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#216268 - 02/02/10 07:37 PM Tonto Hates Glasses  
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Tilas Offline
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(Hope this is okay, I'm copying what I posted int he other forum)

Hi everyone, it's been awhile since I've been here. Mom has a Bare Eyed Cockatoo named Tonto, and Tonto has unfortunately developed a disliking to me, which bothers me, cause I've always tried to be friendly to him, give him treats, play with him, etc. But more often then not, when he's out of his cage, he makes a point of attacking me. He flies at me, jumps on me and starts biting, and this have been going on for months. We've tried to deal with this, and tried to teach him nicely not to do it. I've tried ignoring the bite, ignoring him, putting him back in his cage, covering him up for awhile until he settles, and rewarding him with treats when he does nice things, like sitting calmly or waves or talking.
I've researched online, read books for bird training, talked to other bird owners... But it's only getting worse, to the point where if I even walk by the cage, he'll race across it and lunge at the bars at me.

Mom thinks part of the problem is that we've learned Tonto HATES glasses. Mom puts her reading glasses on, and when Tonto see them, he hisses at her with head feathers up. If she puts them away, he'll settle down. But I wear my glasses all the time, I have to wear them, I can barely see without them. So mom thinks it's another reason he's going after me, cause I wear glasses all the time, or maybe that when she wears hers, he's reminded of me... I dunno.

Strangely, dad wears glasses at all times too, but Tonto just loves dad. He's so sweet and playful with dad. We know he's gotten quite attached to dad, but then Tonto's always like males better then females. Dad is the only male in the house.

I don't know why he's developed a disliking to me. Possibly jealousy, my dog Rom is always with me. I'm just not sure how to tame this behavior. I can't not wear my glasses, I can't avoid the living room, and we can't have him biting me. We've tolerated most of it and tried to deal with it, but the final straw was a few days ago. Tonto was out, and he seemed in a good mood, talking and waving, so I held up my arm, trying to get him to land on it so he could get some flying exercise (I was about 10 feet from his cage). He landed on my arm by my wrist, then when I slowly turned to look at him, he rushed up my arm and bit my glasses and whipped them off my face! I jerked back in surprise and he jumped off and flew back to his cage, but he just grazed my eye! He just nicked my eye, and if my glasses weren't there he probably would have caused damage.

Whatever the case, the fact is we can't tolerate this anymore. Dad WON'T tolerate it. He won't have a dangerous animal in the house. As much as we love Tonto, we cannot have an animal that's acting viciously towards me or anyone. If we cannot find some way of curbing this behavior, we're going to have to re-home him. It's not fair to him to live in a place where he's not happy, and obviously he's not happy around me, so unless we can find a way to make peace... *sighs*. :\

We're fast running out of ideas, I need help, I can't find anything that's working. Would it be better to just find him a new home? Or is there anyway we can salvage this?

#216292 - 02/03/10 02:27 AM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: Tilas]  
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Tilas, what does Tonto like to eat? Can you give me 5 of his most favorite foods/treats from least to most important.


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216301 - 02/03/10 03:52 AM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Tilas, I was reading through your previous posts to refresh myself with Tonto's history.

Now, I'm VERY confused and am hoping that you can clear some of the discrepancies up.

http://www.mytoos.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=18176&Number=170188#Post170188

Quote:
Mom really likes Tonto, and Tonto really liked her too, but unfortunately, dads dog Rom (4 year old German shepherd/rotti cross, so he's big) is SUPER JEALOUS. So much so, whenever you try and give Tonto attention, Rom would bark or jump up at the cage, which would scare poor Tonto and make him squawk and scream. Not Roms fault really, it is HIS house after all. But poor Tonto was getting SO stressed out that he was seriously starting to pluck and squawking all the time.



Quote:
So as much as mom didn't want to, she decided it might be better for Tonto to come live at my house, since I don't have any pets. We think it'll be much better for Tonto here, because it'll be less stressful for him with no dog or cat around, and I spent pretty much 95% of the time I'm home in the living room area, so he can always see me and I can talk/play with him.


http://www.mytoos.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=21423&Number=206790#Post206790

Quote:
Mom has a 12 year old bare eyed cockatoo named Tonto. Normally this bird is shy, and doesn't really like to leave his cage.

Quote:
Now, here's the problem, when a certain friend comes over, (lets call her Jill) Tontos whole personality does a flip. He gets MEAN, but not with her, with ME! When I walk by, the LUNGES at me so hard he smacks his beak against the bars of his cage, and when I pass by cage door or stop to wave and talk to him (liek I always do), he comes out of that cage in an instant, and he jumps an attacks me! To make matters worse, after Jill leaves, for a few days afterward he's STILL mad at me and still tries to attack me.


