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Choosing Bird Perches

May 1, 2022
Bird Day is coming up May 4th! Our feathered friends make very fun and cheerful little pets. Polly is both a cuddle bug and a comedian! One thing that is very important when it comes to caring for a pet bird is making sure your winged buddy has a lot of perches. A local vet offers some advice on choosing perches in this article from Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO veterinary clinic, serving Louisville and surrounding areas.


Polly will need perches that are of different textures and hardnesses. Wild birds sit on a variety of different kinds of branches, some small, some large, some stiff, some soft. This gives their legs a great workout. That variety is also important for pets!


As far as choosing, we usually recommend perches that are made from real wood. Your winged friend’s cage may have come with a plastic or dowel perch, but that should only be a backup or spare, and should be replaced immediately. They can cause medical issues, such as bumblefoot. You’ll also want to avoid very hard perches. Ask your vet for recommendations.


Be sure to get perches that are the right size for your feathered buddy. Generally, you would want perches that are at least as long as your pet’s wingspan. Your bird’s claws should be able to go about ¾ of the way around the perch. Any larger, and Polly could hurt her feet. Any smaller, and she’ll have trouble staying on.


When arranging your winged pal’s perches, avoid putting them above her food and water dishes, as droppings would quickly contaminate them. You also want to make sure that your colorful little pet is able to open and flap her wings without touching the cage wall or ceiling.


You’ll also find lots of rope and swing accessories for Polly’s cage. Take care to replace these when they start getting frayed.


Don’t think of Polly’s perch arrangement as permanent. You’ll want to rotate perches in and out regularly, and move them around in your chirpy buddy’s cage. This will help keep her from getting bored with the same-old same-old setup. We recommend doing this once a week, while you are cleaning her cage. Do you have questions about bird care? Contact us here at Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet hospital, serving Louisville and surrounding areas.