January is Adopt-a-Bird Month and you can find your feathered friend at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter. Birds are sensitive and intelligent animals that can provide a lifetime of companionship.

One of the beautiful birds you won’t find at the shelter is Buddy, a 10-year-old green and yellow parrot. Buddy currently resides in a foster home, but he’s available for adoption and is ready to commit to a long-term relationship.

Unlike cats and dogs, many birds have a much longer life span. Some birds live to be 50 or 60 years old! A basic rule of thumb is the larger the bird, the longer the life span. Birds are unique pets that have the potential to be with you for your entire life.

There are many different types of parrots and they vary in size and color. Buddy is a Yellow-naped Amazon parrot. We believe Buddy is a male, but parrots have no external sex organs and it can be very difficult to determine the gender of these birds.

Parrots are highly social animals and Buddy is no exception. Once he becomes comfortable in new surroundings or with new people, he is very sweet and loving. He says "Hi" and "Hello" and communicates with several different whistles. Buddy does mimic noises around the house but overall, he is relatively quiet for a parrot. He’s definitely not the squawking, screaming type.

Similar to dogs and cats, birds can be very affectionate. Buddy enjoys spending time outside of his cage and is potty-trained while being held. Once he is placed on a perch outside of his cage, he stays there until picked back up. Buddy is well-behaved though he does get nervous around large groups, so a quiet environment is best for him. Buddy is an excellent companion for someone who already has experience with birds and would be a great addition to a home.

If you’ve never shared your home with a bird before, there are lots of informative resources online and the staff at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter will be happy to get you started and answer any questions you have. Diet and nutrition are very important, as are housing, exercise, and mental stimulation. The ASPCA has a good overview of 10 things you should know before getting a bird on their website.

If parrots aren’t your birds of choice, we also have cockatiels and lovebirds currently available for adoption at the shelter. Stop by during our normal adoption and animal viewing hours, or call to make a special appointment to meet Buddy.

NOTE: Saturday, January 5th is National Bird Day and the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria will be celebrating birds all month (although we will ignore all Seahawks during Sunday’s football game.)


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