Quote:
My parents don't know what to do about him anymore. I'm NOT going to ask my friend to stop coming over because of a bird, and dads very bothered by Tontos actions, and if Tonto ever managed to draw blood, dad will get rid of him, he refuses to have a violent animal in the house. Mom and I don't want it to come to that, but we can't understand what it is about Jill that makes Tonto go bonkers and attack me... Please help.... any ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


From your most recent posts, it sounds like you and Tonto are living in your parents home? Who does the dog belong to - you or your father? From what I'm reading, these attacks aren't unusual for Tonto.

We need to know exactly what is going on in the home environment and who is involved in Tonto's care and to what extent.


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216310 - 02/03/10 07:11 AM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Tilas Offline
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When we first got Tonto, Rom was very jealous, and for awhile, he stayed with me, at my house. During that time, Rom would come over occasionally, and that helped him adjust to Tonto where it wasn't Roms territory. That only lasted for a few months, then Tonto (and I), moved back home to my parents house. I own my own place, but moved out of it because my family decided it was better to keep 1 house running instead of 2, and my house is currently up for sale. So I've been back here for oh... about a year now I think. That first topic bout Tonto being at my house was back in 08, and it was the start of 09 we moved home. Since then, Rom has adapted to having the bird in the house, and pretty much ignores him now. Rom technically belongs to dad, but Rom spends most of his time with me, and is the most attached to me.

As for Tontos care, it's sort of shared I guess. Mom and dad change his food and water, mom and I clean the cage, but dad is the one who's home most of the time. Dad wasn't thrilled with the bird at first, but he's grown on him, for the most part. But when it comes to feeding him and cleaning his cage, dad leaves that to me and mom. Dad's self employed, so he works at home, and he is the one Tonto sees the most, and Tonto has attached himself to dad the most. He'll snuggle with dad, sit on his head while dad sleeps, and dad can pretty much pick him up and nudge him gently around, and Tonto won't do a thing.

For the most part, Tonto doesn't come out a lot, but we leave the cage door off, and sometimes he comes out on his own. Dad built a little jungle gym thing for him to climb on that sits right by his cage, so he doesn't have to go far from it.

Since he went after my glasses, I've kept my distance. I mean I wave and talk to him while he's in the cage, but I've made no attempt to pet him or call him over to me, and when he's out of the cage, I go downstairs to my room.

He still does that freakout if he sees Jill and I near each other, so we've been trying to make a point of going upstairs one at a time, or just keeping distance from him.

As for what Tonto likes to eat... Cucumbers are his total favorite, followed by plain bland cooked noodles, peanuts, the little pellet things that come in his seed bag, apple oatmeal, and crust from toast.

#216352 - 02/04/10 04:28 AM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: Tilas]  
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Thanks for the additional information - helps alot!

So what role does your father play in Tonto's life?

You do understand that Tonto's doesn't hate glasses from the other thread?

Once we know exactly what role dad (the favored person) plays in Tonto's world, we can begin rearranging things.

One thing I would like you to begin doing right away. When Tonto is in his cage, periodically throughout the day, put a piece of one of his favored foods in his food bowl and leave. Show it to him, then in the bowl it goes. You need to increase your value to him. And those favored foods should not be given to him by anyone other yourself. Keep the portions small - you don't want to fill him up because then the treat will lose it's value, and so will you.

I do have a question about his diet though. "The little pellet things that come in his seed bag". Is that the only pellets that he gets? What brand of seed mix are you using and what percentage is that of his total diet?


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216391 - 02/04/10 07:54 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Tilas Offline
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Uhm... well dad's just home the most really. He spends most of the day in the house, so Tonto sees him the most. Mom and I both work 8-5. Dad rarely changes Tonto's food/water, isn't much on giving him treats, and dad never cleans the cage. Dad sleeps on the couch every night, which is near the bird cage, so Tonto will sometimes come out and sit on him while he sleeps. Dad's a heavy sleeper, and doesn't even notice Tonto is there. When Tonto is out, he likes to sit on dads knee while he watches TV, and dad will scratch his head, or just let him sit there for hours.

Tonto just seems to really like men. He's affectionate to a lot of men that come in the house, especially older men. His previous owner was male, so maybe that's why.

I can start to do the treat thing, sure. I'll talk to mom so that I'm the only one to give him treats.

