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#217524 - 02/23/10 06:02 AM Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!"  
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Hello,

Well, here I am. I wish I could say that Miss Thor is sitting right here beside me for "our" lesson, but there would be SO few keys left on the keyboard, so...

Although I am not The Chosen One, Thor and I have made quite a bit of progress in the less-than-a-year that she has blessed us with her featherdust. Where before she would not step up AT ALL for me, now she does very well...except in the prescence of company... as you might have read in the "Mister Towel" thread, which I regretabley wrote, thinking I was "onto" something good. Truly, I have to laugh because she is really no different than my three year old nephew who delights in pushing his parents buttons to the "enth" degree when we are all together. Maybe "Mister Towel" would work on him without negative effects? I would like to try and better understand how to provide more positive reinforcements for her so that I do not cause her to be leary of me.

Like I said, when company is around, she turns that spotlight right on her big pink self, and all the mischief begins. When it's just she and I, she really does quite well, and she is usually less cooperative only when it is time to go to bed. Tonight, she knew it was time, and when I offered my arm to her, she put one foot on my arm and looked right at me as if to say, "Is this good enough?" She knows that she can make me laugh, and uses that to her advantage during these times, of course. I do not let my bloodpressure rise ( lesson learned early on, and was one of the hardest bites I got - she did not break the skin, but sure made me practice my Zen breathing! ), or let my voice go up. I don't get pushy - I just don't give up. Eventually, she'll get on my arm. When she does, I have tried to offer her a treat afterwards, but she throws it on the floor. Gee...wonder what she's saying? smile

Ok, guys, "Lead and I will follow..."

Thanks in advance,

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#217548 - 02/24/10 12:14 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Hey there Cathy. The stepping up w/one foot and "Is that good enough" cracked me up.

Does "company" include your spouse?

I completely understand her hesitation at bedtime. Since hubby is the chosen one, is she reluctant to step up for him also, or is it always you that puts her to bed?


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
#217572 - 02/24/10 04:43 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: EchosMom]  
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Hi EM,

Yep, she's a little "one foot wonder" all right!

No, I don't think that she considers Frank to be "company" - when it's bedtime, he's the one that she scurries over to to try and hide under to avoid being put to bed to begin with. Frank just pretends that she is not there and doesn't laugh ( difficult for him also!) while she runs amuck across him. She'll stop and do the "one foot" thing on my arm, then she will pause long enough to think about "maybe" putting the second foot on there, then she's off and hopping. I feel that this is strictly "I don't want to go to bed!" antics, as five minutes prior, she would be yawning her little head off and giving us the "I'M SO TIRED AND NOBODY WILL PUT ME IN MY CAGE!" yell. So...it seems to be purely mischief at night, in my opinion; I don't mind mischief one bit, but I don't want her to start thinking "Ha! Now I'm not going to step up AT ALL." She really saves her way out antics for people that show up that she doesn't know, then it's "Katie Bar The Door!"

Thor would step up for Frank if he was hanging upside down from the ceiling with Mister Towel tied to his belt! When she's feeling spunky, she'll climb on top of her cage because she knows that I can't reach her and strut around, giving me the ol' "Heh, heh, heh!" eyeball. Frank can walk over and say "Thor, you come here," and she looks at him sheepishly, "Ok, honeybun..." and instantly she's on his arm. So, no, he doesn't have any problems with her there.

I am usually the one to put her to bed most of the time. When Frank does, she'll be sitting on his arm, looking up with him with her crest popped up like a question mark, "Are you SURE you want to put me to bed?" and plop, into her cage she goes without so much as a peep, well except for "Hi Thor!" He can do anything with her. I think she just tests me mostly, but would like to have her be a bit more "cooperative"...Hmm..yeah, maybe that word is not in Thor's dictonary, however.

What should I do differently at bedtime? I sing to her and she sways back and forth on my arm with her feathers all fluffed out, seemingly enjoying my horrible voice; but as soon as I start to head towards her cage, she's hops off and then we have to start all over again.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#217574 - 02/24/10 04:55 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Cathy, we need to increase your value to Thor. Until further notice, Frank is in charge of getting Thor to bed for the night. OK? Thor needs to learn that good things come when she steps up for you.

