The time has come to give your baby parrot that first bath.
Baby parrots do get dirty pretty soon. Smelly too!
As babies, they haven’t yet learned to clean their beak before they groom, and so frequently carry over quite a lot of food from their beak to their feathers while acquiring their essential preening skills. Baby birds are going to require a few baths before weaning. Unlike adult birds, they can’t rely on a plentiful supply of powder down to trap dirt and then fall off their body. Furthermore a baby’s feathers aren’t as protective as they’ll become for an adult parrot.
Baby parrots have a low resistance to germs and bacteria during their first year, i.e. while their immune system is building up. Be very careful about the bacteria present on our hands. The first thing to keep in mind when handling your baby bird is having washed your hands thoroughly.
Here’s a way to go about giving your baby a bath.
Before the actual fist bath, make sure you’ve planned a few visit to the unknown territory of the sink. Distract your baby’s attention by chatting a bit and telling her what you are doing till she gets comfy in this new environment. Less than a minute afew times will work better than going there for an extended amount of time only once. This way the baby bird will have the time to recognize these unfamiliar surroundings, but it won’t last long enough to worry her.
When the big day has arrived, prepare a big enough water dish or use the sink, and fill it with about 2 inches of warm water. Gradually carry your parrot near the water and arrange for a few drops of water to get on her feathers and her beak. If she gets scared, do not insist but just take her away and try again later until she becomes used to the sink. The main idea here is not to hurry things, but rather to take your time so the baby doesn’t grow up being afraid of water and/or the sink.
After a short time, feel free to start trickling a little water over her back. Keep talking to her all the while to make her feel safe, and possibly keep her mind off what’s happening. Now try to lower your bird into the water so that the warm water gets on her feet, which at that stage should still be resting on the palm of your hand, Then encourage her to step into the sink or water bowl. Be careful not to completely submerge your baby parrot though.
Once she’s nice and clean, take her out of the water and wrap her up in a towel to start drying. It’s better to finish drying your baby bird with a hair drier set on low. Here again you want to be careful and avoid any risk of heating her fragile skin too much, and a good way to do this is to set the temperature on cool if you can, and also to keep your hand between the air and the baby to make sure this remains a delicate process throughout.
Hopefully your baby bird will enjoy this experience, and so will you, so that once the apprehension of the first bath is over, future baths and showers will be tons of fun for you and your bird.