LEGO is the literal and figurative building block of our childhood and still claims the hearts of families today. It allows us to become the Master Builders of a new universe, limited only by our own imagination. But can these colorful toy blocks make for good bird toys too?
The new LEGO made today, is fortunately non-toxic, as it is designed to meet toy safety standards for children around the world. However, these standards do not apply to birds. So, is LEGO safe for birds? While newer LEGO may be safe for you, it is better to trust toys specifically designed for birds instead of giving them Legos.
Providing birds with pet-friendly enrichment toys and social interaction is essential for the wellbeing of a happy bird. The rest of this article will go on to discuss more of the benefits and cautions of bird toys.
Is It Safe for Birds to Chew On Plastic?
Plastic isn’t usually the best material choice when choosing a toy. It is an entirely man-made product after all and isn’t good for anyone to put into their bodies. If you still decide to give your bird a plastic toy be sure that it is described as non-toxic and bird-safe.
Should I Give My Bird Toys to Play With?
If you are a proud bird owner, you probably already noticed that your bird is incredibly playful and curious. Best Friends Animal Society states that in the wild, these creatures are always keeping themselves busy foraging, searching for food, socializing, cleaning their beautiful feathers, and building nests.
The best choice when selecting a toy for your bird is always to choose toys that are specifically designed for birds. Best Friends Animal Society suggests always examining toys for cracks or spaces where your bird could catch its toe and ensuring that there are no sharp ends or parts that can be chewed off and swallowed.
By providing your bird with safe toys and stimulating activities, you are mimicking some of the experiences they may have in the wild.
Toys Keep Birds from Being Bored
A bored bird in an unhappy bird. Best Friends Animal Society notes that if captive birds are not provided with the appropriate amount of stimulation to meet their needs, you are inviting an array of behavioral and or medical problems. For instance, it might begin screaming or biting and clawing at other items in your home.
Just because your bird is a pet, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have the emotional, physical, and instinctual needs of wild birds. Besides toys, you can also keep your bird happy by providing it with ample daily socialization and out-of-cage time to be free to explore.
Best Toys to Give to Birds
Best Friends Animal Society suggests that wood and acrylic are good choices for bird toys. Other natural materials such as vegetable-tanned leather or rope made of 100% cotton are also good options.
Birds also love colors and tearing things up such as food-grade cardboard and paper. Pay attention to the hook used to attach the toy to the cage and always choose the C-hook.
To check the current price and availability of bird safe toys, click here to view the selection on Amazon.
What Toys Should I Avoid?
Any toys with slits that may catch and break a bird’s toe or small pieces that may break off and become a choking hazard should definitely be avoided. For example, although bells are attractive and shiny, the cracks can easily catch your bird’s nail or toe and cause severe harm. Avoid attachments using long cords or chains that birds can become caught in.
What Toy Size Should I Choose for My Bird?
The size of your bird’s toy will depend on the size of your bird, of course! When choosing a bird toy that is designed for birds, they will indicate on the packaging whether it is for a small, medium, or large bird. Best Friends Animal Society indicates that toys made for smaller birds, such as cockatiels, should never be given to larger birds, such as macaws.
How Should I Introduce My Bird to Its New Toy?
When giving a new toy to a bird, you want to avoid potential issues. You can do this by introducing the toy to your bird outside of its cage where you can observe your bird’s reaction closely. Initially, your bird may be fearful of the new object. If so, move the toy further away and give your bird time to become curious about its new toy when it’s ready.
How Often Should I Change My Bird’s Toys?
Many birds, such as parrots, are highly intelligent creatures. Just like us, they can become bored with the same old toy. That doesn’t mean you have to throw old toys away! Simply rotate their toys weekly to keep them engaged and be sure not to overcrowd their cage with too many toys at one time.
Birds are intelligent creatures with emotional, physical, and instinctual needs. Toys are not simply a luxury but are an essential component of their overall health and wellbeing. If you are choosing to keep a bird as a pet, it is your responsibility as a pet owner to ensure that your feathery companion is happy.
By learning about the toys that are appropriate for your bird, you are ensuring that they are getting their physical and mental exercise in a safe way. Although toys such as LEGO may seem safe for your bird, it is always a better choice to choose toys that are designed with a bird’s physical body and behaviors in mind.
By carefully selecting the right toy for your bird, you are ensuring that they have experiences that are similar to those in their natural habitat. Not to mention, you will have the satisfaction of watching your bird play happily with its new toy.