[nagdu] Dogs and Pet Birds

Larry D Keeler lkeeler at comcast.net
Thu Jul 31 18:18:53 UTC 2014

Now for me that would be hard! Holly sure wants the bunnies! I think I could 
do it but it would be really difficult!
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Deanna Lewis via nagdu" <nagdu at nfbnet.org>
To: "Alysha" <alyshaj at comcast.net>; "NAGDU Mailing List, the 
NationalAssociation of Guide Dog Users" <nagdu at nfbnet.org>
Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2014 9:06 AM
Subject: Re: [nagdu] Dogs and Pet Birds

> Hi Alysha,
> I personally do not have pet birds, but I completely understand how this 
> is worrying you. About a year after getting my guide dog, I decided to get 
> a pet rabbit, I had rabbits in the past and our pet dogs were usually 
> pretty good with them. Pascal, liked to pester the rabbit, and the rabbit 
> was scared of him. I rehomed the rabbit in a few days, I didn't want the 
> bunny to be caged all the time due to Pascal trying to play with it. 
> Pascal has always been well behaved around my cats and other small 
> animals, it was just he liked to play rough with this particular bunny.
> One thing I would suggest that may help you, is during your training with 
> the new dog, try to visit pet stores during training. See if there will be 
> stores in the area where you can sit with birds and let them and your dog 
> explore each other. This way, if your dog seems really agitated or 
> aggressive around the bird, you can discuss options with your trainer.
> Hope this helps, best of luck!
> Deanna and Pascal
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nagdu [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Alysha via 
> nagdu
> Sent: Wednesday, July 30, 2014 5:34 PM
> To: NAGDU Mailing List, the National Association of Guide Dog Users
> Subject: [nagdu] Dogs and Pet Birds
> OK, so I have a question that may be a little unusual. After I'd had 
> Hammer for about 5 years, I decided to get a pet parrot. I knew that 
> Hammer is pretty much the most calm, gentle dog on Earth. He has never 
> been distracted by small animals of any kind and has no prey drive to 
> speak of. I took him with me to the breeder to regularly visit my baby 
> African grey before she came home, and the only interest he showed to 
> anything there was the occasional piece of bird food on the floor. A year 
> after I brought home Ellie, my grey, I adopted a second bird named Rocky 
> (a green cheek conure).
> The birds live in my living/dining room area where I spend the majority of 
> my time at home. They spend most of their time on their cages, their 
> hanging bird gyms, or on me, but they will occasionally fly to the couch 
> or other places in the room. Hammer has been perfect with the birds and 
> even knows he can safely ignore Ellie when she clicks her tongue and yells 
> "Hammer, come here!" Both birds are flighted (their wings are not clipped) 
> and they are allowed out-of-cage time pretty much whenever I am home.
> Now that my completely trustworthy boy is retiring at the end of this 
> year, I'll be bringing a new, unknown pup home. One of my biggest fears 
> about this is that the new dog will not be safe to have loose when the 
> birds are out. I wouldn't leave the dog and birds out together unattended, 
> but the worst could happen in a split second even if I was sitting right 
> there. And if they can't all manage to peacefully coexist, it will mean 
> that all of them will have lots of serious restrictions (less out-of-cage 
> time for the birds and more time on a leash, in a crate, or in another 
> room for the dog).
> My plan (as far as it goes) is to keep the new dog on leash pretty much 
> constantly for a couple of weeks as recommended by the school and see how 
> he reacts to the birds. I can offer praise and treats if he seems to 
> ignore it when a bird takes flight. The birds will be caged or in another 
> room when the dog and I are playing. Does anyone have any more 
> suggestions? Have any of you dealt with this before? It's scary because 
> birds are so fragile, much more so than cats, and can be seriously hurt or 
> killed by a dog, even if the dog is just playing! It's definitely 
> something I've already brought up with the school and will continue to 
> discuss with them, but I'd also love to hear any experiences or words of 
> wisdom you guys might be able to offer.
> Alysha
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