Bathing a Quaker parrot is an essential role of a Quaker owner. It helps in softening the dirt on his feathers and skin and make his body germ-free. Accumulation of dust, dirt, and dander on Quaker parrot’s skin might not show up any immediate health problems but are detrimental for him in the long run. Also, in today’s world, many pollutants stick to the bird’s body leading to the ingestion of toxic substances into the skin during the process of preening. Bathing a Quaker parrot, therefore, becomes all the more important.
Some Quakers love bathing while others simply dodge it. On facing the latter issues, one shall not go against the will of the bird. Finding alternative ways of cleaning the pet bird is recommended in such cases. However, inculcating a habit of cleanliness from the very beginning will be of great help. It removes the fear of water from the Quaker parrot’s mind. Make bathing a fun session and your Quaker will never miss a bath.
Do Quaker parrots need baths?
Before discussing the ways of bathing a Quaker parrot, it is essential to address an extremely important question – Do Quaker parrots need baths?
A simple answer to this question is ‘YES’. Let us discuss the reasons of this necessity in detail –
Keeps Quaker clean
The cleaning requirements of Quaker parrots in the wild are naturally fulfilled by nature with rains and natural water bodies. In homes, Quaker owners need to keep their pet birds clean to prevent them from illness.
Keeps dander down
Regular bathing washes away the dander from Quaker’s feathers. Dander can severely hamper the air quality of one’s home, so regular Quaker baths help in keeping the environmental contamination levels low.
Bathing softens the dirt and dust accumulated on the feathers and skin of Quaker parrot. He can preen himself better due to the softness achieved. Also, it prevents the ingestion of toxins from their bodies.
Itchy and dry skin in Quakers leads to plucking in birds which are a serious problem. Regular bathing provides natural moisture to their skin and removes the itch-causing bacteria from their feathers.
Frequency of Quaker Baths
There is no thumb rule of bathing a Quaker parrot. In the wild, the species get a bath frequently during the rainy season while they might choose not to bath for a week or a month or even longer if there is no rainfall. Natural water bodies are their resource and it is completely their choice to take a dip.
In the case of captivated Quaker parrots, the owners are skeptical of giving a daily bath to their birds for maintaining good hygiene. However, it is not recommended to bath the bird daily. Frequent bathing can lead to overly dry skin resulting in itching.
A bath after every two weeks is considered sufficient for the species. It removes all the accumulated dirt and dust and also washes away the dander from his skin. If the quality of the air in your home is moist, you can consider giving more baths. Also, a Quaker bath is essential after an outdoor trip to remove germs from the bird’s body.
Many methods can be used for Quaker parrot bird bath sessions. These can be used as per the convenience of the Quaker owner.
Spray bottle method
In this method, a spray bottle is filled with lukewarm water and a couple of sprays are given to the bird. It is the quickest bathing method that doesn’t even require the opening of the cage. Ensure to check the water temperature before spraying it over Quaker. Hot water causes scalding and cold one can make the bird sick.
Bathing in sink
Many Quaker parrots enjoy taking a dip in the water. Quaker owners tend to fill a sink for their birds to let them enjoy the bathing session. The bird can be placed next to the filled sink and can be encouraged to take a bath by splashing on him gently some water from the sink. Ensure to keep the water temperature either lukewarm or at room temperature.
Adding fun in bathing a Quaker parrot makes the process much easier. Many times, a reluctant bather jumps into the water on seeing his owner taking a shower. Quaker parrots are curious beings and might just try out bathing out of curiosity.
Commercially available suction cup shower perches can be used for the safety of the bird. Also, installing shower filters remove impurities from the tap water. Such impurities found in the form of chlorine and fluorides are drying to the skin and also cause respiratory problems in both birds and humans.
Wet towel method
In this method, a towel is dipped in lukewarm water and excess water is squeezed out from it. It is then gently rubbed over the wings and the whole body of the Quaker parrot to clean away the accumulated dirt. Using lukewarm water soothes out the bird’s skin and ensure to wash away the germs properly. Ensure to remain soft in your touch as the little bird possess a delicate structure.
Bathing dish method
This is the most common method followed by Quaker owners. A bathing dish is placed inside the Quaker parrot’s cage to let him take a bath whenever he desires. If the bird is reluctant to enter into the water, he is encouraged by placing a few beads or leaves inside the dish. The dish is filled with an inch or two with water. With time, when the bird becomes comfortable with this method, water in the dish is increased.
Some Quaker owners prefer to purchase a commercial bathing dish that is attached to the side of the cage. The bird hops into the water-filled dish as and when he wants to. It is recommended to change the bathing water regularly to maintain the Quaker parrot’s hygiene. Also, it is important to make some provision to collect the splashes of water to prevent all the mess. A newspaper solves the purpose inside the cage and a mat is efficient in collecting the water that splashes on the floor.
Do Quaker parrots like baths?
Water is the basis of all life and no life can survive without it. Same holds for birds. Quakers in the wild are not averse to water. Bathing in the wild is like a social gathering for them which they all look forward to. You must have seen a flock of birds dipping themselves in puddles of water and having fun together. So, if a Quaker in captivity dislikes water, it is abnormal.
Bathing comes as naturally to a Quaker as preening. How could he be afraid of water? Does he not drink it? So, if he’s comfortable with drinking water but not getting dipped in it, there is surely something wrong. And the reason might be unpleasant past experiences. Since you won’t know them, you need to take care of bathing styles which are the most infamous ones with many Quaker pets.
Spray bottles: More often than not, spray bottles are the biggest culprit. Those drops of water hit many Quakers not only physically. They see it as a punishment. To some, their previous owners have used those spray bottles to squirt water on them when needed to punish these birds. And to others, The direct water drops hitting them, without their permission, feels like a coercive act. But that doesn’t mean that a spray bottle bath is a complete no-no. It has proved to be a success with many Quaker owners. All one needs is to stay gentle with the process and not be forceful on the bird.
If a spray bottle is Quaker owners’ method of bath for the Quaker, he must avoid a direct splattering of water onto him. An upward spray in the air giving it an effect of the rain can make that little difference. Let the bird walk in and out of the rain shower and decide himself if he wants water all over him. Give the Quaker his space which will eventually make him comfortable with the bathing session and the method.
Bathing Bowl: This one’s the most common way of bathing a Quaker but remember not to force dunk your Quaker into the bathing dish. This will make him feel unsafe around you. Many Quaker owners have been known to force their Quaker into the dish and put water all over them without sensing their birds’ priority. If the Quaker feels reluctant to jump into the dish, he should be left alone. Making him bath forcefully would not only scare the bird away from the whole bathing process but also from his owner.
Whatever method one chooses, the choice of Quaker should be kept in mind. If he’s not ready for it, don’t go ahead. Simply find what clicks with the bird than doing your own thing.
Before anything is done, it needs a rationale thinking backing it. The same holds for bathing. And bathing Quaker is no exception. Just as humans need bathing for various reasons apart from maintaining cleanliness. Quakers also need a good bath for more such reasons.