Trimming Parrots Nails! I know i'm in the chick zone... :D

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by tiffanyg2, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. tiffanyg2

    tiffanyg2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hey I'm reposting this here because there isn't alot of activity in the caged bird section and I know I see alot of chicken owners with parrots! I need some advice on how to clip my Moluccan Cockatoo's nails~ My nail clippers totally make him nervous. He is very friendly and lets me handle him, flip him over, pet him everywhere but I haven't quite figured out a method to trim his nails. I will not take him to a vet because last year a licensed avian vet trimmed his wings completely wrong and nearly killed him!! He was seriously injured because he had no flight at all and just fell smack dab on the floor injured his tail and everything... I'd have to say It was one of the most horrifying experiences in my life. It tramatized him and he was still a young baby, I was scared he may start feather plucking as these kinds of parrots are very prone to it. I spent weeks working with him and cuddling him offering reassurance and he gradually got better. Now he has all his flight feathers coming back in finally... and his tail feathers are starting to grow back out as well. He trusts me so I want to be the one who trims his nails and feathers(if needed) from now on. Can you offer any advice and techniques for me, also what kind of nails trimmers work best for a Large Parrot? Thanks for any info my chicken loving friends!!

    Here's some pics of my baby!

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  2. Anianna

    Anianna Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What kind of nail clippers are you using that make him nervous? Have you tried using different types of trimmers to see if others make him more comfy? I've seen several people use human nail clippers for chickens and I bet the scissor-like trimmers designed for cats would work. You may even be able to just file them with an emory board, but that will take longer and may be more stressful.

    Can you distract him or give him treats during clipping? This may be easier with a helper. Have you tried a hood? We have one very skittish female rabbit and, when we trim her nails, I hold her with a hand over her eyes while my husband clips. This helps to keep her calm. A hood may calm your bird in much the same way.
     
  3. tiffanyg2

    tiffanyg2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well the nail trimmers have a circlular hole in the middle and when you squeeze the handle the piece that actually cuts the nail slides up and cuts the nail. I use these on my dogs and it works rather well and because my parrot is so large he really has nails similiar to the dogs. I know it takes some getting used to but I don't know how these clippers feel so I am thinking about trying a different pair... I looked online and found one with a great review called Safari Professional Nail Trimmer~ I just don't want to make him scared of me doing it either. He trusts me so I just want to do it as careful as possible. I would think the hoodie might make him more scared as he is not used to being covered like that. I might be wrong and it could be worth a try! The treat thing would probably help. He loves cream cheese so I could reward him with that. I know he definately needs them trimmed and hopefully after they are I can try to get him comfortable with me filing them weekly with a emory board. I agree it would be easier with a helper but it's just me and my kids here (and they are not suitable for this task) So I just have to work with him. I did try to cut the bunny's nails the other night two I got the front done but not the back~ He started to get fidgety so I stopped I guess I will get them this weekend! Thanks for your response [​IMG]
     
  4. luvinrunnin

    luvinrunnin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They make a nail cutter that is like a pair of scissors, but the end is sorta circular and ends up having the same effect as the dog trimmers you already have. They are made for dogs. I'd try those as the handles are like a pair of bandage scissors, and the whole thing just looks smaller which may help alleviate the nervousness a bit.

    If you are careful, a dremel is the best tool for nails. Just have to get him accommodated to the sound and feel of them, but might be a better option if the feel of the other type of trimmers makes the bird uncomfortable. However, my CAG growled like crazy when i had the vet do his beak with a dremel!!! I felt terrible for him, but it was hilarious at the same time LOL.
     
  5. Anianna

    Anianna Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you have an animal that isn't freaked by the sound, the Dremel is good for nails. That PediPaws gizmo is just a Dremel with a cover.

    I don't like the guillotine style cutters because I have had them split nails before. I prefer the scissor style ones and find it faster to position on the nail and do a quick snip.

