Knowing if a pet is happy can be hard
We all want our pets to be happy, of course. However, because they can’t speak, it can be very difficult to know exactly how they are feeling.
Sure, they can make noises and you may be able to discern that they are trying to communicate something but unless you know your pet, it’s unlikely that you’ll know exactly what they are trying to tell you.
This is especially difficult when you consider that all pets are different. The way a cat communicates, for example, will be very different from how a dog or bird may communicate.
This can even vary within species. What we mean is the way one bird communicates will not be the same as the way another bird communicates. This is because all animals, at least to some extent, will have their own personalities.
Introduction to knowing if your parrotlet is happy
Parrotlets are one of the types of birds that people often get quite concerned about. To look at, these tiny little things can seem so helpless and owners are constantly on edge trying to make sure that they are happy and healthy.
Of course, this would be a heck of a lot easier if the parrotlets could just tell us how they feel.
In this article, we want to take the time to tell you all about parrotlets and how you may be able to tell if they are happy.
Because they can’t talk to you, you need to be adept at spotting other signs that they are happy (or signs that they are not so happy).
Here you will find out how to spot the signs of parrotlets being happy, signs that they are just okay and how you can look out for signs that they may be unhappy. Before we can do that, we must first look at what exactly a parrotlet is…
The different types of parrotlets
Parrotlet is the name given to a group of different parrots, rather than just one kind of parrot as is commonly thought. They are the smallest group of New World parrots and include the genera Touit, Forpus, and Nannopsittaca.
Within each of the genus groups above are several species. Within the Touit genus, there are 7 species of parrotlet, within the Forpus genus there are 9 species of parrotlet, and within the Nannopsitaca genus, there are just 2 species of parrotlet.
With this in mind, when we are referring to parrotlets in our article, we are referring to all of the above. No matter what type of parrotlet you have, you can use the advice we are going to provide you with to learn about all types of parrotlet.
That being said, some types of parrotlets are more commonly kept as pets whereas others are not because they are protected or not suited to aviculture (the name given to the practice of keeping birds).
There are only two species of parrotlets that are commonly kept as pets. These both belong to the Forpus genus and are the Green-rumped parrotlet and the Pacific parrotlet.
Some other types of species may be available from specific breeders, but these are the two species that are best suited to being kept for aviculture and are by far the most popular species for these purposes.
Signs parrotlets are happy
There are several tell-tale signs that you can keep an eye out for to see if your parrotlet is happy. In an ideal world, they would be able to talk to us and tell us exactly how they are doing, but sadly we’re not Dr. Dolittle.
That being said, when you know what signs to look out for it can be much easier to see how your little feathered friends are doing.
Singing is one of the main ways you can tell if your parrotlet is happy. If you hear them vocalizing a little tune then you will likely have very happy, content, and healthy birds on your hands.
If they like the attention being on them when you are watching them sing, then they may do this often – they can be vocal little things.
Likewise, whistling is another surefire way that your parrotlet is content and healthy. If your little parrot pal is vocal in this way then you can rest assured that you’re doing a good job with them.
As well as singing and whistling, parrotlets can be vocal in other ways. For example, they often chatter and talk when they are happy.
Soft chattering as they are getting on with their daily activities is a good sign that they are content and relaxed. It may even be a sign that they are learning to talk! Like the singing, they may do this even more if you or your loved ones are around as a way of letting you know they are there.
Another rather vocal way that parrotlets let you know that they are happy and wanting attention from you is by clicking their tongues against their beaks. They usually do this when they are inviting you to pet them or cuddle them!
Oftentimes, parrotlets may hang upside down. This can be a little worrisome for new parrotlet owners but we are happy to report that this is usually a sign that they are content and healthy. It is normal behavior for parrotlets.
One last thing we want to discuss regarding the happiness of your parrotlet is regurgitating. As gross as this may be, there have been instances where parrotlets have tried to regurgitate their food onto their humans.
This, as gross as we may find it, is a sign they care for you. This is how they feed their young, and so it is a sign that they feel love towards you.
Signs parrotlets are sad
It is also important to get to know some of the signs that your parrotlet may not be happy. As you will know by now, parrotlets are very vocal little creatures, and as such, you should look out for some surefire vocal signs that they aren’t happy.
For example, if they start growling or screaming then this is never a good sign. They are signs of aggression, worry, fear, or that something is wrong.
Growling birds should not be approached, but try to ascertain if there is anything that could be causing this reaction and remove it.
If they are screaming, carefully approach your parrotlet and give it some attention. Usually, this is a sign that they are feeling lonely and in need of some love from you. Remember, parrotlets are very social and need attention!
You should also be wary if your parrotlet starts to tap its feet or fan its feathers out. These are signs of aggression and you should leave them alone if they act like this. It is their way of showing how strong they are and often means someone is on their territory.
Mixed parrotlet signals
Some actions that parrotlets can do could mean many things. For example, clicking their beak can often be a positive thing and it could just be a sign that they are content. However, if they click continuously, it could mean that they are a little agitated. Do not handle them if they are doing this.
You should also take note of their feathers. Certain actions such as ruffling, picking at them, and making their crests larger or smaller could indicate different things.
Sometimes they ruffle their feathers when they are grooming themselves, but if their feathers constantly remain like this, it could be a sign that they are unwell.
Likewise, picking their feathers could be a cleaning action, but if it happens a lot then it is likely they are bored and in need of attention. Parrotlets need to be stimulated as they are very social critters ensure they have lots to play with and that you spend time with them daily.