Same for company. If you have her out, again Frank should be the one that returns her to it's cage when it's time.

What are her favored treats - can you give me 5 in order of importance to her - starting w/the least favored to the most favored.


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
#217577 - 02/24/10 05:32 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: EchosMom]  
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Favorite treats in order of least importance...let's see...

5. Peanuts in shell (Human grade, of course ) - I might as well just throw them on the floor myself.

4. Granny Smith Apple

3. Cooked broccoli

2. Baked Potato

1. SWEET POTATO

Now, of course, this would depend on the day. And on any particular given day, a cooked chicken bone leg is something that she really enjoys ~ sorry to gross out any vegetarians out there, but she loves that marrow! Yuk!

I will inform the Chosen One about his newfound "duty." I can see the eyes rolling already! smile

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#217669 - 02/26/10 02:28 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Ok, you have now identified the currency which you must use to increase your value to Thor. Those 5 things must come only from you. Always begin with the item of lowest value, in case you have to up the ante. Be sure that she sees what you have for her, and ask if she would like to step up. When she does, immediately reward her. Remember, keep the pieces small because you don't want her to get full. Food isn't reinforcing to a full tummy.

How did Frank take his newly assigned duties?

When you have company, either leave her in the cage, or be sure that Frank is there to reel her in.


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
#217890 - 03/02/10 07:23 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: EchosMom]  
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Hello

Sorry for the delay; crazy weather here in Tennessee. I sure wish that Thor could help chop wood instead of chop up the house!

Thor is doing good so far, and Frank is doing fine with his "assigned duties."

I do have a question, though; if I am rewarding her for stepping up with her favorite treats, is that not going to make her expect a treat each and every time, thus conditioning her to perform a task, not because she wants to, but because she gets a treat? Does that mean that I will always have to have a treat in my pocket in order for her to step up, and what will I need to be prepared for when I want her to step up and do not have a treat?

I work with my horses using techniques that are based on pressure and release, sometimes also known as "comfort/discomfort." Horses understand this because they communicate this way with each other every day of their lives. If a horse wants another horse to move, the one horse walks into the other horses' space ( pressure ). The other horse doesn't like that kind of pressure, so it moves out of the way ( release). The motivating factor to "move" can be as soft a suggestion as simply stretching their nose out into the other horse's space...or it can be as strong a suggestion as a nip on the shoulder. That is the undisputed language of herd dynamics. There is no malice involved with this type of training. The "reward" is the release of the pressure...whether it is physical ( the release of my heel against a horse's side) or emotional ("Whew! I didn't die when she asked me to cross the creek and get my feet wet...and I MADE IT!"..from the horse's perspective, of course!)

I once tried to teach one of my horses to go to the four corners of the arena by putting a bucket in each corner and putting a peppermint in each bucket (the goal was something larger, of course, but I am going to keep this simple). He got a reward everytime he went to a corner. Pretty soon, I only put one peppermint in one bucket, leaving the other three empty; and he still went to every corner...searching for the elusive mint. The next time, I put no buckets and no mints in any of the corners; and what did he do? Nothing. He stood in the middle of the arena. He was acting only purely for the reward, nothing else. If the buckets weren't there and the mints weren't there, the corners had no meaning to him. I, of course, had to learn a different technique that caused the corners to "mean something" to him instead of using bribery. I had not found the correct motivating factor at that time.

So, my question is, what am I teaching Thor? Would this not be considered a bribe? To step up on my arm because she wants to (release of pressure...but what is the motivating "pressure?" )...or...to step up only because she knows that I will give her a treat for doing so. With my horses, when they know they aren't going to get a treat, they aren't as interested in cooperating, so I try not to "condition" them to that, instead relying on the same methods they use within the herd. How would a cockatoo in the wild communicate with another cockatoo if it wanted to share the same branch....or wanted the one cockatoo to move off of that branch? I would imagine that one cockatoo would not walk up to the other with a piece of sweet potato in its beak and say, "Ok, I'll trade you..."

