Training Lovebirds

Your lovebird MUST be tame before trying to teach it anything.

The first thing you want to train your bird is not to bite. One thing you need to remember is, if your lovie is biting your jewelry, your nails, hair etc., then bites your finger and hurts you, it is not fair to punish him/her for it.

When your lovebird bites, simply say “NO” or “NO BITING” in a stern voice and move the bird. Again do not yell, at this point he/she will yell back and most likely bite harder. If after approximately one week of using this command, you see no improvement (your lovie still bites just as hard and just as often), take your thumb and index finger, place on each side of beak and VERY GENTLY squeeze saying “NO” or “NO BITING.” If you do not fell comfortable doing this try gently shaking whatever your lovebird happens to be standing on or whatever he/she happens to be biting. It is hard for them to concentrate on keeping their balance and biting at the same time. Once again, use the usual command.

If your lovebird is a squawker, this is for you. First of all, you need to find the reason. He/she may be bored, want attention, or something could be bothering him/her (a fly, the T.V.). Most likely he/she wants attention so try just talking to the bird to calm him/her down. Ignore the squawking and say things like “What are doing?, Do you want to play?, What’s all the noise for?” And say them in a happy, excited tone.

As lovebirds are small parrots, few have been known to talk. Actually, they mimic sounds and small words. However, if a talking bird is what you want, I strongly suggest you purchase a larger parrot such as a macaw or African Grey. If you are expecting a lovebird to talk, you will only become disappointed and the bird will end up neglected.

Lovebirds have the IQ of a three to four year old child and can be trained to ‘wave’ their foot, put objects in a container, or play ‘fetch.’ First of all, you need to show your lovebird what it is you want him/her to do, break it down in steps. And each step your lovebird takes to reaching the goal, reward him/her with a treat. The key to training is repetitiveness and rewarding when behavior is positive.