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Thread: Moving with a geriatric keet

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    Brand New Egg Peachies Girl's Avatar
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    Moving with a geriatric keet

    Hi, long time no see!

    My flock and I have to move, and I am hoping to get some tips on how to move a geriatric keet with little stress. We lost his brother Levi a few months ago to old age, and Aqua has had his own ups and downs over the last year. I am afraid of stressing him out by him being in his travel box, and a new environment. I was thinking maybe having some playtime, then put him in his travel box, then let him settle in to the new place in his cage for a few days?

    I'm also thinking he should be last in the travel box, first out of the travel box and straight into his cage. He will have to be in his travel box for at least a half an hour. The cockatiels will be okay longer time in their box.

    Any other tips on how to get him moved and settled in without stressing him out? I would hate to have this move be the last straw that started his downward spiral...
    Proud owner of two tiels (Peachie and Spice) and two keets (Levi and Aqua)! :

  2. #2
    Tailfeather
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Hi, Annette! When you say "travel box", is it a cardboard box? I've seen some really nice small "travel cages". They are small, but the bird can see out, and there even is a little perch inside they can perch on. Will he have his own travel box or cage? Since he has special needs, I am thinking that would be the best approach. I would put him in one of those small travel cages, and of course cover the cage with a nice afghan or a piece of warm flannel. When you get him in the car, I would put him on the front seat of the car, and then uncover the front side so he can see what is happening. I think putting him in a box (I'm thinking cardboard), may just stress him out much more. I know how stressed out new birds are when I bring them home from the Pet Shop. Generally they put them in one of those little cardboard boxes, and they are scratching the bottom of the box, and trying desperately to get out on the trip home.

    You should be able to find a little travel cage at your local pet shop, or on line (Amazon has a good selection). I would say to just be sure the one you get is secured well, so he does not manage to get out of cage. Some are better secured than others.

    Once you get him to your home, I see no reason why he could not go into his cage that he lives in. Again, I would cover the cage 3 sides only for a day or so, until he is comfortable with his environment. I think having some one-on-one time with him the day you get him moved would be very helpful as well. And wherever he was located with the other flock (cage distance, etc), I would try to set it up as much like before as possible. He needs to realize he still has a comfort zone with all of his little buddies there with him. Good luck with your moving and do let us know how it goes.

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Ellen gave you great advice but some birds mine as an example panic in the travel cages and thrash around like crazy .... I actually went and purchased the cardboard pet carriers used for small animals such as rabbits and kittens they have plenty of room to move around inside and also because its dark they dont panic I put soft blankets in the bottom and they stay really calm and with yours being an older bird i would be worried he could get injured if he was to panic during the journey.

    Similar to what i have the other advantage is they do fold flat for storage.. http://www.petsathome.com/webapp/wcs...gfZhoC1WDw_wcB

    Everything else Ellen said I would do the same.
    Last edited by Charlie :); 02-14-2015 at 04:05 AM.
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Is the bird tame or not?
    This could make some difference on how i would handle the situation.

    In most cases I would advise a box. The dark should and does in most cases I have experienced will keep the bird quiet and safe.
    I do feel this is the best option and why most rescues do like wise.

    A special travel cage (Pet Carrier) will work for some more relaxed birds. And you just put a towel or cloth in there with an apple for food and moisture. No branches unless it is one on the floor and fixed down.

    I am not into cages as I have seen two birds go crazy in one of these and feel they were lucky to not get badly hurt. And there is always a chance that a bird could catch a wing in the bars. But if you do use a cage make sure the bars are very close and there are no perches up off the cage floor. If you have to brake hard the bird may get thrown off and start panic flight hurting itself.

    Now the other way I travel with some birds is to have them free in the car. (May not be legal) But I have yet to have a bird panic when they have been allowed to travel like this.
    Mad as it seems it has worked for me on any number of trips.
    The longest was with Angel (RIP) she traveled like this for a 4.5hr road trip and she was from an aviary and parent raised. And breeder did not sell with the others because she was such a panic arse.




    I started out with her in a travel box (my hospital box) and she was behaving reasonably well. When I stopped for fuel I let her out. Yes sure she did fly into the windscreen, but not very hard as she could not pick up enough speed. Then she went down the back and stayed there right up until I turned into my road. And like she could feel my vibes that I was home she came up to the dash for the last few hundred yards.
    R.I.P my little ones.

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    I don't think I've ever seen the cardboard pet carriers here, other than the little box they will send your bird home in when you buy one. Thanks guys for the great suggestions. Both of you have more experience than I do with moving birds. Generally, it is only when I get a new bird that I need some sort of transport. Great suggestions from both of you!