I don't mean to question or make light of anything, but I am just trying to understand and can't help but to also try and see the humor in these kinds of things. In dealing with the psychology of prey animals, which is something that cockatoos and horses both share, I am always interested to learn what and how they think. If there are "cockatoo psychology" books out there, I'd love to know where to get them. smile


Until next time, I will continue to delegate to Frank and work with her as you suggested. I look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you again,

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#217902 - 03/02/10 03:49 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Cathy, I really don't understand why people have such a problem with giving treats. The treat is her pay check. You request a certain behaviour, the bird gives it and you pay the bird. I like to get paid for what I do, don't you? Animals are no different. We just need to figure out what they are willing to work for, what they value. At my place, it's pine nuts, head scratches, a little dance, a little song, safflower seeds, almond pieces, etc. Mostly it's the pine nuts and they only get those for requested behaviour so they are of high value to my birds just like chocolate is to me. LOL And no you won't always need to have a treat in your pocket. There are lots of people out there who think the same way as you do and they see "paying their bird" as a bribe and those people have screaming/biting parrots. A bribe (showing the bird the treat) can be used in the beginning especially when working with a bird who might have had an unpleasant past with humans but is then phased out so that the bird doesn't see the treat now. Humans seem to have this outlook that animals should do everything we want them to do just because we want them to. Why should they? Because we are the superior species? I beg to differ. We are an arrogant species. I want good behaviour from my birds and I am willing to pay them and I do not want to use any kind of force because that will backfire and I do not want to go back to having birds that bite me because I make them do things. You don't want to be on the receiving end of a large cockatoo beak. Humans will get away with pushing an animal around for so long and then one day, bang, they get bitten and the animal gets blamed. It happens all the time. I think you would pick up ABA really fast. You should join us when we go through the book on ABA.

I have no problem giving my birds a pine nut for doing what I ask them to do. Most of the time, when I present my hand, the birds step up because they have learned that good things happen when they get on my hand. They don't always get a treat anymore but not because I have a problem doing that but because I don't always have treats in my pockets. A 1 to 1 ratio (continuous reinforcement) works best in the beginning. You ask the bird for a behaviour, the bird complies, the bird gets a treat (paid). When it is bed time, there is a routine and all my birds get pine nuts although sometimes Zazu wants to be paid with a head scratch (her currency for that particular time).

Training techniques are changing and the smart trainers are moving towards positive reinforcement training. You gave up too soon on that horse and those corners. If you rewarded him on a 1 to 1 ratio for a longer period of time, you probably would have gotten the behaviour you wanted from him. And all for a few peppermints. That sounds like a deal to me. Eventually, when you only use positive reinforcement, you become a powerful reinforcer to the animal. My birds think (constuct I know LOL)I am the greatest thing since sliced bread. And all for a few pine nuts. I get the behaviour I request (95% of the time) and I can live with that. ABA was the best thing I've ever done for me and my birds.

And that is one of the lessons of ABA, if you are made to do something, you will expend the least amount of energy possible but if you are paid, then it's a different story. You work for your money because then you can buy the things you value with it like food and a roof over your head.

Animals given a choice of free feeding or working for their food, will choose to work for the food. Isn't that cool? So if you request the behaviour and the animal does it for you, is not that animal working for you and shouldn't that animal be paid for that?

Make sense? Am I rambling? LOL I am so passionate about this because I know it works.

Bev


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#218021 - 03/04/10 06:26 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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Hi Bev,

I do understand what you are saying, and I don't really have a problem giving treats. I did not understand that it was a 1:1 ratio in the beginning, so I wrongly assumed that I would be giving her treats all the time, forever. This is a learning experience for me as much as it is for Thor, so I was not trying to diminish the power of positive reinforcement at all. I strongly believe in that as well, and like you said, sometimes treats don't just have to be in the form of food, as in ZaZu's head scratches. Now I have a better picture. Just trying to better understand....

Like I said, the story about the horse was shortened for the sake of the post. I did not give up on him by any means...just changed the pathway a little. This was the very same horse that when we went into the arena and he saw the buckets in the corners, he instantly ran over and cleaned them all out before we even got STARTED. Shoii is a brilliant horse; even with his broken leg ,his desire to keep learning and "doing" is remarkable..but then again, there is nothing wrong with his "heart." My challenge with him is always how to keep from being a boring human. I buy peppermints in the 7lb bag from Sam's on a regular basis, so yes, I do agree with you about treats, even though my post may not have quite sounded like it.

