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Enrichment? Isn’t that what they do to flour?

Rebecca K. O'Connor | Aug 13, 2007


So why does it matter that Tao won't play with toys? Sometimes we just don't know what we don't know. That goes for animals too. You can give a parrot all the toys in the world, but if he doesn't know the joy of finding buried treasure, ripping up paper, or peeling pine into tiny chips then the toys are just decoration. And what is it they say...idle hands are the devils playground? A parrot with nothing to do may find behaviors we feel are inappropriate with which to occupy their time instead...screaming and plucking for instance.

Parrots, dogs, cats, boyfriends all need enrichment, mental stimulation that gives them the opportunity to use their senses and be the animals that they are. For parrots this means foraging and exploring with their beak. For dogs it might mean using their nose to discover new exciting things in their world. Boyfriends are more complicated, but a sporting event seems to do. Me? I'm easy. Put me in front of a busy bird feeder with a bottle of beer and you won't hear a peep out of me all day. If Tao learned to explore, engage in and destroy most anything in his cage, I doubt anyone would hear a peep out of him either.