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Bird Toy Safety

Birds are very lovable and cute little pets, and are often quite playful! In order to keep Polly happy, you’ll need to provide her with lots of fun toys. Safety is crucial here: your pet could be seriously injured—or even killed—by playing with inappropriate or dangerous toys. A local Glendale, AZ vet discusses bird toy safety.

Toxicity

In general, there are three things you need to worry about when choosing bird toys. The first is toxicity. Make sure your pet’s playthings don’t contain harmful chemicals, heavy metals, or other toxins. When shopping, always remember to check the labels. Stick with products that do not contain lead or zinc, which are highly toxic to birds. You’ll also want to avoid toys that contain adhesives, glue, paint, dyes, or lacquers. These rules also apply to wood toys, which are some of Polly’s favorites.

Ingestion

Choking and ingestion are also concerns. Birds can break softer toys, such as thin plastic items, with their beaks. If Polly swallows one of these broken parts, she could choke and/or suffer serious—and potentially fatal—internal injuries. Never give your feathered buddy anything with small parts, or anything that your pet may break. Bells, for example, are often recommended. However, stronger birds can break off the clappers, and possibly ingest them. Also, make sure to choose toys that are the correct size for your pet bird. A toy that is made for a Cockatoo may be much too large for a parakeet!

Entanglement

Strangling is another danger. It’s very easy for birds to get wrapped up or stuck in toys! This is often a concern with rope toys. Play it safe, and only offer Polly short cords or ropes, nothing that is long enough to entangle her. Also, rope toys that are safe when new can become dangerous as they begin to fray, as birds can get caught in those ragged edges. For example, if a braid toy is coming apart, your pet could get her head stuck between the loosening strands. Cotton ropes are particularly prone to unraveling. Chains, both the metal kind and the plastic kind, can also be dangerous, as Polly could catch her toes between the links. You’ll also need to be careful with clips, such as carabiners.

Please contact us, your local Glendale, AZ vet clinic, for all your bird’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

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