Pet birds normally are extremely healthy. A canary may easily reach the ripe old age of fifteen years. The same may be expected for cockatiels and lovebirds. The life-span of parakeets and finches are shorter — seven years is to be expected. Remember, these are average figures. Your bird may live to be much older.

Unfortunately, many owners, despite the best intentions, fail to properly care for their feathered friends. This leads to illness and to premature death. Here are some aspects of bird care that must not be neglected.

Many assume that all pet birds are tropical creatures. Except for parrots and lovebirds, this generally is not so. Any temperature that is comfortable for you, will be comfortable for your little friend.

Canaries and parakeets can not tolerate quick changes of temperatures. If the heating system breaks down, sending the mercury plummeting in your home, your pet is in grave danger. Before cold sets in, immediately, cover the cage with a towel, leaving only the front exposed. Cover completely at night. Try to use an electric heater to warm up the room as much as possible. If the heating problem will not be quickly remedied, relocate your bird to a warm place.

No bird can tolerate a draft. Most pet owners understand this during the cold weather. A draft is a moving column of air — hot or cold! No matter how warm the day might be, your bird may develop a fatal illness if left in the path of a breeze on a windowsill or to close to a fan or an air conditioner.

Proper rest is extremely important. Your bird’s cage should be covered every night at sunset and left covered until dawn. Too much light, too little light, or an irregular schedule causes a bird never to stop molting. Noise or light during the night also robs the bird of its rest. These conditions drain the birds system, stressing the organism, leading to illness and death.

Care for your bird properly and you can expect to enjoy its company for a long time.

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