No, I did not think you were rambling. I know when someone is passionate about what they believe in, as so many of the people on this site are. I am grateful for all the help and suggestions so far...otherwise, I'd really be in a mess!

Ok, now...what do I do about this? When Thor gets on my arm, and I give her her treat, she takes it in her foot and throws it right on the floor...while still sitting on my arm! Obviously, I have no value to her whatsoever now!haha! She did not used to do this previously...but then she didn't used to get on my arm very well, either. Is this a test? Do I leave the treat on the floor?

She seems to be a little more moody lately, meaning that she'll be playing on the floor just fine with her toys, and all the sudden she'll make a beeline for my tennis shoe and try to bite it; out of the clear blue sky. Completely out of character for her. She seems content and quiet one moment and the next, she seems agitated. Could this be related to the upcoming change of seasons or a power play? She has also started spending much more time with me instead of Frank, but she is not exhibiting any type of breeding behavior. Where she used to sit on Frank's chair, now she is spending a lot more time with me...sometimes just sitting...sometimes just "harrassing." Could this just a temporary change of "persons?"

In the mornings, she comes out and has breakfast with me and/or Frank if he's available. Then she'll ride on my shoulder while I run the vacuum, saying "Hi Thor! Hi Thor!" She really likes a clean floor! smile Then she climbs up and down the stairs while I sit at the bottom watching her and telling her how talented she is; then it's off to jump on the bed with her for a while. After that, she likes to sit on my knee and have me preen her headfeathers, which she is LOADED with new pins, currently. (Hmmm...could that be causing her "angst?" )During this entire time together, she will step up on my arm every single time I ask her to...but often she'll come over and put one foot on my arm and look at me as if to say "May I?" and when I say "ok" she hops right on (This of course is in complete opposition to the previous bedtime ritual of her one footed "Is this good enough?"). But when I give her her treat, that is when she throws it on the floor. Am I doing something wrong? She's very sweet during the day when we are together...it is at night right before bedtime that she is a little monster.

Thank you again for your post. I so appreciate the thought you put into it and the time in which you took to write it.

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218034 - 03/04/10 03:15 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Cathy, no Thor is not testing you. The treat was not valuable enough at that particular time. That happens sometimes. You just need to find a higher value treat.

I had this same problem with Sally and it was only at night. I eventually figured out (after months of her biting me or trying to bite me), that I wasn't spending enough time with her and that I needed to pay her (pine nut or two) when she did step up for me. For the bedtime routine, they always get paid. It's usually pine nuts for Sally, Gypsy and Nikki and a head scratch for Zazu although sometimes Zazu does want a pine nut. I try to give each bird a couple minutes of one-on-one time before they go to bed. The pine nuts are only given for requested behaviour so they must earn them.

Pin feathers are uncomfortable especially when there are lots of them. Does Thor like baths?

Bev


Owner: DebRan Bird Toys
#218093 - 03/05/10 06:31 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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Hmmmm.....I will have to try to figure out what a higher value treat is going to be for her....

Thor loves baths and requests them often. She is afraid of the shower, but loves the kitchen sink. I have a shower perch with suction cups that I put in the sink, while she approvingly watches, saying "Hi Thor! Hi Thor!" until her spa is ready to go.

When she wants a bath, she'll come in the kitchen and tug on my pants leg with her foot. She is not interested in one every day, but twice a week seems to be what she prefers. Bathtime is when she really "whoops it up," hopping up and down on the countertop and bobbing her head, spredding her wings out and sometimes drinking a gallon of water which seems to find its way OUT just as quickly as it finds its way IN. Afterwards, she fluffs out on the door of her cage for a little while. That is one of our "special times" together. If Frank comes in the kitchen, she stops playing and looks at him with a "I wasn't doing anything" kind of look. As soon as he's out of there, she's back to splashing around.

No problems stepping up for bathtime! smile

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218186 - 03/06/10 07:27 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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So is it possible Cathy, that Thor wants to spend more time with you and that's why she won't step up to go to bed? She steps up to have a bath because she likes having a bath. Can you try that?

Spend 1/2 hour with her, focused, playing a special game, dancing/singing, whatever. Have a favourite treat that she gets if she steps up on request to go to bed after the play time? I have a sweet potato mash that my birds get every night before they go to bed and then their warm organic juice. Would you like the recipe? It's very simple and I freeze it in ice cube trays.

