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Bonding and Training Want to train your parrotlet? Just want to bond with your parrotlet? Ask all your questions and suggestions here.

Best treats for clicker training?

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Old 04-10-2017, 12:23 PM   #1
icehorse
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Best treats for clicker training?

Hi Guys,

Bokeh is doing great (he's 3). He has a good sized vocabulary (maybe a dozen phrases), and he likes to learn new tricks and skills.

We primarily use clicker training with Bokeh, and we're very pleased with it. At this point we use spray millet as treats. I'm worried that too much of his overall diet might be coming from the millet treats he gets while we're training / playing.

So, maybe using millet is okay? If not, does anyone have other - perhaps healthier - treats they use for training?

I should say that Bokeh's main diet is Harrison's super fine and he gets a bit of "people food" most days, some lettuce or fruit or hard boiled egg... he likes all of these okay, but he LOVES the millet.
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Old 04-10-2017, 01:35 PM   #2
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If millet is the reward that gets him going.. I think a little bite of it each time isn't the worst. I personally don't give Levi much millet because I have an elderly lovebird that is addicted to the stuff and I'm TERRIFIED of Levi getting that way too. We do training with a seed mix, so each piece is different. I think the key with clicker training is that it's just a little bit each click.
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Old 04-10-2017, 02:33 PM   #3
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Millet is a great treat.
Many people get the millet thing wrong. Millet itself is a healthy food full of energy and vitamins and other good stuff. It is quite healthy. Breaks down to energy quickly and is recommended for stressed birds for that reason. The problem is that many birds like it too much and will eat it to the exclusion of everything else if given the choice and thus have out of balance diets. As long as you limit the amount of millet and make sure your little one has a diverse diet then there is no problem giving millet to them as a treat or a training tool.
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Old 04-10-2017, 02:37 PM   #4
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When using treats in training I've generally just used something the bird really likes, some favorite that's okay for them. As an example, if your bird really liked peanuts, little pieces of crushed peanuts could work. A lot of people use millet, as well as other seeds. Just depend upon what your bird considers a 'treat.' Good luck with the clicker training!
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Old 04-10-2017, 04:53 PM   #5
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Try green pepper seeds or cantalope seeds or black oil sunflower seeds. Those are all favorites too.
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Old 04-10-2017, 05:01 PM   #6
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Jules' go to treat is walnut. Bo's was sunflower seeds
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Old 04-10-2017, 07:12 PM   #7
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Sky likes walnuts a lot too.
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Old 04-11-2017, 10:55 PM   #8
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thanks guys!

walnuts... hmmm, do you grind them up?
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Old 04-12-2017, 11:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icehorse View Post
thanks guys!

walnuts... hmmm, do you grind them up?
No, considering the amount of walnut Jules eats as in most of it ends up on me or the towel and very little in her, I gather the chewing is the part of the attraction. I buy shelled walnut used for baking at the grocery. For a treat I hold it out and she takes a nibble. Additional benefit is that she is now very familiar and happy with my hands. Considering where we started that is a very good thing.
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:54 PM   #10
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I just got my bird, Kiwi. He's 11 and the people I got him from had him for 10 years. They told me his birthday and that he uses to talk and do the wolf whistle. I've had him for a few months and I'm finally able to give him seeds from my hand. He loves the sunflower seeds in his food, so I've started taking them out and using them to train. The problem is, he's out of control. Since I got him, he seems angry all the time and if we just walk in the room, he screams his head off. Since I started hand feeding him seeds, he will now get chatter and go to the door that I open and he waits for the seeds. If I put my hand in there without a seed, he attacks me and flies to the perch in the back of his cage. How do I clicker train if I can't put my hand in there without a treat?
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