Parakeets, also known as budgerigars or budgies are small, colorful birds with a big, colorful personality.
They are social, musical, and smart, so they need a lot of stimulation. You can’t personally keep your parakeet entertained 24/7, but you can provide your bird with a fun and stimulating variety of parakeet toys.
The best parakeet toys keep your bird mentally and physically active. The best parakeet toys also keep your parakeet safe.
Did you know you should never put a mirror in a cage with just one parakeet? Or that chrome, brass, and copper are potentially poisonous to parakeets?
In this article we will tell you how to make sure your bird stays interested in its toys.
We’ll tell you how to create a parakeet play scape and what kinds of parakeet toys to avoid. But first we’ll discuss the kinds of toys your budgie should play with.
What kinds of toys do Parakeets like?
Parakeets in cages like to do the same kinds of things in their cages that they do in nature.
They enjoy toys that reward them with toys. They like chew toys.
They play on swings, ladders, perches, and trapezes.
Great toys for parakeets emulate aspects of their natural habitat, let them exercise their instincts, and maybe even enhance their skills at being a budgie.
Look for a variety of ways a single toy can give a parakeet opportunities to act like a bird.
A toy that makes noises, or rings and ladders that lead to chewy toys, or maybe a little gym for your parakeet can keep your pet occupied for hours on end,
Accessories that make toys fun for parakeets include:
- Beads and balls. Small birds love beads, but you should keep small beads and balls away from parrots so they won’t choke on them.
- Swing toys, rings, and ladders. In nature, parakeets spend their days swaying and climbing. These toys keep your budgies amused while making sure they get healthy exercise.
- Mirrors. Mirrors give parakeets the illusion that they live in a flock. You shouldn’t put in a mirror in a cage with a single bird, however, because your parakeet will protect its “companion,” the only bird it thinks it has in its life, at the expense of getting along with you. People have been bitten by budgies after putting a mirror in a single bird’s cage.
- Musical toys. Parakeets love to make music. Bells are good parakeet toys in two ways: They are loud, and they are musical.
10 Toys Your Parakeets Would Love
Let’s have a look at the 10 best toys you can get for your parakeet that they would love:
Natural Coco Hideaway and Ladder from Prevue Hendryx
What could be more natural for your parakeet than hanging out inside a coconut?
This parakeet toy comes with a peckable, texture coconut fiber ladder.
The coconut will protect smaller birds, but it may be a little snug for your larger birds.
Super Bird Creations Rainbow Bridge Bird Toy
Here is a colorful bridge parakeets can perch on and explore to their heart’s content.
It has dangling features to keep birds engaged and it’s chewable.
Different colors, textures and shapes keep birds mentally engaged.
Wesco Pet Kebab
Just so we’re clear, the Wesco Pet Kebab Shreddable Parakeet Toy is a kebab for your pets, not a kebab of your pets.
This toy consists of rings of pithy, soft wood that your birds can peck to work out their aggressions.
This toy is completely biodegradable, but since it’s made for pecking apart, it can make a mess in the cage.
SUPERBIRD Creations Parakeet Platform
This lightweight fiber platform suspended on colorful chains helps your parakeets build coordination.
They can swing and sway on their perch and fly away like they were flying in the wind in the wild.
Many birds love this toy.
Planet Pleasures Pineapple Foraging Bird Toy
Don’t want to trim your birds’ beaks?
Let them keep them naturally trimmed with this hanging pineapple foraging toy. The shreddable material also fights boredom and anxiety.
Planet Pleasures Spiked Piñata Natural Bird Toy
The colored streamers of this hangable parakeet piñata will keep your parakeets occupied for hours.
The construction is non-toxic and tangle-free.
Vktech Parakeet Toy
Here’s a hammock of colorful sticks that parakeets can use to rest in their cage.
And when they are tired of perching, they can use this toy for biting, grinding, and chewing. The wood is colored with non-toxic vegetable dyes.
This is a great toy for parakeets, but they will get bored if it’s the only toy for parakeets.
Yooyoung Stainless Steel Bell Toy
If you have a problem with parakeets that beat up their toys, this bell toy is just what you need to avoid making one more trip to the pet supply store.
It’s unbreakable. it’s mess-free. It’s clean and shiny.
The only possible drawback is that it makes a tiny sound for tiny birds.
Penn Plax Wood Bird Playpen
This non-toxic parakeet toy has a rope bridge, a ladder, and movable toys. it will entertain your parakeets for ours
The only downside: It needs to be placed in the bottom of the cage, so it will accumulate bird droppings.
J W Pet Company Bird Bell Toy
Do your parakeets love to make a little racket?
With this toy they can pull either of two colorful ropes to make an almost-quite sound with the J W Pet Company Bird Bell.
The only downside to this toy is that its sound is a little tinny and can grate on your nerves if it’s the only toy in the cage.
How can I get my parakeet to play with toys?
Parakeets are naturally curious birds. More often than not, you don’t have to do anything to get them interested in a new toy.
Just leave the toy in your bird’s cage, and it will start playing with it in a few hours or a few days.
But if you want instant gratification after buying your bird a new toy:
- Place a bit of food, like a leaf of spinach or a sliver of almond or slice of fruit, on the toy. If the toy is a puzzle, place the food in the toy. Food and fun are powerful motivators for your bird.
- Give your bird a demonstration. Sit in front of the cage and play with the toy yourself, with your bird or birds watching. Then put the toy in the cage.
