4 Things to Consider Before Getting a Parrot

If you're thinking of getting an exotic animal as a pet, your financial situation might be an important thing to consider. But there are other things to think about too, such as their quality of life and the fact that some of them can live for a very long time, even up to 100 years!
4 Things to Consider Before Getting a Parrot
Eugenio Fernández Suárez

Written and verified by the vet Eugenio Fernández Suárez.

Last update: 21 December, 2022

Getting a parrot as a pet is doubtlessly a huge responsibility and not something to take lightly. Today, we’ll look at some of the things you need to consider before getting a parrot, both for their well-being and your own.

If you’re considering getting a parrot, consider getting two

This is one of the most important things to consider. Parrots are complex emotional creatures and depression in parrots is a very real thing. One of the best ways to avoid emotional problems is to have two or more parrots living together to keep each other company.

Many people believe that simply providing them with a mirror will be enough, but sadly it’s just a myth.

However, if you’re not able to have two parrots, it’s important instead to make sure that you spend plenty of time with them. They need interaction, and they need to play.

Getting two parrots is one of the things to consider before getting a parrot.

How much does a parrot cost?

Keeping a parrot as a pet is expensive, and they can cost up to $3,500. However, most of the cost is actually in caring for them. They need the right habitat, toys and stimuli, food, and then there are the vet bills. These are all things to take into consideration.

In general, a parrot can cost at least $700 a year, and since they can live for between 50 and 80 years, this is quite some investment. The total cost of keeping a parrot for their entire lives can cost a minimum of $35,000.

So, if you go for two parrots to keep each other company, you’re already looking at a considerable sum of money over the course of their lives.

Furthermore, they’re prone to behavior problems, and the most common way to resolve this is to contract specialist trainers and ethologists. This will just be another expense to add to the bill.

Where are you going to keep your parrot?

The ideal place to keep a parrot is in its own cage. This should be large and at least five feet high and six or seven feet wide so that they can fly and exercise.

Two parrots in a cage.

There are small cages on the market, but you’ll need to let your parrot out for a number of hours a day so that they can exercise. And, obviously, this will require supervision.

Regardless of what size you opt for, the important thing is for it to be big enough so that your parrot can fully extend and flap its wings. And, ideally, it should be big enough to allow them to fly from one end to the other.

Do I have enough time for a parrot?

Unfortunately, many parrots end up abandoned or passed on as an inheritance because they live for so long. Some species can even live to 100 years old, and many live until at least 60.

Are you ready to live with an animal for that long? Are you going to be able to care for them if you move to another city? What if you get married or move in with your partner? A parrot is a lifelong commitment, so it’s really important to think about it very carefully.

A parrot playing with a toy.

There are some species that don’t live for as long or that require less attention, such as parakeets or lovebirds. But it’s important to point out that these smaller Psittacidae can be quite noisy, so you’ll need plenty of patience. But even these birds can live longer than you’d expect.

All of these birds also have complicated dietary requirements, require enormous commitment, and can misbehave. But, if you’re ready to take this step, then go right ahead!

But most importantly of all, these are affectionate and emotional animals who can be affected very badly by abandonment or abuse. Caring for any pet is a huge responsibility, but for parrots, this reaches a whole new level. Consider each of these four things carefully before getting a parrot.

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The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.