Bringing your new little buddy home is an exciting time for you, but a potentially stressful, scary and dangerous time for your budgie. Luckily, following a few basic guidelines can make traveling with your feathered friend for the first time a less intimidating experience for both of you.
The Car Ride
Install soft, rope-like perches in the cage or travel carrier. Your budgie may have a hard time holding onto harder perches with the motion of the car, which could result in fear or a fall.
Place your new budgie in his cage or travel carrier. Talk in a soothing voice to your new little friend while placing him in the cage. A soothing voice will help your parakeet remain calm and feel your love.
Strap the cage or carrier securely in the back seat of your car using the safety belt or a special harness. If you must put your parakeet up front with you, make sure the passenger-side airbag is turned off, as it could crush the cage. Resist putting your budgie on the floor of your car to prevent fumes from reaching your budgie.
Close all doors of the cage securely with twist ties or some other type of device. An open door could mean the perfect escape for a frightened parakeet.
Roll up the windows in your car or leave them only slightly cracked. Your little friend is extremely sensitive to drafts!
Cover the cage almost completely with a light-colored sheet, blanket or towel, but don't make the cage completely dark. Your little guy could become very frightened and stressed out with the view from the outside, and the cover can help protect your birdie from the elements. A dark cage could create another scary environment and the chance of a fall. If your car is not overly hot or cold, however, your budgie may benefit from being able to see you during the ride.
First Days at Home
Place your new friend's cage in a room where you and your bird can interact daily and frequently, although an extremely busy room may stress your friend out.
Talk to your budgie several times a day for 10 or so minutes. Use a friendly, soothing voice, much like you would with a baby. This will help your little guy understand you are a friend and your parakeet will get used to the interaction.
Keep loud noises to a minimum -- including the television or stereo system. If you regularly watch loud movies or are prone to shouting at the TV during a game, consider putting your budgie's cage in a quieter room that you frequent.
Allow your new bird to observe you for a few days. At first your buddy will probably hang out on the floor of his cage, unsure of what's going on or what to think. After a few days, however, your little guy should be chirping and singing while playing with any toys in its cage.
With a professional background in gardening, landscapes, pests and natural ecosystems, Jasey Kelly has been sharing her knowledge through writing since 2009 and has served as an expert writer in these fields. Kelly's background also includes childcare, and animal rescue and care.