out to eat and will continue removing Rebby as well. Rebby is such a little stinker for attention that I can have my daughter take her in the other room and play with her while the other four boys are eating outside the cage.

    About the wide shallow tupperware lid - I've been doing that. They like to turn it over in the bottom of the cage or push it off of anything it is sitting up high on from a distance it would appear lately. I have food dishes that snap onto the side of the cage and those are the ones that Ruthie is perching on and skewing pellets out of. And yes, she has had aLOT of fun trying to figure out how to remove them from the side of the cage. {sigh} Y'know, the more I type this out the funnier this is getting to me. They are so naughty and mischievious and yet this behavior makes me want to shower them with kisses.

    The medal binder clips is a good idea too. I am going to venture out to the store today and "see what I can see" while I'm out there. They are such little stinkers, like a preschool that is just out of control and the adult on duty is sitting in the middle of the floor with a white flag of surrender. Almost like "something is in the air" with them because they are never naughty all together. Usually it is only one or two of them.

    My daughter thinks we should do this - take them all in the shower. She said they are always so cute and fluffy and quiet afterward that it may calm them down for a bit. I told her seven budgies in a shower is aLOT to handle and the idea is downright laughable. At the same time it would make for some great pictures if they'd go for it. Usually we only take one at a time in.

    I'm thinking that the beads in the cup is a great idea and I'm going to see what our local craft stores have in the area of beads. Could you post a picture of the size or kind of bead you've used? I worry about their chewing and what is good for them to have and what isn't good for them to have. Ruthie has a brand new razor sharp baby beak and that little girl can just shred anything. We swear she could shred an aluminum can if she wanted to.

    Right now they are very loud and upset because they cannot come out of the cage. BUT they most certainly are not coming out of the cage today until I can figure out how to contain their messes. We have "free range budgies." They are spoiled and spend all their time out of the cage except when we are not home. So in a way they are in "time out" and having to eat broccoli like FeatherJinxer says. The cage is "their restriction" or "being grounded."

  7. #7
    Pardon My Pearls Please Tailfeather Oh Mowsie's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Hi Rhema. Those "Pony Beads" are just about the right size. They're hard plastic and come in a multitude of colors. If you have a Michael's craft store.. ask a clerk to show you pony beads if you aren't sure what they are. They're in just about every beading kit you can think of and hard enough that a budgie or cockatiel's beak can't break them. Choose hard plastic "acryllic" type beads and stay away from anything painted and you'll be fine! Good luck!
    Visit Apache, Neo, Silver, Taxi, Tieka, Trinny, Buzz, Tiggy, Paris, Persephone & Hektor at Nikkie's Cockatiels More of what the flock is up too at their blog. Tiel Tales
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Quote Originally Posted by featherjinxer
    mmmm make them eat their broccoli then sit in a chair for 30 min?

    I seriously have no more ideas without seeing it...
    ROFLOL!!!

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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Quote Originally Posted by Hehot
    bam...they decide to go back to being birds again...my sympathies to you
    Bwahahaha!

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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Baby Bird went through a phase for several months where she figured out how to unhook all the food dishes from the cages. It was too funny! Each time I would McGyver a new locking mechanism for the foodbowls, she would set out to work on picking the new locks! We had an ongoing game of who could out-wit who for quite a while! I eventually won with some pieces of wood on the outside of the cage with two holes in each that I would set the pins of the food dishes down into. Occasionally, she would manage to remove a block of wood by jumping up and down on it until it fell off, lol, but most of the time it worked. Eventually the phase passed and I was able to remove them.

    She only did it once or twice with a full water dish...LOL...now THAT was funny! I think she found it harder to get out of the way of that without getting hit with the contents of the water dishes and opted for the foodbowls! We've had one other bird rock the foodbowls once, but never like Baby.

    I miss those days...

    A sense of humour is a real asset in birdkeeping as in life.

