Under The Cue

Under The Cue

Under the Cue is a blog about family, genealogy, emotions, or anything else that suits my fancy.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Betrayed By A Bird

I just got bit by my parrot. It was on my thumb. The bite looks like a can opener got me. It not only hurts physically but I feel hurt emotionally. Every time she bites me I go through a feeling of being traicionado. I can't remember the word in English. After looking it up on Wiktionary I remember. I felt betrayed. Traicionado means betrayed.

Definition from Wiktionary Spanish Verb traicionar (first-person singular present traiciono, first-person singular preterite traicioné, past participle traicionado)

  1. to betray
I feel betrayed. I love my parrot and she loves me but sometimes I forget she is a wild animal and if she gets scared she will bite.

I was trying to clean out a cabinet and going to remove three coffee mugs. The kind you carry in your car. I was looking at the lids for some coffee mugs and had the parrot in one hand and the lids in the other. I was going to put the lids in the hand I had my parrot in for a moment and wham, she bit me hard. I had to get her off me so I jerked her and she went to the floor. I went to the bathroom in pain. I got the alcohol and cotton and cleaned the wound. I also cleaned it with Hydrogen Peroxide and then I put an antibiotic gel on it. I cried, but it was mostly a moan from the gut.

I asked my husband to pick her up and put her in her cage. He found her climbing up the other parrots cage. He wouldn't touch her. He's been bitten by her really bad several times too.

I got a basket and picked up the parrot with it and put her in her cage. I won't touch her until tomorrow. I need to stop feeding her nuts for a while. If parrots get too much protein they get nasty. She had oatmeal, blueberries, and apple this morning. When I left the house I gave her some dried fruit. She had a chicken bone, cornbread, lettuce, tomato, pasta, potato when we ate dinner. After dinner she was wanting a nut so I gave her one. Only one. Then is when the bite happened. I shouldn't have held her in one hand and tried to pick up the lids in the same hand. It was my mistake and I paid for it dearly.

She is on a new diet with a lot less nuts and protein as of this moment. I'll have to find her something to snack on now. I got hugs from my husband and I felt better. He put a bandage on it over the ointment.

Wild animals are...wild animals. No matter how much you love them they are still wild. Reminds me of the lady who's face was torn off by the chimpanzee.

Charla Nash, the lady who recently had her face torn off by Travis the chimpanzee, made a mistake that most people make. What mistake is that? People forget that animals are not human and try to give them a human identity. The owner tried that by, well, here is part of the story about how the Chimpanzee was treated as a human.
  • Conklin told reporters the chimp was acting so agitated earlier that afternoon that Herold gave him the anti-anxiety drug Xanax in some tea. Conklin also suggested the animal may have attacked Nash because she was wearing her hair differently and perhaps wasn't recognized.
I'm not sure about giving a chimpanzee Xanax. I wouldn't give a human Xanax because it's addictive. What sort of tea did Conklin give the Chimp? There are herbal teas that she could have used. I'm not a vet so I can't say what the animal's reaction to Xanax would have been. I know a vet who is studying the affect of herbs on animals. She thinks this is the wave of the future. I think she's right. Animals in the wild eat all sorts of herbs and grasses which help them when they're sick.

