Shoot a Note To

sandy mcpadden behavior consulting 

 

 

Phone
Phone
IMG_1144.jpg

The Buzz on Enrichment

Come and learn how to spice up your pets life! Follow The Buzz on Enrichment for great DIY enrichment for the animals in your world. 

 

Filtering by Tag: enrichment

The Day I Took Ellies Toys Away.

sandy mcpadden

That't right, I said it. I took Ellies toys away. 

And this beautiful lady is to blame. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

I push enrichment down the throats of anyone who will listen. You have a dog? yeah, you're learning about enrichment. You have a neighbor who's sister used to have a bird? Yeah, you're learning about enrichment too. 

Sometimes I forget to think like a zookeeper with my pets at home. If you're new here, then you haven't heard me talk about how zookeepers are the most creative enrichment creators in the entire world.

Zookeepers are the most creative enrichment creators in the entire world. 

The #1 go-to enrichment at zoos has to be a tie between cardboard boxes (cats aren't the only ones who love a good box) and browse. When I say Browse, I mean natural tree/shrub/plant clippings that are safe for the animal getting them. 

I am still new to the Midwest and not that great with plant identification off the top of my head so browse doesn't jump out at me like it did in AZ. But, as I was trimming this tree in my front yard I figured I should see what she was. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

Naturally, its a parrot safe tree that I have been walking by a million times a day and not sharing with my bird...whoops. 

Anyways, my tree happens to be a Hawthorn and she is listed as parrot safe here and here

Do me and your pets a favor and walk around your property and familiarize yourself with whats growing around you. You'll be blown away by what is growing in your own garden. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

Like the name implies, she has thorns. Even though I think that Ellie would probably be fine with some thorns, these things were no joke. 

So I nipped them off before filling her cage. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

We don't use pesticides or fertilizers on our property so I feel comfortable using browse from my yard. I would be a tad more cautious taking browse from unfamiliar locations. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

I only put browse in half of her cage and left her door open to give her the opportunity to stay away if it was a little too scary. But, in true Ellie fashion, she blew off my concern and dove straight into it. 

parrot foraging parrot enrichment

Bring the outside in sometimes. Let them be birds and shred some shit up. We all know that its what they love to do and what a great way to change up their environment and try something new. 

P.S you'll be cleaning up a huge mess. I remove it all the next day and bring back the basic toys. This fun doesn't last forever. 

 

About that Egg Cup

sandy mcpadden

There is an easy rule to feeding rabbits. Always have free access to hay and you can feed about an egg cup full of pellets per bun a day. That being said, lets make a festive supervised foraging toy! 

rabbit enrichment

We could get way more nitty gritty about diets here, but I am no expert on nutrition so I will leave that to your veterinarian to discuss with you. 

I am, however REALLY good at helping animals display natural behaviors so, lets do that! 

rabbit enrichment

 

Heres what you'll need:

  • Fillable Easter Eggs

  • Drill

  • Pellets

  • Espadrilles (Sort of Optional, but they really help get you in the Spring feel)

 

rabbit enrichment

Just drill a hole or two a tad larger than your pellet size in each egg, scoop some pellet in and your done. 

Easy, right?!

rabbit enrichment

I would only suggest this foraging toy be used supervised. While its great fun, novel, and allows them the exercise their bodies and minds...the plastic is flimsy and not suitable for alone time. 

{E} is even more than anyone that you adore

sandy mcpadden

Ellie is sort of my heart song. 

parrot enrichment

This little chicken takes up a stupid amount of my day. And I love it. 

Enrichment for her (like everyone) is a necessity. She's obviously naked and to prevent her from being even more naked...we switch out/add new/alter/move around things in her cage daily. Or randomly throughout the day. All day. I am changing her environment all day...trying to emulate what she experienced in the wild. 

Because she was literally flying free as a wild bird in the beginning of her own story. 

Anyways. 

Sometimes Im awesome and I concoct really intricate works of art. Other times though, I don't. This is one of those times.

Behold the paper mache symbol

parrot enrichment

 

This paper mache "E" was $6 at my local craft supply store. Ive made foraging toys for the bunnies before but today I'm going basic. She's just getting the "E" for some space saving shredding fun. You'll see a theme in her cage. Paper is her thing. Ellie has no time for wood in her life. 

parrot enrichment

 

{E}asy peasy. 

Get it? E-asy peasy? whatever.

#shredpapernotfeathers

 Im out.