Is It Ok To Take Your Cockatiel Outside?

Cockatiels enjoy spending time in the sun and watching how the world goes. However, there are dangers to consider when taking your cockatiel outside. For example, cockatiels can fly away from you at any moment and never return. But is it ok to take your cockatiel outside?

Is It Ok To Take Your Cockatiel Outside? Yes, it’s totally ok to take your cockatiel outside on a harness, occasionally place its cage outside, or you can put it in an aviary. Even if your cockatiel’s wings have been clipped, your cockatiel can still fly away, especially if there is a strong wind.

It just needs a sudden noise for your cockatiel to become afraid and fly away. Your cockatiel may also be curious and fly off to investigate some sudden activity. It’s unwise to think that your cockatiel loves you and that it won’t just take off.

Can Cockatiels Go Outside?

Cockatiels can go outside but should not be given total freedom. Even if you already clip your cockatiel’s wings, it may take to the air and be carried off.

However, even if your cockatiel lacks the coordination to fly correctly, it can still get lost. Worse yet, it may fall in a risky location from which it will be impossible to escape. Many cockatiels go missing every year because they make a break for freedom when they are outside with their owners. Even if your cockatiel is not intent on abandoning you, it may take to the air and never return.

With that said, cockatiels live in the wild and will always enjoy the outdoors. As long as you provide a safe environment for your cockatiel and don’t give it a chance to fly away, it will enjoy in:

  • Traveling around the neighborhood on your shoulder.
  • Sitting in the sunOpens in a new tab..
  • Flying from one place to another on a harness.

Related read: Can Cockatiels Wear A Harness?Opens in a new tab.

Can You Let Your Cockatiel Fly Outside?

Some owners allow their cockatiels to come in and out of the home as they, please.

You may hear them say that their cockatiels always return. However, a cockatiel that manages to return a few times is not guaranteed to return every time. Unfortunately, cockatiels can:

1. Get lost

Cockatiels don’t have a homing ability that allows them to know where home is. That is because the cockatiel is involved in relying on its flock.

Wild cockatiels seldom spend time by themselves. Instead, they do everything as a group, so there’s no need to develop instincts that tell them where they’re supposed to be. After all, cockatiels never leave home.

If your cockatiel flies off, it may intend on coming home. Once it gets far enough away, the cockatiel may stop recognizing the area around it. It will be unable to tell which way home is and keep flying, bringing even more loss.

2. Injured

Cockatiels that fly outside run the risk of getting lost and never returning.

Domestic cockatiels almost always die when they find themselves outdoors. Pet cockatiels are not equipped with the necessary survival tools to live out of their owner’s home.

Likewise, pet cockatiels get tired more quickly than wild cockatiels. As a result, some run out of energy after flying around for a while and become vulnerable to predators.

Domestic cockatiels depend on their owners for sustenance. Unfortunately, cockatiels cannot identify which foods are good for them and which are notOpens in a new tab., so their instinct may tell them not to eat at all.

There is always a chance that the cockatiel gets a disease from interacting with things outside, be it other birds or garbage.

3. Captured

If other people find your cockatiel in their threes, yard, or balcony, they may capture it.

Even if this is done out of goodwill, the cockatiel still won’t be able to fly back to you. So if you cannot be located by the person or the finder decides to keep the cockatiel, you will have lost your pet forever.

Aside from that, the finder may donate your cockatiel to a rescue organization. Cockatiel rescues are growing because many people are giving up their cockatiels.

It’s natural for someone to assume that a lost cockatiel may have been set free intentionally.

Will A Bonded Cockatiel Fly Away?

A cockatiel’s life revolves around its flock. If it considers you a part of its family, it won’t like being separated from you for too long. However, just because the cockatiel loves you doesn’t mean it won’t fly away while outside.

Cockatiels are anxious and can get scared quickly. Even well-trained cockatiel will fly away when spooked. So, use a cage or a harness when you are outside with your cockatiel.

Also, if your cockatiel notices an exciting color, smell, or sound, it may go off to investigate. No matter how well you are bonded with your cockatiel, a good distraction can prevent it from noticing your calls until it is too far away to return.

Why Your Cockatiel Doesn’t Like Being Outside?

While most cockatiels enjoy the exercise and sunlight, others may find the experience overwhelming. All the external stimuli can trigger anxious behavior when cockatiels are taken outside of the house. This is most common in cockatiels that have always lived indoors

This includes cockatiels that were:

  • Not kept near doors or windows that gave them a view outside.
  • Born to domestic parents and had no exposure to the wild.
  • Only transported from a breeder to your home and nowhere else.