    Also, I can't really judge without observation, but it kind of sounds like you may feel a little nervous about clipping especially without help. The animal will sense that and be nervous, too. I find that if you coo and try to calm the animal because you think it will get nervous, it becomes nervous. I don't try to comfort my animals anymore. I just approach and trim. Most of them aren't bothered at all, but when I used to try to comfort them, they would get nervous, like it gave them some idea something was going on. Now, the only of our animals that get bent out of shape by trimming are the skittish ones who get bent out of shape over everything.
     
  6. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    Get yourself a couple (or dozen) packs of inexpensive nail files.


    Start by filing your nails in front of the bird and use a phrase like "making my self pretty" "beautiful nails" and such to interest your bird. Give the bird his own file to check out. Do this a couple times, so it is no longer a big deal when the bird watches you.


    Then file your nails and one of the bird's nails - just a gentle swipe across the nail and make a HUGE, HUGE fuss. "WHAT a pretty bird with lovely nails" "Just look at that lovely smooth nail" - serious really carry on, you know how 'toos love this kind of stuff.


    Then just work at each nail a bit each day. A swipe on the nail, dance around the room.




    May I suggest...........if you are in a position where the bird is safe.........to just let the flight feathers grow and let your bird learn how to fly. We have a flighted goffins and a pair of flighted greys. It is really the best for the bird, physically and mentally. It does not take long, and you can teach the bird to fly to YOU and land on your shoulder.
     
  7. tiffanyg2

    tiffanyg2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:You know what I do have a pedipaw! I never thought about that~ maybe I will get that out and see how he reacts to the sound of it. And yeah I have to do it If somebody just takes him and restrains him how vets typically do he wouldn't totally scream, holler, and growl~ which is what he did when they saw him last year~ I was crying by the time I left there. Poor guy~ I don't ever want that to happen to him again. [​IMG]
     
  8. tiffanyg2

    tiffanyg2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I'm slighty nervous... only because I don't want to hurt him! But I know what your saying animals are very perseptive to how we feel and in return they tend to feel anxious when we do. I would like to be quick and effecient but because it is my first time doing his nails I'm also trying to be cautious. I do have that Pedipaws which I totally forgot about. So I will get that out and see how it works. And I know what your saying about those cutters I'm thinking it puts to much pressure on the nail as it is trimming. So I will pick up a scissor style cutter that has a quick snip end on it. Thanks for your tips [​IMG]
     
  9. tiffanyg2

    tiffanyg2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:It's funny you say that... I googled trimming parrot nails on you tube and I watched this video of this lady with the bird on her leg and she was filing her nails and then the parrot stuck his foot out like he was next!!!! I thought how cool is that~ if I could teach Gabriel that! She did hers and then did his and she kept taking turns that way. I am definately going to try that method to. But I do need to trim them with a cutter first because they are getting to long. Then as maintenance I can file our nails together [​IMG] And I will talk and give him all the praise to go with it. He is finally starting to sound out hello~ and I taught him the monkey call~ which I'm not sure if that was a good idea or not [​IMG] My neighbors thought I had a monkey [​IMG] But he is just 16 months old. So he is still a baby in parrot years!

    And as far as your suggestion~ YES I am letting his wings grow completely out so he can learn to fly properly and teach him to come to me... granted the thought of this BIG boy flying through the house might be crazy, and might break a few things here and there, but he needs to be able to fly! I was so upset after what happened to his wings at the vets office~ he couldn't fly at all. All I wanted to do was reduce the amount of his flight because I didn't not want to chance him flying away from me! So yes his wings will be grown out completely~ Let me ask you something, one thing I will miss as well as he... when he does gain full flight back he won't be able to go outside with me anymore unless there is a way I can somehow restrict him to a certain area? My dad mentioned how they have those little foot leashes like they use at bird sanctuaries for shows. I'm not sure about if there is such a thing or if its safe. Again I am learning with him~ he's my buddy for life~ so when he's happy I'm happy! How long did it teach you to train your birds to fly to you and did you do it indoors?
     
  10. luvinrunnin

    luvinrunnin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My CAG would call the kids, answer them when they called for me, etc. He even had a whole phone conversation including the phone beeps and sounds LOL. My friend has him now and she said when she got him it was like having me living with her. He "blows his nose" just like me hehehe. Picked that up as soon as I got him. Parrots are so cool!
     

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