  11. #11
    Banned Tailfeather Squawk and Howl's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    Yes, I think a "budgie time out" would be a grand idea, however, I don't think anyone has every successfully come up with how to have one that doesn't make the owner of the budgie feel totally bad for putting them in time out.
    i too give time outs, and at first, i did feel guilty. i started talking to the bird a lot more when i was putting them in the time out, mainly for my benefit. it puts me in the right frame of mind, and i believe the birds pick up on my emotions.

    rather than being angry, i am more calm & concerned. i say things like, "OK- time out. you are not being a good bird. you are too overstimulated to be good right now. go calm down. time out." along with the reason why they are going into a time out: "no biting", "no mess", "stay". so that they know why it's happening (along with catching them IN THE ACT of being bad).

    it really worked for me- it's not a way to put the bird away so the bird is not in our way- it's a short time period tool to get the bird to understand. the time out for a bird is 5 minutes, tops. so it ends up being MORE work in the short term for the people involved. it's not like locking away the bird so theys top bothering you. it's more like teaching the bird the consequences for their actions. thsi new frame of mind has helped with actually teaching the bird, rather than punishing it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    My daughter thinks we should do this - take them all in the shower. She said they are always so cute and fluffy and quiet afterward that it may calm them down for a bit. I told her seven budgies in a shower is aLOT to handle and the idea is downright laughable. At the same time it would make for some great pictures if they'd go for it. Usually we only take one at a time in.
    that's funny! i imagine a popcorn popper ricochet of budgies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhema
    Could you post a picture of the size or kind of bead you've used? I worry about their chewing and what is good for them to have and what isn't good for them to have. Ruthie has a brand new razor sharp baby beak and that little girl can just shred anything. We swear she could shred an aluminum can if she wanted to.
    with budgies, i'd use plastic "pony beads" here's a link of two diff sizes (the first two beads) http://www.chopperstoys.com/CatalogPartsPlastics.html

  12. #12
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    That is funny about BabyBird and the dish dropping. I love the term "McGuyver" because that is just so appropriate. Trying to keep up with these budgies sometimes is hard work and very funny at the same time. I have to say for all the mischief they've given, I sure love them and it'd be a sad day to come if they weren't mischievious. And yes, Pete is right - they did go back to being regular ol' lil' budgies for the moment. Y'know, just talking about this here in this forum has helped me so much because I really just *did not know what to do.* :ihavenocl

    I came home after going out this afternoon and found...YEP! You guessed it...more pellets on the floor. They were so happy to see me though that I couldn't scold them. So I just got out the vacuum and told them that it looked like they had a great time while I was gone self-entertaining themselves. It would do me no good to tell them how much their precious little pellets cost and how much money has been on the floor in the last five days. They don't care though, they are too busy waiting for me to bring on the carrots.

    I must've been in sync with you here in the forums because I went to Walmart and bought pony beads. Our 'Michaels Arts & Crafts' store here is in transition, they are moving from one location to another. Interestingly enough, they are moving next to Petco. So from Walmart the pony beads we purchased are 9x6 mm and there are 325 of them supposedly in this bag. They cost $1.38 for the bag. Big enough for her not to swallow and almost as big as her little head. The kind we purchased is in the picture below. Ashlyn couldn't make up her mind what color to get Ruthie and Rebby so she settled on these because she thought they might catch their attention more in the light.



    So it looks like I was on the same page as everyone here without reading all the posts while I was away. And then of course I couldn't just stop at beads. We bought them a pretty new swing with a big fat shiny purple bell on it. I know there is going to be fights probably over this swing but Ash found it and she was begging me to buy this swing. Then we bought new perches and well...the list goes on. I walked out with an entire bag full of goodies for our budgie babies. Gee, you wouldn't know they were in "bad behavior modification" mode would you?