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Pet Carrier They do come in a good variation of size's. If a bird goes frantic in one of these it should not get it's wings caught anywhere.
    http://www.trademe.co.nz/pets-animal...-844802119.htm

    I have used one of these to send Jack the Sulpher Crested Too down the line on a two day journey.

    Snowy came up from Nelson in one of these boxes. He was in this for about 3.5hrs and flown 400kms to me.


    And the pet shops here use these. I do have two of them, that I do use. But they are cardboard and a busy beak will do some chewing and possibly get free.


    And then I have the Hospital boxes I made up from fridge vege bins. As some of you will know I use these mostly for moving birds around. And only cover if I think it best to keep the bird in the dark to keep it quiet.


    Last edited by clawnz; 02-14-2015 at 05:37 PM.
    R.I.P my little ones.

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    When I first got Sunny, I took him in his cage, to the Vet for a check-up. At the time I did not have a bird carrier, nor any cardboard boxes I felt would work for him. I put his cage in the back seat of my car, and covered it on 3 sides, left the front side open. We got down the highway about 3 miles and he started to whistle, talk and sing. The Vet's Office receptionist sent a couple of the technicians out to my car to take him and his cage inside. Of course that was not like moving from one home to another. Maybe it depends upon the bird. I know when I bring new birds home from the Pet Shop, they are always scratching around the little cardboard boxes, wanting to escape and get out of them. But I also appreciate that they cannot get injured in the boxes either. It is just a matter of personal preference in my view.

    With a special needs bird, perhaps it is best they do not see anything on the move and are in the dark. I don't think I would want a special needs bird to ride that way, but again, it is personal preference.

    The first pic of the travel cage was the one I was speaking about. The second one looks like it might have been similar to a cockatiel breeding box (wooden). And the 3rd one is bigger than the ones I have brought birds home from the Pet Shop.

    So, I will amend my post to say that I have seen similar items here in the USA.

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    You are correct.
    It does come down to each bird in question and how they are.
    One think we did not mention above, is to be very calm and relaxed with-in close proximity to them, as they will pick up on any stress one shows.
    The box that Snowy traveled in is one that breeders ship birds in. Just this one was handmade by the breeder for him.
    R.I.P my little ones.

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Yes, I totally agree. Being calm and just being matter of fact will be the best approach. I am a firm believer that our birds pick up on our emotions. Being calm causes less stress for them. That box that Snowy traveled in was really a nice one. I would say it could be used over and over again with just a little cleaning for each time one usues it.

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    Thank you so much for all the responses!

    I do have the folding cardboard box (like the 2nd pic), and all my flock seem to transport fairly well in them. I think any of them being able to see where they were (in a car, driving down the road) would scare them, so I will stick with the boxes for now. Although a transport cage sounds very nice, I will have to look around for one and contemplate getting one.

    Clive, the story and pictures of Angel are so adorable! She must have been quite the little girl to own (wait, they own US). Also, your comment about being calm around them gave me an interesting idea. Spice (my female cockatiel) is quite the screamer when stressed, I will definitely make sure they are NOT in the same car, as I do believe that would make Aqua stressed. I think Aqua will be okay after a couple of minutes in the box, and I will talk to him the whole drive.

    I don't plan on changing toys or anything in the cages, but should I keep their room warmer for a while? Does that help calm them being warmer than usual?
    Proud owner of two tiels (Peachie and Spice) and two keets (Levi and Aqua)! :

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    I would say not to keep them too warm. I would keep the temp about the same as I always do. Too warm will not calm them at all.

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    The only other thing I would add is treats - I've noticed that for a lot of birds, millet has a soporific effect. So whenever Sammy's travelling (small transporting cage, partially covered), he gets lots of millet. Like more than he ever usually gets in one go. He bounces in happily, scoffs it down, usually runs about and screeches at a few cars and songs on the radio, and then zonks out in a happy little millet daze.

    Very cute. Effective for vet examines too.

    The only downside is sometimes he'll decide he's been 'shorted' on millet, and will hop on the travel cage and scream at me for treats lol


    Thanks Lee for the adorable sig!

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    Re: Moving with a geriatric keet

    We use small dog carrier, with a small ladder fixed on edge as a perch center. The sides are heavy canvas and there are a couple small windows covered with a semi dark mesh. It has an opening on the top and on one end for easy access. Because of the perch, my birds like traveling in it, and its semi dark so they keep fairly calm. The windows are shaped like bones, so most people find it amusing that we carry birds in it.

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