As for his diet... I don't remember what the food is called. I can get a photo of the bag, and what's in it, if you like. I think its simply called "Parrot Food". It has these big pellets that are the size of peanuts, there's dried bananas, peanuts, sunflower seeds and various other seeds in it. His parrot food is about 80% of his diet I guess. It's the only type of bird food we can get in town. The store only has 1 type of "parrot" and one type of "small bird" seed, and the small bird seed we only get on an emergency basis if they don't have the parrot kind. He wastes most of it cause it's too small. One time when we went to the city, we did pick up a bag of just pellets, but they were a different type, and he just would not eat them. He would throw them out of his cage. We'd come home to find pellets all over the floor.

We give him things like cucumbers, bananas, peas (he loves peas), oatmeal, noodles, crackers and other such stuff when we eat it. We make sure it's plain though, like if he gets a cracker, it's a normal non salted kind. Or a noodle is just a plain spaghetti noodle, no sauces or spices. He really likes it when we take a few noodles and drape them in the bars of his cage, he goes around picking all of them off.

Unfortunately, we live in such a small town (under 1000 people) that's so far away from a city (about 300 miles), our choices are extremely limited when it comes to bird food. Only 1 store (out of 3 in town) carries "parrot" type seed, and it's only the one brand, it's all they can get from their supplier.

#216674 - 02/08/10 06:36 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: Tilas]  
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Tilas, I'm still with you but I'm tied up today and it's going to take me a day or 2 to reply. I appreciate your patience.


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216794 - 02/10/10 02:50 AM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Well, before we get started, you need to make your father aware of how dangerous it is to have Tonto sleeping with him - for both Tonto and your father.

Seed mix should only be a small portion of his diet - like 10-20%. You can buy quality pelleted formulas online.

So, have you seen any changes since you have become the keeper of the treats these past few days?


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216835 - 02/10/10 08:29 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Tilas Offline
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He never plans for Tonto to sleep on him, just sometimes when dad sleep son the couch, he forgets Tonto's cage is open and Tonto comes out to join him. I'll ask him to try to remember to close the cage though.

I've looked online for pellets. My problem is either they won't ship this far north, won't ship to a PO Box, or the shipping is twice the cost of the pellets. Paying $30 for shipping on a $10 bag of pellets is out of the question. Unless you have some sites to suggest?

As for any changes, no, not really. I've been the only one to give him treats and if my fingers get near the cage, he tries to nip them, so I drop the treat from above down into the dish. I don't put my hands inside his cage at all mind you, whenever his water/food needs changing, I ask mom or dad to do it.

He was in a bad mood this morning, I think cause mom left for work early and didn't uncover him. He started throwing a tantrum (buries his head in his food dish and makes this weird roaring sound... it's not his normal "I want attention" scream) so I uncovered his cage, and he promptly told me to "Go away", so I just walked away.

#216856 - 02/10/10 11:09 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: Tilas]  
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Dirtgirl I am sure that Tilas will really appreciate your helping him locate a food supplier, but I did delete your post because it's in the ABA forum. Would you please start a new topic in the Diet forum - you can title it Canadian food suppliers or something similar. Bev has some links to some Canadian places as well for Tilas. Perhaps others will too.

Thanks for understanding.


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#216861 - 02/10/10 11:22 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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Are you showing him the treat first? If he strikes at the cage bars when you go to place it in his bowl, don't put it in there (just yet). Make sure he sees the treat and see if he is showing interest in it. Try again. If he snaps, step back, show him the treat and try again. You have to set him up to succeed by giving him the opportunity to do it right. He should never not get the treat. The instant that he shows less aggression (snapping) that treat goes in his bowl and you tell him what a good boy he is.

With repetition he will learn that if he wants the treat, he needs to stand there (without snapping). Once he makes the association (which I bet doesn't take long), and the two of your are comfortable, we can then move to the next step.

Oh and remember, it is very important that only you give him his favored treats. And those treats have to be something that he absolutely adores and is willing to work for. You most likely will find that his preference will change from day to day. The reward has to be valuable to him.

Last edited by EchosMom; 02/10/10 11:25 PM.

Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#217090 - 02/14/10 09:52 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: EchosMom]  
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I do hold the treat up and show it to him. Usually it's a peanut or pellet. I need to get more cucumber though, that's one of his top favs.

#217593 - 02/24/10 03:00 PM Re: Tonto Hates Glasses [Re: Tilas]  
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Tilas, how are things going?

Bev


Owner: DebRan Bird Toys

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