Parrot won't come out of its cage

My Parrot Won’t Come Out Of Its Cage (6 Strategies That Work)

If you’ve had a parrot for any amount of time now, you know that they are always waiting for that door to open so they can get outside and play with you. They are social creatures who love spending time with people. 

But if suddenly for some reason, your parrot isn’t willing to come out, it can be quite concerning. 

Most commonly this happens when a parrot is scared due to a perceived threat. However, other reasons can be neglect from the owner, nesting inside the cage, or even illnesses. 

Also, if your parrot is new, this sort of behavior can be common as the bird is still adjusting to the environment.

Why Won’t Your Parrot Come Out Of Its Cage?

To understand why your parrot is not coming out of its cage, y. You’ll need to take your rabbit’s behavior and history into account so you can understand why your rabbit, specifically, is staying in their enclosure.

Scared Behavior

The most common reason that a parrot does not want to leave its cage is when it feels scared. Being prey animals, the outside world can sometimes seem scary to parrots. When they don’t feel like their surroundings are safe, they’ll resort to hiding in their enclosed space to avoid danger. 

If your parrot is new to its surroundings, this is actually pretty normal behavior. But if your long-time pet parrot has suddenly developed a fear of the outside, there must be something out there that it does not find welcoming. 

This can be due to potentially many different things in the environment. It could be a pet animal that scared it or an unknown sound coming from the other side of the wall.

Parrots can also be afraid of people. They might feel uneasy to come out when there are people in the room that they do not know. Your parrot can also be scared of you if it is not willing to step up or becomes extremely flighty when you’re around.

Traumatic Experience 

When you’re trying to figure out why your parrot might be scared, you should first ask yourself if something bad had happened recently that might be preventing your parrot from leaving its cage. 

If your parrot associates its last time out of the cage with a negative experience, it may not feel comfortable coming back out. Parrots have good memory and usually remember negative experiences for a long time. If you grabbed your parrot by hand that can make them scared of you. 

Scared parrot

Anti-Social Behavior

Parrots can also refuse to come out of their cages for behavioral reasons. According to Jean Pattison, parrots can become cage-bound if they are neglected and not given enough opportunity to socialize. 

Parrots have to stay in their cage all day which makes them prone to boredom and stress. They need to socialize regularly to keep themselves mentally stimulated. If you leave your parrot in its cage for too long, they may become anti-social. 

A parrot who has no one to play with will often end up becoming a loner. The parrot will lose interest in interacting with their owners and engaging with their surroundings. When a parrot grows out of a relationship with its owner, nothing will interest it anymore. The parrot will sit inside its cage even with the cage door open.

This is why interaction and out-of-cage time is so important for captive parrots. Every once in a while, parrots should be let out of their cages. Also, you should ensure that their cages are big enough and filled with toys so they can play all day. 

Nesting Behavior 

If you provide your parrot with cozy space in their cages with a dark enclosure, it can encourage them to nest. There are various types of sleeping huts that many people put in their parrot’s cage without realizing how bad that is. The closed space of that hut along with the shreddable material turns on hormonal mode in parrots.  

Parrots usually get hormonal during the springtime, but they can also be triggered out of season when they are provided with the ideal conditions. They have an innate desire to mate and reproduce, even if it means doing it by themselves. 

If your parrot seems to be nesting in its cage, it can become territorial and aggressive about its space. It may refuse to come out or interact with you. In case you have triggered your parrot to go into breeding mode, you need to discourage them. 

Otherwise, it can lead to sexual frustration and unhealthy behaviors. Single female parrots can even be triggered to lay eggs, which is not safe for them. Unwanted breeding can bring a host of problems that you may not be prepared to deal with. 

Illness Or Injury

On a normal day, you know your parrot would leap out of its cage the moment you open that door. But if your parrot does not give any reaction when you open the cage door, it could be a sign that something is amiss. 

If your parrot seems lethargic in its cage, it can be a symptom of a more serious underlying condition. Your parrot can simply be suffering from an illness or might have an injury. What makes it worse is that parrots tend to hide their illnesses from their owners. 

