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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Pet Care Library > Articles > Bird Toy Safety

Bird Toy Safety


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Because birds are such intelligent animals, they need mental stimulation. Bird toys and accessories help provide this mental stimulation. They can also help in maintaining the beak and nails at their proper length.

Providing your bird with toys and appropriate chew items will go a long way towards eliminating undesirable behavior such a screaming or nipping. That's because your bird will not have so much pent-up energy that it becomes unmanageable when you want to play with it.

There are a variety of bird toys available; some are better suited for certain types of birds. Select toys that are appropriate for the type and size of your bird. Toys that are too small will break and shatter with large beaks. Toys that are too large will frighten smaller birds.

Plastic toys and metal toys with bells are ideal for the smaller birds, such as Budgerigars (Parakeets) and Cockatiels. Rawhides, wooden toys, metal toys with bells, and rope toys are also suggested.

Plastic toys should never be given to a larger parrot, such as a Macaw. A large parrot can dismantle a plastic toy in seconds and could ingest the pieces. Instead, provide big birds with larger durable rope toys, rawhides, leather, and large wooden or acrylic toys.

All toys should be made with nontoxic materials. Leather should be untreated or vegetable dyed. Wood should be untreated or colored with a nontoxic coloring.

Make sure the toy is sturdy. It should not have small parts that could be broken off and swallowed, or clasps that could pierce the beak, mouth or eyes. Toys with smooth edges are best. Toys should be strung on sisal or cotton rope, or a closed-link chain (where each chain is welded shut). When the end of a piece of rope begins to unravel, clip it off so your bird does not become entangled.

Purchase several toys and frequently rotate them into the cage to keep it interesting for your bird. Wash and disinfect toys when they become soiled and discard them if you notice excessive wear.

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