An aversion to the outdoors can happen in cockatiels that have trauma. Since their hyper-awareness of danger is so strong, cockatiels can be startled by new sounds or sights.

How To Safely Take Your Cockatiel Outside

Here are a few ways you can safely take your cockatiel outside:

1. Use a harness

A harness can be fastened securely around your cockatiel’s body to its chest, legs, and under its wings.

The leash will extend out from the cockatiel’s back so its wings are not inhibited. The tether can be held in your hand or wrapped around your wrist.

If your cockatiel is startled or curious and attempts to fly off, you can prevent it from getting out of reach. In addition, you can acquire a longer leash for the cockatiel to fly many feet at a time if you want it to have more freedom.

If you are considering getting a harness and leash for your cockatiel check this one on AmazonOpens in a new tab..

2. Take it outside in a cage

You can always place your cockatiel’s cage outside in the sunlight. It can absorb vitamin D, breathe fresh air, and listen to new sounds. However, a cockatiel will also be safe since it:

  • It cannot be surprised by predators, such as hawks or cats.
  • In addition, a cockatiel will be unable to fly away.
  • It will feel safer in its familiar environment.

It would help if you never leave the cage in direct sunlight. In addition, a shaded area should be provided on one side of the cage to avoid overheatingOpens in a new tab.. If you want to take the cockatiel for walks, you can get a portable cage with a handle.

Also, if you want to introduce your cockatiel to the great outdoors, place its cage outside. Do the following:

  • Never place the cage far away from your home. Instead, take your cockatiel to the backyard or the front steps. In that way, if it gets agitated, you can step back inside quickly.
  • Always use a small towel to cover the three sides of the cage. This will enable your cockatiel to see too much at once. The less it can see, the less likely it will become overstimulated.
  • Try to keep this session to 10 minutes apiece. Then, if your cockatiel wants to spend more or less time outside, it will let you know through vocalization and body language.
  • Do this daily and be consistent. Cockatiels thrive on routine and will become comfortable going outside faster if you make it a part of their daily lives.

As your cockatiel grows more comfortable in its cage, take it for a walk around the block. Keep the cage secured and only open the door when you’re sure it is safe inside.

3. Aviary

You can build an aviary if you want your cockatiel to fly free without getting lost.

This will be a big enclosure made with four walls and a roof. It can be encased in chicken wire to allow fresh air to flow freely. Include a two-door entryway for safety reasons.

The cockatiel can not fly out while you are getting inside. However, you can get an enclosure online and assemble the parts. Alternatively, you can build one from scratch.

This will allow your cockatiel to fly around as it would in nature, without the added dangers.

See Also: 6 Best Harnesses For Cockatiels in 2023Opens in a new tab.

How to Harness Train Your Cockatiel

Once your cockatiel is more comfortable, you can begin harness training. Keep in mind that most cockatiels hate wearing harnesses, so it can be challenging to train them to wear one.

Because of this, many owners get frustrated and strong-arm their cockatiels into the gear. Unfortunately, this can cause them to hate the process and become aggressive.

However, if you do it slowly and patiently, your cockatiel will tolerate the harness. Here is how:

  • Choose a training area your cockatiel will be comfortable in.
  • Then, gradually present the harness to your cockatiel while it is in your hand.
  • If your cockatiel becomes curious and tries to touch or get close to it, reward it with a snack.
  • Try to place the harness near your cockatiel, but not too close, as it may be alarmed by it.
  • Let your cockatiel get close to the harness by itself. Then, reward it each time your cockatiel shows some interest in the harness.

For the next few days, do this consistently at a scheduled time. Once you are sure the cockatiel is comfortable around the harness, your can place it on your bird.

Also, because a harness can make a cockatiel feel odd, most cockatiels will refuse to wear one. Moving to the next step too quickly will only make your cockatiel uncomfortable, so manage the process gradually. Here are some tips:

  • Undo the harness clips repeatedly to get your cockatiel accustomed to the sound.
  • Try to place the harness over your cockatiel’s head slowly.
  • Retreat if the cockatiel becomes agitated.
  • Keep this session short and reward your cockatiel.

When your cockatiel allows you to secure the harness, not how long it’s willing to keep it on. Increase the length of time the cockatiel wears the harness each day by a minute or two.

Cockatiel Enthusiast

My name is Bojan. I have been around Cockatiels for the past 7 years. I love writing about Cockatiels and helping people understand how these beautiful birds live, what they like, and how to provide them the best possible care.

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