Karen S. relates,
Mitch, I have had birds for the last 35 years all have lived a wonderful life and went to the rainbow bridge before I wanted them to.
I am now 72 years old and I do not want to place her where she will be adopted out.
She is 26 years old, a rescue, and needs a special bird person.
I live outside Annapolis, MD, and have found places that do the rescues and adopt them out or sell them.
I want a forever home for her.
For all her faults she is special and should not be mistreated.
Can you please help me find a place where she will be safe and happy?
I will pay for the care if responsible people are involved but I want to know she is taken care of and has a companion and not be alone.
Please give me some contacts that you know are reliable and safe.
The birds did not ask to come here as toys and I have done everything to prevent that.
Unfortunately, with age, I have lost some strength.
Please help me and if not please answer and say you cannot.
I wait for your advice.
You have been a great support for all of us. Thank you and God Bless
You have brought up a very good point about aging and our birds. This problem has been around for a long time, but it is not widely publicized of course.
Birdkeepers tend to be private people, mainly to keep our birds safe from enterprising folk who think parrots are valuable and might break into our homes and take them.
As we age, if we don’t have a strong family base, we won’t have the support for them that they need.
We serve the needs daily of people with birds coast to coast, yet we really don’t know all of our customers that well.
At least not well enough to know when they stop buying, that perhaps it is due to that they were elderly and could no longer care for their birds, or have passed.
I am really only aware of a couple of our customers who went away due to falling victim to poor health or Alzheimers and I never did find out what happened to their birds.
Hopefully, a family member took them in, we will never really know of course.
I have a customer currently who used to call me weekly to order for her birds and over the past year, her Alzheimers has progressed to the point that she can no longer call me and if she does, she doesn’t know what she needs.
Hard to help her when I am in Indiana and she is in New York. Her husband has been making most of the calls lately, thankfully he is there for her and the birds.
Mitch and I are not young ourselves at 69 and 64 respectfully.
When my last best birdie passed, I didn’t rush out to get another baby bird that could outlive me.
We instead adopted an elderly African Ringneck, Keto, who at 18 years old is not likely to be left alone when we pass.
But over the past year, one month apart, we took in two rescues that desperately needed homes.
An 8-year-old Quaker named Chili and an 8-year-old Cockatiel named Barney.
Well, they each have a good 20 years left to live.
Both Mitch and I are in pretty good health, but not so sure that we will be around in 20 years.
We also have no family to take them in, much less us when we become infirm.
Ideally, we need to plan ahead. But it isn’t always easy or within our budgets to set up a trust fund or make paid arrangements for someone to swoop in and carry off our pets who remain after we can no longer care for them.
I recommend to right now, reach out to local bird clubs, bird rescues, join online bird groups and make some connections before time gets away from you.
Perhaps hire a local teenager to come in and clean the cages and bird sit, to get to know your bird and develop a relationship with him, and perhaps you will feel better about passing him along to someone who will love him.
Have you talked to your avian vet about this? Perhaps a young vet tech may be interested in your bird which would be a marvelous way of ensuring that the right care will be available for him.
Mitch said he would try to locate connections in your area, but we will need to reach out as well in hopes of some good options falling our way.