    And Dani...it is so hard to put them in time out. It kills me to do it because I always want to cry and tear up. I can't stand it. When Rachel was with us and so naughty like this I could only keep her apart for about one hour, I was just tortured by her sad little gaze. And she was naughty like this but not near as much of a handful as Ruthie and Rebby together. I have a regular "Thelma & Louise" situation here. I had to laugh about the part of catching them in the act. I have done that so many times and they always scurry and run away with the, "Who me? I didn't do anything, surely you ARE mistaken my lady..."

    Now what treat would you recommend we put in the dish for "Thelma and Louise" to find? And how big of a dish would you recommend? And since there are two girls should we have two dishes or just one? Probably two so they don't squabble? And I suppose to keep the others from wanting to cache in on their fun, this should be a special activity for just the girls when they are out alone? Or should everyone get to have a crack at it?

  13. #13
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    So far all the new "furniture" I put in the cage has all the budgies happily singing away and playing with their new toys. They came out for feeding time so I didn't have to do the bead thing yet. I'm going to work in the next few minutes. When I return this evening around the 7pm hour, we will see how it goes.

  14. #14
    what are commas? Teenager carriesb's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Can you seperate the girls in a different cage for a little while? But as far as the food dispenser there's one called Birdzerk and it's really cool here's the site http://www.bird-zerk.com/
    I think that may be an option even though they can throw the food down it doesn't go on the floor you just open the bottom and pour it right back to the top. One other thing I was wondering I know from other posts you give them plenty of toys but do you rotate them and move things around a bit. I have to redecorate Neo's cage about once a week because he starts getting wild.
    Mommy To Budgies Neo and Sky Tiels Dandy and Crackers

  15. #15
    Rhema Fledgeling Rhema's Avatar
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    Re: Needing Some SERIOUS Help Here

    Yes, we are always "redecorating" the cage. In fact, I just had this discussion with my sister this morning on the telephone, long distance as she lives in another state. Anyway, my sister called me this morning when I was cleaning the cage (paper gets changed daily under the false bottom and it gets cleaned weekly with "the works") and she was asking me what I was doing to it. I told her what I was doing with regard to putting in new wood perches and removing old perches and putting in some new ropes to shred, etc. She asked me how often I changed their cage around and I told her constantly because with a group of seven precious little budgie babies the playpen gets boring very quickly to them.

    My sister then proceeded to tell me that the didn't need their cages changed around and they were probably mad at me for that and that they are creatures of habit. I informed her that birds do need their cages redecorated routinely because they live their life span in that cage and how boring for them. We like to change our furniture, paint our walls, change the wallpaper or go without and do all kinds of funky things to our homes or we get bored. I told her the last thing I would ever do is sentence a bird to a cage with the same stuff in it week after week, month after month until year became year after year... What a boring existence. She said she never thought of it that way. Ashlyn was chattering away in the back and she said something to me about their eggs and I told her that I would be downstairs to check the eggs in a minute and to cool them so the budgies didn't burn their little tongues. And then my sister said in a shocked tone, "You give them eggs, too?" I told her they not only get eggs, they get all sorts of other things they like too with carrots and dark romaine lettuce topping the list of budgie favorites.

    So all of that I posted because you asked me about changing their toys and furniture. Yes, we change it about every six weeks. The hubby is always asking me why am I spending so much money on them all the time and I told them because they get bored and I like to accessorize as a woman. That he should be glad it's not as expensive as a pair of new shoes or purse every week. That's my justification for it.

    I like that feeder in that link above. Do you think in any way that the budgies could climb into it and toss the food on the floor? If they can, then it's not worth getting at this point because we are still working toward the bead experiment.

    Right now I have BabySamuel and CharlieBoy with me in the office and they are eating away from the others. Judging from the way they are "chowing" on that food they are starving from the girls throwing the food on the floor. I do believe that I may keep the girls separate from the boys since they keep throwing the food on the floor and bullying the others from eating it. I am just glad to see my BabySamuel eating. He is so light I can barely feel him on my finger and that makes me concerned. He looks fine but y'know...a mama always worries when her babies are not eating. They are eating tonight and I am so thankful that I am jumping for joy!


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