Bird toys can keep your bird happy and help avoid behavioral problems. Birds are highly intelligent creatures that require stimulation and variety. Toys can provide mental stimulation as well as be a source of grooming for beak and nails. In addition, having a variety of bird toys to play with can relieve undesirable behavior like screeching, feather picking and nipping which could be caused from boredom and pent up energy.

Bird toys come in many shapes sizes and materials. As always with pets, safety comes first so you want to make sure you get toys that are fun for your bird but that also are safe. Buy a bunch of toys and rotate them every 2 weeks so that he doesn’t get bored with the same toys. Here’s some tips on what to and what not to buy.

Size

It is important to pick bird toys that are appropriate for your type and size of bird. A small plastic toy might be fine for a parakeet, but a large parrot could crush the toy leaving fragments of plastic that could harm him. Conversely, don’t give your smaller bird a gigantic toy meant for a large parrot, it could frighten him and probably won’t be very useful to him due to the size.

Safety

Bird toys come in different forms. Along with size, you should make sure the toy is made from non-toxic components and free from sharp edges. Make sure there are no parts that can be broken off or crevices that a foot or beak could get stuck in. Also check that there won’t be any hanging pieces that the bird could hang himself on. Make sure that leather and wood bird toys are untreated or colored with non toxic dye and metal chains have the loops soldered shut.

Cleaning

You want to keep your bird toys clean, so wash and disinfect them when you rotate them out of the cage (or if they become soiled). You should also inspect them to make sure there are no broken parts or frayed edges that could cause harm to your bird.