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Training Parrots to Speak

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What pet owner in the world doesn’t want their pet to talk? Probably no one! If you were to choose, you’d like your beloved furry or feathered best friend to chat. Lucky for you because there’s one gregarious feathered pet that you can train to become chatty – a parrot. With proper technique you can train parrots to say the right words when you need it. Not just random, wrong words like “ugly” when you’re trying to impress your crush with your parrot, but the right words like “hello” when somebody says “hi.”

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Why Can Parrots Talk

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Before going further to train parrots, you might be wondering why parrots can talk and other birds, including some parrots, can’t. Parrots can talk because their tongue is shaped like human tongue. Together with their throat muscle, the parrots can imitate short words they frequently hear from their owners.

Parrot Species That Are Easy to Train

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Of all parrot species, the easiest to train to speak are the African Grey parrots. They are very intelligent and fond of imitating words they hear from their owners. If you can’t see who’s talking, you could easily mistaken a talking African Grey for a human. Other best talkers include the Amazon parrots such as the Blue Fronts, Yellow Napes, and the Double Yellowheads. And of the smaller parrot species, the budgies, parakeets, and the cockatiels are the best to train to speak, although the females of these species can’t speak. Generally, the smaller the parrot, the harder they are to be taught to speak.

Why Parrots Learn to Curse

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In general, parrots can easily remember and mimic words that are spoken when you or the parrot is exited. That’s why almost the first word that parrots learn is “hi” or “hello” because you say these words to your parrot in a heighten, exited tone. So now you know why your Budgie easily learned to say the “F” word – because you don’t curse in a slow, lethargic voice.

Therefore, train parrots in an exited voice. It’s also best to train parrots during feeding because they’re always exited to see you bringing a bowl of fruit. When feeding, repeat the words you want your parrot to speak like “I’m hungry” or “yum, yum.” The play time is also another exiting moment for you and your parrots. So use this opportunity to teach them new vocabularies.

Train Parrots in the Kitchen

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Parrots learn to speak with repetition and constant association. So the best way to train parrots is in the kitchen where the conversation is always lively and varied. This works best for Budgies and Amazon parrots that are best to train while young. Frequently associating with chatting humans can train parrots to become chatty too. Just don’t put your parrot too close to the oven or the stove because some cooking fumes can be nauseating to parrots. Not to mention accidents can happen.

CD Players to Train Parrots

Although you can use CD players for repetition, it’s never a good way to train parrots to speak this way. Why? Because parrots can’t learn the proper action or situation to associate the word it learned from the CD player. The CD player can’t associate the word “bye, bye” when you leave. You don’t want your parrot to say “bye, bye” to your guests coming at the door, right? When you teach parrots to say a word, always associate it with the right action. So the best time to train parrots to say “night, night” is when you switch off the light for the night.

To recap, train parrots to speak words with an alert, exited voice. And although you can teach old parrots new tricks, it’s best to train parrots starting at a young age.

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