Birds have beautiful feathers, wonderful energy, large personalities and really sharp claws! Play time and interaction with your feathered friend is fun and essential but getting scratched by your pet is neither fun nor a burden that must be born.
As a captive bird, your pet spends pretty much all of their time on their feet and there is no under stating the importance of keeping your bird buddy’s feet super healthy! That regiment MUST include caring for their claws!
This is where the essential decision of choosing the correct perch or perches for your bird comes in, as well as knowing when and how to trim their claws.
A bird uses a perch for balance, gripping, chewing, biting, wiping their beak and a perch is a natural way to keep a birds claws from getting too long. There are some very key things to keep in mind when choosing a perch.
- A bird should have more than one type of perch. Birds need different textures and sizes of perches for better foot health and to work different muscles.
- A textured, uneven perch is a good natural instrument for keeping claws blunted. Natural wood and Mineral are top choices.
- Always use a safe and non toxic material.
- When using natural branches make sure they are used from non poisonous plants that haven’t been sprayed with herbicides or insecticides.
What type of perch is best?
- Wood. Most cages come with a wood perch, which is not really bad but they tend to be pretty smooth, like the pine dowels. For blunting your birds nails and to help with grip the perch needs to be uneven. If you don’t want to throw it out you can rough it up with sandpaper. Note: Make sure that there is no sandpaper residue on the perch! Can you imagine having to stand all day on sandpaper with bare feet. Ouch! There are many types of wood, choose one that had a variety of diameters and shapes. One with branches and knots are very good. Natural, textured wood is one of the top perches used by bird experts and is always recommended for keeping claws shorter.
- Rope and plastic. Rope is great for your pet and plastic is easy to clean and is hardier but can be slippery especially for heavier and wing clipped birds. If plastic is what you go with, again, rough it up with sandpaper and choose acrylic over PVC. It’s practically indestructible and PVC can be chewed up and swallowed by your beloved friend, which can lead to health problems.
- Mineral. Every bird should have a mineral perch! They are one of the best materials for aiding in blunting a birds claws and cleaning beaks. These perches have great texture and are also referred to as concrete or cement perch.
How Long Should My Birds Claws Be?
There are two ways to measure a healthy length for your pets claws. One is to make sure that when they grip the perch, the claws can just touch. Another rule of thumb, is to make sure that when your bird stands on a flat surface, the claw is just a hair’s breath from touching it.
If a bird’s claws are too short, they could take a bad fall, also a possibility if the perch is too smooth. If the claws are too long, not only do you end up getting scratched, but birds can scratch and hurt themselves too! Look for rough or scabby areas or bloody abrasions.
Keep in mind that eventually, your feathered friend will need to have its claws trimmed. It’s just the way it is!
Many people choose to have their vet do this, since they are the experts and can treat any bleeding.
To recap: The top choices for perches for aiding in claw blunting is a natural wood or rough wood perch and mineral. Know when your bird’s claws are too long or too short. Be very careful and be knowledgeable if you are going to trim your bird’s claws yourself.
How Will King’s Cages Help?
We have bee pollen, 100% digestible perches as well as desert sand perches. They are colorful and completely safe for your beloved bird!