Parrots can accidentally escape within seconds, even in the most conscientious home. Your feathered friend may be playing contentedly on their parrot playgym when he/she is startled by a sound and disappears out the doggie door. You may accidentally leave the front door ajar when you step outside to get the mail or pick up a package…….even though you thought your parrot was playing with his bird toys several feet away, he suddenly escapes outside.
Losing your pet parrot can be devastating and extremely upsetting. It is every bird owner’s worst nightmare. If this does happen to you, spring into action immediately. Don’t waste time feeling guilty or imagining the worst. Put a plan together and start your search. Here are some tips to help you get started:
- Search your neighborhood. Most parrots will stay within a one mile radius from where they escaped for at least several weeks. Gather an army of caring friends and family to help you comb the area surrounding your house and yard.
- Conduct your search efforts before sunrise and at dusk. These are the hours when parrots are naturally more active. Take along some of your parrot’s favorite bird toys or treats to lure him out of hiding if you find him.
- Create a poster. The poster should contain a large, colorful picture of your parrot with a full description. Be sure to include your phone number or a way for people to get in touch with you if they find your bird. If you are offering a reward, place this in big bold letters on the poster. Additionally, it is best to state the specific reward you are offering. For example if you are willing to pay $100 or $500 for the safe return of your bird, be sure to say so. Being specific may motivate people to help.
- Call your local veterinarians. You should call every vet within a 25-50 mile radius of where you live. Ask if they have seen your parrot or received any phone calls about a lost bird. Oftentimes, if people find your bird, they will call a veterinarian to ask for advice on how to find the owners or care for the parrot.
- Call local animal shelters and humane societies. Ask them if they have received any parrots recently. Provide them with a full description and photo of your bird. It is best to call these places daily, as they receive new animals all the time. You may also want to stop by regularly to see if your bird has turned up.
- If you live in a private home you can leave your feathered friend’s bird cage outside and some familiar bird toys as well which may help entice them to fly down to their home.
- Never give up!! Most important of all, never give up in your search. With diligence and persistence, many parrots have been safely returned to their owners. Keep in mind that your parrot may come back to you as well. So keep an eye out—they may surprise you!!