And let me know how it goes.

Bev


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#218431 - 03/22/10 06:14 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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Hi Bev!

Well, since I couldn't run down and post for the last couple of weeks, I had plenty of time to focus on Miss Thor...

I am happy to report that we have made quite a bit of progress, and that she will now step up 90% of the time. Even when she runs and hides under the furniture, I can confidently put my arm into just about any crevice and return with an M2.. and ALL my appendages.

I have learned to be gently "assertive" without upsetting her, and she has learned that I am not going to give up. The most interesting thing is that I also learned that she really doesn't "want to" bite me ... she is a BIG bluffer. She had me fooled for quite some time. When I would offer her my arm, she would act like she was going to really grab a hold of me, and of course I would hesitate. That, of course, told her everything SHE needed to know. Well, over the past couple of weeks, I just threw caution to the wind and decided to call her on it; if I got bit, then I would just have to deal with that, but I needed to know to what was going to happen. What happened was a big, fat nothing. I know that could change at any time. But in this particular situation, once she realized that I didn't "believe" her, she hopped right up onto my arm and has continued to do so since. And since that time, she's been doing much better about going to bed as well.

I'm not sure about whether or not she wants to spend more time with me at night, so much as when she's ready to go to bed, she's ready to go. She seems to have a very strong "clock" about when it's time for her to go to sleep and gets crabby if we wind up staying up even 15 minutes past that time. As soon as she is in her cage, she quiets down immediately and starts grinding her beak. And yes, I would love whatever recipes you would like to send my way. She loves sweet potatoes.

So good to be back, and thank you so much for the help and suggestions!

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218441 - 03/22/10 02:10 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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So where would you like to go from here? Or are you satisfied with the way things are going?

Bev

Cathy, are you taking away her right to choose whether or not she steps on your arm? What does "gently assertive" look like? When I put my birds to bed, they get paid. 95% of the behaviours I ask for from them, I get but there are still times when I pay them with things they value. The two pay periods are in the morning when I need to get up and out the door in less than one hour and when I put them to bed. Bird currency at my place is pine nuts and head scratches.

Last edited by ZazuSally; 03/22/10 04:46 PM. Reason: added something

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#218466 - 03/23/10 05:25 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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I didn't think that I might be taking away her right to step on my arm, but maybe I am and don't realize it.

Tonight she got paid a strawberry for stepping off my arm and onto her perch to go to bed. She was quite happy with that currency. That seems to be working quite well.

I guess what I was calling "gently assertive" was when she is in a spot ( like under a dresser ) where if I were to turn my back and walk away, she would chunk a piece out of; so I need to ask her to come out of there. It usually goes something like this:

( Thor pokes her head out from underneath the wooden dresser, where she knows she is not supposed to be, ergo, she makes a beeline for it on a regular basis )

Me: "Thor, you aren't supposed to be underneath there. Come over here, please."

(Thor gives me the ol' one eye: Really? Are you sure? )

( I kneel down and put my arm underneath the dresser, to which she politely puts one foot on, still looking at me... Good enough? )

Me: "No, Thor, not good enough... both feet, please."

(Thor takes the other foot off and puts the OTHER foot on my arm .... do you know how hard it is not to laugh when I'm doing this? )

Me: "Thor...step up, please...both feet."

(Thor steps up and says "Hi Thor!" I praise her profusely, then we go and get a treat or do something fun )

I don't remove my arm, nor do I push it towards her. She can move as far away from my arm as she wants or completely run out from underneath the dresser if she wants to.

What I meant by being "gently assertive" was that I don't give up and walk away. I'm trying to keep her sensitivity in mind and not pressure her, but maybe I am inadvertantly. She seems "happy" when she steps up on my arm, so I assumed I had not caused her any pressure. When I did not do that early on was when she pinched me pretty good. It was my own fault. But we hardly "knew each other" back then. Now its a little different in just a year's time .

She loves to be praised, sometimes more than she loves treats. When she steps up and I go on about how good she is, she'll bob her head up and down several times and fluff her cheek feathers out while sitting on my arm. The other day, when I was praising her for stepping up, she laid her head on my shoulder and said "good bird", which was a first.

