Should You Get a Budgie?
Budgies are great pets. They are smart and funny, and they can become pretty attached to a human being. Some even learn to talk! But there is more to keeping a budgie than you would think at first glance. Is a budgie right for you? Read on to find out.
Budgies Are a Popular Pet
So you've decided you want a pet, and you're thinking of getting a bird. You've researched some bird species that are kept as pets, and have, for now, settled on a budgie. Budgies are very popular as pets and very easy for beginners. But there is still a lot that comes with being a responsible pet owner.
You know that; that's why you're here. You want to find out if you are the right person for that little creature to spend its life with. There's also more to it than simply feeding it the right stuff, providing toys and keeping its cage clean.
So, should you get a budgie? Here are some questions that, when answered, will help you decide.
Questions You Should Ask Yourself
- Will your personalities match?
- Why do you want a budgie?
- Are you willing to buy not just the one, but two budgies?
- Do you have the space and time for the budgie?
- Can you afford to keep it in good health?
- What will happen to the budgie(s) when you go on vacation?
- What if you tire of the bird?
- Do you have any other pets that might be hazardous to a little bird that's very curious?
- What if you decide that you want even more budgies?
1. Will your personalities match?
Budgies are very playful and curious, but they're also stubborn. This means that at times, they'll be acting like a 2-year-old: touching something they shouldn't, using their sharp beaks to destroy furniture, pooping on everything (they poop every 15 minutes and cannot be housetrained). Even the most well-tamed budgie will, when it decides it doesn't want to go to its cage, fly off and disobey you.
They go through puberty, like humans: testing your limits, being stubborn, even being aggressive towards you! Luckily, they won't hang out with bad budgies, dress up in all black and listen to loud metal music all day, but they can still get under your skin if you are not a patient person.
Budgies also scream loudly at least once a day for minutes on end. Some budgies scream several times a day, for half an hour at a time. You can find videos of the sound on YouTube. I suggest you listen to a screaming budgie before deciding you want one. It may bother you! If you have a small child that needs to sleep, don't get a budgie!
Budgies are intelligent and will figure out your routines, your tricks for getting them back in the cage (or for getting them to do anything, really), and so on. They will figure it out. One of my own budgies even figured out that a particular look on my face meant that I would be locking up the cage again, at which point, no matter what he was doing, he would immediately go sit in the opening and simply continue to do what he was up to, ready to fly out.
Of course, all this sounds like budgies are horrid to keep as pets. Please don't think that is the case, though. They are also very sweet, and they can become very attached to their caretaker. So, make sure that you would be willing to spend time with the budgie. It's not meant to sit in a cage by itself all day.
2. Why do you want a budgie?
Be honest here. Is it curiosity? Is it to put it on display, or will it serve as a living TV screen? A budgie is a living being, and it needs to be taken care of. If you're likely to buy one and then bring it to the pound in a month's time, save yourself the trouble and the money.
However, if it is because you are enamored by budgies, love how they look, love how funny and adventurous they can be and want to tame them and make them into your best friend, then you are the perfect person to own a budgie, and the budgie will be happy to be adopted by you!
Did You Know?
- Budgies originate from Australia.
- The first budgies to be taken out of Australia were taken to England in 1840.
- Originally, prices for budgies were very high, sometimes up to 100 times the average wage of the time.
- The parakeet family is the largest group of the parrotlets.
3. Are you willing to buy not just the one, but two budgies?
Budgies are social creatures. They cannot live alone. The best thing for any budgie owner would be to get another budgie, bringing the total to at least two budgies. It's not just more fun for you as an owner to watch the two interact. The budgie will most likely be more active, be happier, be more fit and live longer! Read How To Introduce A Second Budgie for more information..
4. Do you have the space and time for the budgie?
A budgie needs a nice and spacious cage with good quality perches, a variety of toys and a vast variety of food. It needs to be able to spread its wings now and then to stay fit. So, do you have the space for a cage that's big enough?
A budgie also needs you there. It won't be happy spending all day sitting on a perch, staring at the wall, being all alone. You wouldn't be happy either. The budgie needs you to spend lots of time with it if it's alone. If you get a second budgie, you won't need to spend as much time interacting with them, but you still need to keep the cage clean, change the water and the food bowls every day and keep a good eye on their health.
5. Can you afford to keep it in good health?
Buying a budgie, a cage, some toys and food is one thing. But what if the bird gets sick? A trip to the vet will cost money, and you really owe it to the bird to pay for its treatment when it needs it. So add approximately $200 to your budget before deciding on getting a budgie. Keep that money stored away safely somewhere and don't touch it. Keep it exclusively for vet costs.
6. What will happen to the budgie(s) when you go on vacation?
A budgie will die if it's left for 48 hours without food. Taking it with you would cause the bird a lot of stress, and the hotel probably wouldn't allow it. So is there someone you can trust to take care of it? Make sure they will take care of the bird! I once asked someone to take care of my birds, and it's a good thing I returned early: He forgot.
7. What if you tire of the bird?
Will you still keep it and take good care of it? Or do you know someone who is good with pets and who would be able to love your budgie? The pounds are overcrowded, so think twice before risking adding to the population.
8. Do you have any other pets that might be hazardous to a little bird that's very curious?
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Dogs, cats, snakes . . . We can all think of many household pets that could hurt or even kill a small budgie.
9. What if you decide that you want even more budgies?
Budgies are addictive! Many owners end up buying more budgies, and several even decide to give breeding a try. Will you be able to say no if you don't have the room or time for it?
Did You Answer Everything?
Did you answer all these questions or think up solutions for any possible problems that may spring up? You really want to get a budgie or two? Then the next step is prepping your home to welcome a new family member! You'll be adding love, life and laughter to your house! Look forward to an article by me on that very topic.
How many budgies do you have or want?
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.