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Something Wagging Train Your Dog Challenge- Avian Style

Something Wagging This Way Comes

January is National Train Your Dog Month so Pamela at Something Wagging This Way Comes put together a Train Your Dog Challenge. I decided I would join in with my bird, Eco. Yes, you heard right, my bird.  Pamela opened up the challenge to any species so I figured it was time to finally work on teaching Eco the trick I’ve been wanting to work on- putting a coin in a piggy bank.

Why my bird and not one of my training loving dogs? The goal of the challenge is benefit our relationship.  I know my relationship with my dogs is good. And it’s actually good with Eco, but with him it’s always a work in progress.

I got Eco almost 2 years ago. I had been wanting to add another bird to my flock so had been looking around for one that I knew was meant for me.  So what made Eco special?  He bit.  Yes, he was a biter.  Isn’t that a quality everyone looks for in a companion?

The woman who was handfeeding him was looking for a special home for him because at the young age of 4 months he was pretty vicious with his beak.  I love learning behavior problems and how to work with them, so I jumped at the chance to take Eco.  Once he arrived, he didn’t disappoint.  While he would let you handle him, he was quick to bite and hang on.

I worked on teaching him a few behaviors- targeting, retrieving a ball and putting it in a cup, retrieving a ring and putting it over a post. We had fun, but it really didn’t matter what I taught him.  The main thing was the bond we were building.

Between training and learning what some of his triggers are (he’s not an early morning bird), plus a little singing when I want to put him to sleep at night, biting rarely happens.  I don’t do as much clicker training as I would like but do try to do it occasionally to keep the bond going.

I’ll be posting updates (and maybe some video if I can get over my hatred of being filmed) as we work the challenge, so be sure to check back!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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