Are you thinking of adding a feathered friend to your family? You should, and for good reason. Birds are relatively inexpensive and low-maintenance, great for small spaces, and are very social and loving. With the numerous species to choose from, you might not know which one to pick and what supplies they’ll need. Never fear, you’re in good company. Sit back, relax and welcome to Birds 101!
If you’re a first-time bird owner, you’ll want to start with a species that’s easy to care for. You may be intrigued by the large and lushly-colored tropical parrots, but those breeds can be a bit much for a novice bird owner. The following birds are great for first-time bird owners because they’re easy to tame and care for:
Parakeets are attractive and lively pets who feed on social interaction. Because of this, it’s recommended to purchase parakeets in pairs if you’re not able to devote plenty of time to them each day.
Green Cheek Conures are great starter birds because they are affectionate and easy to train. They do require a great deal of attention, so steer clear if you’re not able to devote plenty of time.
Cockatiels are arguably the most popular species of pet birds. They make excellent bird companions in that they are well-socialized, gentle and friendly. Because they’re very social, cockatiels tend to be vocal, so keep that in mind if you live in an apartment.
Canaries would be the perfect bird for those who want to admire, but not touch. They don’t like being handled. That said, they are beautiful to watch and provide wonderful music.
Doves are known for being calm and quiet and would make the perfect pet for someone looking for a low-vocalized bird. If you opt to handfeed, doves can make very affectionate pets.
Want more options? Click here for a complete list of birds available at Petsway.
Now that you’ve chosen the right bird, let’s talk about supplies. Choose the largest cage your budget allows: your bird will spend most of its time in its cage, so you’ll want them to have as much space as possible to stretch and fly around. Add a couple of natural wood perches on either side of the cage’s interior, away from food and water bowls to avoid chewing. Perches should be wide enough that their toes do not overlap. Add a swing and a ladder. Birds love to swing and climb.
Speaking of food and water bowls, your bird will need fresh clean water at all times. Your bird will make a mess in the water dish so plan and cleaning and replacing the water at least twice a day. For food a high quality pellet food will be the basis of most bird diets. Along with the pellets you will want to add a mix of fruit, vegetables, seeds, nuts and occasional bird treats to your bird’s diet. You’ll also want to place a cage liner at the bottom to catch droppings—newspaper or paper towels work just fine, but whatever you choose, make sure to change it often to keep the cage hygienic.
Make sure your bird has plenty of toys in their cage. Toys aid the physical and mental wellbeing of birds by providing a variety of engaging activities like chewing, foraging, climbing and preening.
Birds need bird baths. Choose one that is big enough to fit in comfortably, but not so big that it can’t get out because most birds can’t swim.
The most important thing to remember is to treat your pet bird like a member of your family. Show them love and affection and we promise you’ll be rewarded with a loving and devoted feathered companion!
If you have any questions about birds, visit or contact one of our convenient locations and we’ll lend you a hand (or feather)!