As far as wearing her hair differently, that is a very real possibility. When I put a band around my hair to wash my face my second parrot goes nuts. He wants to get out of his cage and come get me. I'm positive it's not to kiss me. He's looking for blood. As soon as I take off the band he calms down a bit.
  • The chimpanzee was well-known around Stamford because he rode around in trucks belonging to the towing company operated by his owners.
Riding in trucks is more of a human activity not necessarily one for an animal. I don't think it hurt this chimpanzee to go around in a truck but that is not the normal life for a Chimp.
  • Police have dealt with him in the past, including an incident in 2003 when he escaped from his owners' vehicle in downtown Stamford for two hours. Officers used cookies, macadamia treats and ice cream in an attempt to lure him, but subdued him only after he became too tired to resist.
Cookies, macadamia treats, and ice cream are not the normal diet for a Chimpanzee. I know I give my parrot too many things that are not what she should be eating. I need to change that but there is no way a cookie or ice cream or macadamia treat is good for any wild animal.
  • At the time of the 2003 incident, police said the Herolds told them the chimpanzee was toilet trained, dressed himself, took his own bath, ate at the table and drank wine from a stemmed glass. He also brushed his teeth using a Water Pik, logged onto the computer to look at pictures, and watched television using the remote control, police said.
It sounds funny and nice to have a wild animal do all these things but this is not what a normal wild chimpanzee does every day. This is insane to have wild animals taken out of their own habitat and treated like a human being. The people who raise them think they are their children. They really love the animal. I know they do. They would never do anything to harm it.
  • When he was younger, Travis appeared on TV commercials for Old Navy and Coca-Cola, made an appearance on the "Maury Povich Show" and took part in a television pilot, according to a 2003 story in The Advocate newspaper of Stamford.
I know the people who took part in these television programs thought it was cute to have a Chimpanzee do all these things. They were just doing their job or making money.
  • "He's been raised almost like a child by this family," Conklin said Monday. "He rides in a car every day, he opens doors, he's a very unique animal in that aspect. We have no indication of what provoked this behavior at all."
The reason these people don't know what provoked this behavior is because they were thinking of this Chimpanzee as a human and not a wild animal. Yes, they are very smart, loving, fun, and do have many human traits. One fact remains, they are wild animals who belong with other wild animals of their kind. They need to breed, to be in their own family, and be in the wild or something as close to the wild as possible.

I hate to have my birds in a cage. They are left with the door open when possible. They are taken outside as much as possible to see and feel the out of doors. I want to have a place for them outside. They love it outside. It makes me sick to have them cooped up in this house all winter. Tomorrow and the next day will be warm enough to take them outside.

I feel sure this Chimpanzee would have loved to be outside with his own kind playing and romping about in the free open air being wild.

I don't hate the owners of wild animals because I am one. I was given my two parrots free. I would never have bought a parrot. First, because I didn't have the money and second, because the thought would never have occurred to me. You ask how did we end up with two parrots given to us free?

The story goes like this. My husband's cousin asked us to keep their parrot when it was very small, before it's feathers came in. His wife couldn't take care of the bird at that time. We kept the parrot for about three months. The bird got attached to me and so the cousin gave us the parrot. After years with the bird I knew it needed another bird to keep it company. It wanted a mate. We looked and looked for a mate for the bird. Nothing came available that would have been a good mate for her. Then one day we got a call from the bird club we belong to and they said that someone was wanting to get rid of their bird. We went to see it and they wanted us to take it home right then. We took the bird home and never heard from the owner again. I called the owner myself and told them it was doing fine. Now we have two parrots who were given to us free.

The second bird is a screamer. He has finally stopped screaming so much but he is not a mate for the first bird. It took him about three years to stop screaming so much. I think it was how I was reacting to him when he screamed and how his previous owner treated him when he screamed that kept it going for so long. Birds are conditioned by their environment and it's hard to change that conditioning. Birds love drama and if you react to something they do they will continue to do it. F O R E V E R. Or nearly forever. At least these two parrots keep each other company when I leave the house for a few hours. I hear them making noises to each other but they haven't fallen in love.

Actually my birdie betrayal is not really betrayal because these animals love differently than humans love. Birds will kill their own babies sometimes. I've seen cats kill baby kittens too. I think it was a wild male cat that killed a litter of kittens and not the mother cat. I think the wild male cat wanted the female cat to come back into heat so he killed the kittens. I could be wrong because I wasn't there. I just found the kittens dead in the morning. They had been born in the barn and there is were I found them dead after only living a few days. They were the most beautiful kittens. Made me sick.

I don't think all wild animals should be returned to the wild after being in captivity for years. I do think they need to be given places in the wild outdoors to enjoy and not kept inside a house or a cage all their lives. I've seen large birds kept in tiny cages and I don't understand how people can do that to a beautiful wild animal. I just wish people would realize that just because an animal is trained that doesn't mean it's not wild. They will resort to their wild nature when they are afraid or threatened.

When I heard about the woman who had her face torn off by the Chimpanzee I wondered if the Chimpanzee was not protecting his owner. If he was drugged it is no wonder things went very wrong. I think this animal should have been where it could have run wild and free every day of it's life in a large yard with other animals like it. It may have needed to mate with another Chimpanzee. Every year parrots go through a hormonal change that causes them to go nuts. They try to bite and can even try to kill anyone who gets between them and the person or bird they love. It's just instinct. They can't help it. No amount of punishment or loving will change this season of hormonal change. You can mark it on your calender because it will happen at the same time every year.