I know I've still got so much to learn, Bev. I hope I'm not failing ABA miserably. Thank you for everything. I will keep plugging along and probably return off and on as new questions arise. Please let me know if there is a better way to negotiate her out from underneath furniture, as that is currently her favorite means of entertainment with us.

Thanks again,

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218473 - 03/23/10 02:14 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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Cathy, you are not failing ABA. As long as you are moving towards using positive reinforcement only, you and Thor can only succeed. I just want people to avoid all the mistakes I made when I first got birds. I used to be the boss and I have the scars to prove it. LOL

The best way to keep Thor from under a piece of furniture is to block access because if she decides that furniture would make good nest material, you can kiss it goodbye and it won't take very long either. A simple antecedent change (put something in front of it so she can't go under it) would be the way to go.

We are going to be going through the book called Understanding Applied Behaviour Analysis if you would like to join in. The book is under $20 at Amazon.com

Cathy, we are all learning about our beloved parrots. Mine teach me things all the time and nobody knows it all even though it seems some people think they do. LOL

Bev


Owner: DebRan Bird Toys
#218483 - 03/24/10 03:27 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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I think you are making good progress Cathy!


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
#218491 - 03/24/10 03:58 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: EchosMom]  
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Thanks Bev and EM for your kind support and suggestions. I'm going to go on Amazon and find that book.

Ha ha... you're going to love this...

About that dresser and blocking its access underneath? Well, that's not the LEAST of our worries. Our home is a post and beam construction, i.e, the world's largest free standing supply of nesting material in the eyes of ANY cockatoo... everywhere they turn! Wooden spindle stair railing, 10" exposed floor to ceiling beams, wood flooring, lots and LOTS of wooden doors, cabinets, and moulding ... Oh LORD, you just can't imagine how I simply cannot take my eyes off of her for a SECOND! We've decided our next home is going to be made of concrete; floor, walls, ceiling. And with a big fat drain in the middle of it to wash feather dust and bird poop away!

Thor and I spent some quiet time together again tonight, and she did something else that she hasn't done before. We were upstairs and she was sitting on the upper part of my arm while I was singing to her. She had her cheek feathers fluffed out so much that I couldn't even see her beak. While I was singing, she stretched her wing out and layed in over my shoulder as she layed her head on my arm. It was very sweet. I couldn't sing to her anymore because I got a little choked up and teary eyed.

To me, there just aren't any words for that kind of profound expression from a beautiful creature trying so very hard to fit into a world it has been forced to live in.

Thank you both again! I'm off to find a book!

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218496 - 03/24/10 04:16 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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EchosMom Offline
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Originally Posted By: ThorsMom
To me, there just aren't any words for that kind of profound expression from a beautiful creature trying so very hard to fit into a world it has been forced to live in.


Amen to that! I'm glad the two of you enjoyed that precious moment together - I suspect there will be many more to come.


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
#218513 - 03/24/10 01:33 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: EchosMom]  
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Ditto...Beautiful.


Flock is Nina (U2), Tootsie (U2), Baby (LSC), Ruke (TAG),& Birdie (T2),
#218515 - 03/24/10 02:16 PM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: Rukesmom]  
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ZazuSally Offline
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Cathy, that house sounds perfect for a Too so you are going to have to buy another house for yourself. LOL

I just want to make sure everyone has the book before we begin to go through it. Let me know when you have yours.

Bev

PS: I just get all teary eyed when one of mine bites me. LOL Nikki got me the other day but it was because Zazu flew in like a Harpy eagle and scared her. I know what you mean though.


Owner: DebRan Bird Toys
#218530 - 03/25/10 04:42 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ZazuSally]  
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ThorsMom Offline
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Thank you for waiting, but please go ahead and start without me. It takes FOREVER for packages to arrive to us, so it probably won't be until next week before I get it. I'll hop on in once it arrives, or wait until the next time if it's too late.

Thanks again!

Cathy


Cockatoos Leave Feather Dust On Your Soul.......
#218535 - 03/25/10 06:16 AM Re: Thor M2 "Step Up Thor....Nope....Come back here!" [Re: ThorsMom]  
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EchosMom Offline
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Cathy, I'd be happy to scan and email you individual Chapters as we move along until your book arrives.


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
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