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Choosing Bird Perches

February 15, 2021

Did you know that perches are crucial to birds’ health and well-being? Polly uses perches for grooming herself, eating, sleeping, socializing, and as a stage for when she wants to sing. In the wild, birds sit on branches of various sizes and textures. It’s important for them to have different perches, as this helps keep their feet and legs strong. While getting perches isn’t complicated, there are some things to keep in mind when buying and arranging them. A local Glen Ellyn, IL vet lists some of them below.


Size is one of the most important things to consider. A finch will have a hard time using perches made for parrots, and vice versa. In general, look for perches that your pet can put her foot about ¾ of the way around. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.


You’ll find perches made from all sorts of materials. Many birds seem to prefer porous wood perches. This is fine. Just keep in mind they won’t last very long.  Avoid ones that are made from sandpaper. These can actually hurt your feathered pal’s feet! It’s also best to avoid cheap plastic perches. Polly also loves rope or hemp perches. Be sure to replace these when they start to fray! There are also concerns about pumice and cement perches. Ask your vet for advice on these.


Your winged friend should always have at least two perches. One perch should be fairly rigid, and the other should be more flexible. You can also use real branches, as long as the wood is clean and non toxic. Your vet can give you more information. 


Once you have the perches picked out, you’ll need to pick a spot to place them. Make sure that Polly can use her perches without being cramped. Your pet should be able to extend her wings without touching the cage top or sides. Avoid putting the perch over your feathered friend’s food and water dishes. If you do, they’ll soon be contaminated.


You’ll need to move or rearrange your colorful pet’s perches at least once a week. This is one reason that it’s good to have plenty of extras. You can take one set out for cleaning, and put a different one in. 

As your local Glen Ellyn, IL veterinary clinic, we are here to help! Please feel free to contact us anytime!