The cockatiel is a well-known bird in Brazil, and it is not difficult to find some specimens of this animal so smart in trees scattered on the streets of the whole country - especially in cities in the interior, where the air is purer and nature more abundant.
Nowadays, however, cockatiel they can be found in many more places besides the streets, and more and more animal lovers choose this type of bird to have at home as a pet; since both the level of intelligence and the amusing personality of this animal are extremely captivating.
Bearing in mind that pet lovers are increasingly in love with cockatiel, an important question comes to mind: is it possible to have a bird like this at home if a dog already inhabits this home?
The answer to that question is positive, since, although many believe that the relationship between animals of different species it can be a bit complicated, this is not true when the socialization between the animals is done in the proper way. Proof of this is the large number of homes that have dogs and cats as pets - considered "enemies" by nature and that, however, can live in perfect harmony.
In the case of birds, the possibility of friendship with dogs is also real; however, it is important that the animals are well adapted to each other (preferably from puppies) before they can be left alone without problems - since, in some cases, a bird can become a good snack for more agitated dogs or aggressive.
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Find out more about the main characteristics of the cockatiel, and see some tips on how to facilitate the interaction between dogs and birds, in case you want to bring the two animals together in your home.
Measuring between 30 and 32 centimeters in adulthood, the cockatiel is a bird that weighs around 120 grams and can live up to 25 years of age if taken care of correctly - although its life expectancy is around 15 years. Originally from Australia, this bird is a nomad, and usually accompanies the rain cycle on its flights, traveling in flocks in search of food.
Best known in North America and Europe since the 19th century, the cockatiel was originally baptized with the name "cockatoo-parrot", changing its name as its popularity grew in the most different countries of the world. From the 50's, the bird went through several mutations, which generated an infinity of subtypes, the following being the primary and best known: Harlequin, Lutino, Cinnamon, Pearl, Silver and White Face.
Currently, the Brazilian animal legislation already considers the domestic animal (according to decree number 93 of Ibama), a fact that encourages even more the acquisition of the bird by animal lovers in the country. It can be extremely docile and attached to its owners - and, even able to recognize them from afar - the cockatiel can also be very aggressive and; just as in the case of dogs, the younger the bird, the easier it will be to condition it to be tame by means of dressage techniques.
Sexual maturity occurs around 12 months of age and, from then on, the bird can reproduce throughout the year, generating 3 to 7 eggs at a time during incubation periods that vary between 18 and 23 days. The breeding season of these birds modify behavior both males and females, who become extremely aggressive - so, in most cases, it is recommended that they stay separate; since males can fight ugly with each other and females can attack other animals as well as people who dare to approach.
Fans of plenty of space to circulate and have their own environment, cockatiels don't like to be trapped in cages; however, this is a good idea if there is a dog in the same home where the animal lives, as there may be strangeness at first. With other cockatiels, in general, the coexistence is quiet, but placing them together with species such as parakeets, among others, can result in accidents and a lot of confusion, and it is a situation that must be monitored.
If your desire is to create the two species together, doing a coexistence test in the first days can be a good way to know if the animals will really be able to live without fighting. For this, the birds must be placed together for a few hours, while their behavior is analyzed - increasing their coexistence time gradually and continuously.
Main types of cockatiel
As previously mentioned, the passing of the years caused a series of cockatiel mutations to be generated, presenting us with birds of the most different aspects and colors. Check out, below, a brief description of the six main and most well-known types of cockatiel:
- Harlequin Its plume is mixed, and appears to be stained. Colors can vary between combinations of white and yellow or white and gray. In addition to the body, there may be spots of different colors closer to the animal's face and in its famous “tuft”. Within the Harlequin type of cockatiel, there are also the following variations: Pearl-Harlequin, Cinnamon-Harlequin, Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin, Lutino-Pearl-Harlequin, White Face-Harlequin, White Face-Pearl-Harlequin, White Face- Cinnamon-Harlequin and White Face-Pearl-Cinnamon-Harlequin.
- Lutino The Lutino cockatiel can be completely white or slightly yellow, and has a pink beak and paws, and its eyes are almost red. Some have a small feather gap under the forelock, and their main subtypes are: Lutino-Canela, Lutino-Pérola, Lutino-Pérola-Harlequin and CaraBranca-Lutino.
- Lower leg The name is given in terms of the feathers of the bird's body, in cinnamon or brownish tones. The beak and paws are light gray in color, and the feathers can vary in shade. Its main subtypes are: Cinnamon-Harlequin, Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin, Lutino-Cinnamon, White Face-Cinnamon, White Face-Cinnamon-Harlequin and White Face-Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin.
- Pearl The pearl-type cockatiel has its entire body covered with spots similar to small spots, which can be yellow or white in color. Other color variations occur in their different subtypes: Pearl-Harlequin, Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin, Lutino-Pearl, Lutino-Pearl-Harlequin, White-Pearl Face, White-Pearl-Harlequin Face and White-Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin .
- Silver A very rare mutation of the cockatiel, the Silver type has gray feathers, and the shade varies between light and very dark. In the Dominant Silver subtype the bird is all light gray and has black eyes; while in the Recessive Silver subtype the bird has red eyes and a pink beak and feet.
- White Face It does not have yellow pigmentation or orange cheeks in the face area. The coat color varies, most of the time, between white and gray, being its subtypes: White Face-Lutino (known as albino), White Face-Harlequin, White Face-Pearl, White Face-Pearl-Harlequin, White Face -Cinnamon, White Face-Cinnamon-Harlequin, White Face-Cinnamon-Pearl-Harlequin.
Dogs and cockatiels
Now that we have explained a little about the behavior and appearance of cockatiels, we can talk more about the interaction of this bird with the dogs. As with any relationship between animals of different species, raising them together from youngsters remains the best and easiest option to make a true friendship possible; avoiding fights between the animals or, in this case, preventing your dog from making the cockatiel a snack.
Although the process of approximation and coexistence between these animals is simpler in the case described above, this does not mean that a cockatiel and a dog adults cannot interact in a friendly way - however, in this type of situation, good coexistence will depend on the level of aggression and jealousy of the animals (and this is true for both the dog and the bird).
In houses that already have dogs and add a cockatiel to the family, leaving the bird inside the cage while the dogs are around is a good idea at the beginning of this relationship - and, even if the bird does not like to be trapped, it is better that it remains collected for some time from what is eaten by the dog, right? However, who owns very docile dogs does not have much to worry about, since if they do not usually attack other animals or people, there is a great possibility that they will get along with the bird right away.
As stated earlier, making coexistence experiences it is always a good option to start the process of adaptation and recognition among animals, and can encourage a long and lasting friendship like the one in the video below, which is successful on the internet for showing the classic animation scene “A Dama eo Vagabundo” reproduced by a dog and a cockatiel.
- Dog Behavior
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