- If your birdie doesn’t bite, let it perch on your finger and move it closer to the toy to get it to check the toy out.
Parakeets will be more interested in colorful toys than in monotone, dark toys.
They will be turned on by toys that they can play on.
How many toys should parakeets have in their cages?
There is a one-word answer to the question of how many toys parakeets should have in their cages:
Ten to fifteen budgie toys in a budgie cage is about right.
Parakeets don’t need just different colors and different textures and different kinds of exercise as they use their toys.
They also need lots of toys to keep from getting bored with just one or two or three toys they play with all the time.
Other kinds of birds can be content with just four or five toys.
Parakeets need a cage full of toys to avoid becoming bored.
Bored budgies have a way of becoming injured budgies.
If your parakeet shows signs of boredom like biting its cage, plucking out its feathers (or its cage mate’s feathers) tapping its toes, loss of interest in food, self-mutilation, aggression, or repetitive behaviors, give it some new toys!
What do you look for in parakeet toys?
In their native Australia, parakeets live in a challenging, colorful, constantly moving environment.
The toys that on some level remind parakeets of their ancestral home give them (and you) the most pleasure.
Here’s what to look for when you are buying parakeet toys:
- Color. Bright colors, green, yellow, blue, and red, appeal to parakeets. Changing the lighting for your parakeet cage also changes color, giving birds the illusion of getting new toys. Scientists at Yale University found that budgerigars have a different perception of colors when their light source is filtered through blue or yellow plastic.
- Size. Small birds like budgies need small toys. You should make sure any parrots or mynah birds or larger birds don’t get into your parakeet toys, because they can choke on them. On the other hand, parakeets can’t play happily with toys for big birds.
- Texture. Parakeets like a variety of textures:A selection of smooth, rough, warm, cold, tickling, vibrating, wet, and dry textures keep your parakeets mentally stimulated.
- Sounds. Toys that make musical, noisy, funny, or unexpected sounds are more pleasing to parakeets than toys that don’t make any sounds at all. Noisy toys that keep the attention of your parrots may also amuse your parakeets.
How to create the equivalent of Disneyland for parakeets
A parakeet playground is a bigger-that-a-cage area that you build to entertain your birds.
Parakeet playgrounds should give your birds opportunities to forage, enjoy bird treats, swing, perch, climb, and play with bell toys.
They should have a variety of colors, textures, shapes, sizes, and locations to keep your bird stimulated.
A parakeet playground will provide all the mental and physical exercise your parakeets need to stay healthy, happy, and free of stress.
Once you acquire your parakeet play toys, you can start your indoor parakeet play park by joining poles together to make the structure.
Acquire a crossbar and a low platform that will act as a foundation. You don’t want your foundation to vibrate or shake.
You add bird netting later to make it escape-proof. Then put the toys inside.
It’s important to keep your parakeet play scape sanitary. Hang ropes and porous materials in places that parakeets won’t poop on them.
Remove all the plastic and metal parts ever three months to sanitize them.
You don’t want your birds to catch bacterial, fungal, or viral diseases in their place for having fun.
What do you want to be sure not to do when buying parakeet toys?
It’s not hard to find safe, fun parakeet toys.
But be sure to keep these precautions in mind while you are shopping.
- Choice of wood. Parakeets can break their beaks on hardwoods like cedar, cherry, and oak. Plywood and even particle board can be hazardous for your birds. If you are adding wooden ladders and perches to your parakeet play scape make sure they are made of softwoods: Pine, balsa, birch, basswood, or manzanita is OK.
- Galvanized steel is coated with copper. If it leaches off the steel, the excess copper can be toxic to your birds. Stainless steel is OK.
- Leather “chew” toys need to be made from leather tanned with vegetable products. Leather than has been tanned with formaldehyde or chromium can poison our birds.
- Ladders shouldn’t be too thin or too narrow, so parakeets won’t get tangled up in them.
- Sharp edges on chains and wires can cause beak and toe injuries. Make sure the edges of chains, wires, and ladders are welded shut.
- Parakeets that get caught in nylon or polyethylene ropes can suffer cuts and abrasions. Use ropes made from cotton, jute, or sisal.
- Nylon cloth isn’t a great choice, either. Parakeets can get their feet caught in nylon and panic.
- Parakeets can swallow the clappers in bell toys that aren’t assembled with care. Make sure clappers are safely welded inside bell toys, and they are not made of lead.
- Make sure toys don’t have any parts or extensions where parakeets and get their heads, wings, or feet stuck.
The general rule when buying budgie toys is that if it isn’t safe for your children, it isn’t safe for your birds.
All parakeet toys should be non-toxic and safe if swallowed.
Safety tips for parakeet toys
Safety isn’t just about choosing safe materials.
Safety includes supervising your parakeets to make sure they don’t have problems with their toys.
Make a habit of inspecting your parakeet’s or parakeets’ cage and toys at least once a week. Parakeets love to chew.
They’ll expose problems in their toys you and even the manufacturers fail to anticipate.
There will inevitably be some broken toys, split links, or soft toys that have become soiled and germy. Remove problem toys, clean the cage, and give your birds new toys to enjoy.
Always buy bird toys from reputable manufacturers. Check online reviews. It won’t take long to determine whether a parakeet toy is a good buy that your birds are likely to enjoy.
And if you have trouble finding the right parakeet toy, consider the brand-name toys in our top 10.
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