This means that your parrot’s condition could be worse than it looks. It can be especially clear if your parrot is dwelling at the bottom of the cage. Sick birds often have trouble perching normally so they prefer to go to the cage floor to rest. 

How To Get A Parrot Out Of The Cage 

Before getting into the strategies on how to get your parrot out of its cage, it’s important to understand that we need to make the parrot willing to come out. We do not just want to get them out of the cage, rather we should aim to create an environment where your parrot is likely to approach first. 

Install A Door Perch 

If you do not already have a door perch, you should consider getting one. A door perch is a perch attached to the door of the cage. It is simply meant to give your bird easy access to the way outside. 

Coming out of their cages can sometimes be intimidating to parrots and they may need someone or something to help nudge them outside. Usually, if the parrot is step-up trained, it should be able to come out with your help. 

But if your parrot is refusing to step up to come out, you can use the door perch as an alternative. With a door perch, the parrot does not need to make contact with anyone and it can feel secure in coming out independently. 

Offer Treats And Wait

Offering treats to lure your parrot is a very obvious technique. But you might be able to level that up by giving your parrot its favorite food.

Sometimes, a parrot may not be as easily enticed by a vegetable or a seed. In that case, you need to play your ace card. 

However, instead of luring the parrot to reach out and take the treat from your hand, you need to wait it out. 

Open your parrot’s cage and leave its favorite treat out. If your parrot goes back inside the cage after taking the treat, let them. The parrot is not fully trusting of its surroundings, so you cannot expect it to come out so easily. Also, we are not trying to bait the parrot. 

According to the Wasatch Avian Education Society, by providing parrots with many opportunities to choose to come out for treats, you help to grow their confidence. After every repetition, the parrot will be less fearful of exiting its space. 

The Mirror Method

Another way you can get your reluctant parrot to come out of its cage is by showing it a mirror reflection. Parrots do not understand mirrors. They think the image in the mirror is another parrot. And usually, they will want to socialize with this mirror parrot. 

If you cannot get your parrot out using treats, you can use this method, but be careful. You should only use this trick to get your parrot out. Do not continue to show the parrot the mirror as it can have a bad psychological impact on the parrot. 

Once you are able to get your parrot to come out, put the mirror away and distract them with a treat or a toy. Remember that making your parrot leave its cage is only half the battle won. The goal is to make your parrot less fearful of coming out. 

Target Training 

You can also use target training to get your bird out. If your parrot is already familiar with the concept of target training, that’s a great thing. But if it isn’t, don’t worry, you can still teach them through the cage. 

Start by letting your parrot touch the target stick and reward them for their good behavior. Once your parrot gets a hang of it, slowly target them towards the cage door. With the help of a target stick, you can help your parrot navigate towards the door and ask them for a step up politely.

Change The Outdoor Setting 

Reorganizing the outdoor environment or taking the cage somewhere else can work for parrots who are scared. If you aren’t able to pinpoint what item in your room is ticking off your parrot, it can be worth a try to take its cage to another room. 

Hopefully, your parrot should be familiar with the rest of your house and may feel more comfortable with a little change in environment. 

You should not take your parrot somewhere where it has never been though. The idea is to change the outdoor environment for the parrot since it does not like the previous one. You can even make changes in the current room. 

Even small changes can help your parrot feel comfortable. Remove the stuff that you had brought into the room recently as that is most likely what is making your parrot uneasy. 

Dorson Joseph
Dorson Joseph

I'm Dorson, a bird enthusiast who's had a lifelong fascination for the avian world. I am a parent to my beloved Senegal parrot and budgie, which has deepened my love for avian creatures and taught me a lot over the years. I co-run a bird store and care center with my friends, where we work with experienced professionals to care for our flock. Now, I find great joy in sharing my knowledge with others, hoping to assist fellow bird keepers and enthusiasts in understanding birds and helping them live happy lives.

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