We have these two little pets that we wouldn’t take anything for. We didn’t really think about getting a bird when we got Baby Bird. Our little female cockatiel had gotten egg bound and died after we had her for almost 10 years and we were so attached to her that we had decided to not get another one. When we first got her we left her cage in one place and after several months, we wanted to re-arrange the room and we turned her cage to face a different direction. It took her 3 days to adjust to that quarter turn.
After she died, my sister went to buy herself a little baby cockatiel and she told her daughter that she couldn’t buy herself one without getting us one…so that’s how we came to have Baby Bird. He was only 3 months old when we got him. They are social birds so we put his cage in the dining room so he would have a central place and could see in several directions. We decided that since the other one had trouble getting used to being changed around…that whenever we’d go into another room, we would just take him in his cage with us. (Sad mistake!) We were training him without realizing we were doing so. Also, when we are getting ready to eat a meal he sits in his cage and hollers until we get to the table…then he will start eating his food. He won’t eat until we get seated at the table.
Our little dog is the one that was about weaning size when it was dropped off on our block. Bobby carried her off for two days and put her down near the house we thought she came from….but the third day when she came back, she was asleep when he started to pick her up to carry her down the street.. She was startled and bit him on the hand. We called the state health department and they said to keep her up for ten days to check whether she had rabies. We didn’t want a dog…we had no place to keep a dog…but when that time was up we were smitten! We were too attached to give her away.
Her training took on this form: She can sit or stand on command and turn around while standing in order to get a treat. We also trained her to jump through a loop. But the main way she is trained: When we are just going outside to see her in her pen, we don’t say anything until she comes out of her doghouse and we usually take her treats, or are going to change her water or feed her. When we are going somewhere and she hears us going out the door and saying: “Be a good little dog, Gabby.”…she knows we are just leaving and she doesn’t have to come out in the cold or heat, whichever the case may be. It is purely amazing how you can train these little animals.
Children are amazing too. They are like little sponges soaking up and learning everything in their environment, especially examples people set. What a great responsibility parents have! And…sometimes like our little bird, we are training them when we are not aware of it. When we are not as noble as we should be, our children are watching. When we mis-represent the truth in order to make ourselves look better…our children are watching. When they see us putting God second…or third or maybe not at all…they are watching. What we tell them is not nearly as forceful and effective….as what we are showing them by our example. Blessed are those parents…who realize this when their children are small. And how very blessed are their children. -Edna L Ingram, 08/2008 “…Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come…” -David, in Psalm 71:18