How To Feed and Care for a Yellow Canary

When it comes to different types of pet birds, there's no doubt that canaries are one of the best. Canary birds make excellent pets for the right type of person. These small, beautiful birds are perfect pets for someone that wants a companion, without some of the work that comes with other more social birds. Unlike parrots, these birds will happily mind their own business and do not seek significant interaction with their human owners.

Whether you have or planning to adopt a yellow canary or one of a different color, here's how to feed and care for your pet!

Yellow Canary Care Basics

First, before getting into specifics about food, medicine, and so on, all canary owners must get the basics correct. Yellow canaries do well with the same temperatures that humans enjoy. Try to keep the room temperatures below 80 degrees Fahrenheit, though, as canaries do not like the extreme heat. When it comes to your bird's hygiene, make sure that you clean their cage, toys, and other things regularly. 

Canaries are relatively active birds, so you should have a flight habitat (cage) at least two feet in each dimension (two feet wide, two feet tall, and two feet deep). The larger you can make the home for your domestic canary, the better!

Canary pets also do not do well when they share housing with other canaries. Some people erroneously think that it provides some socialization that they can't get from their owners. However, canaries together may get into fights, and the results can be deadly.

However, if you do house canaries together for breeding, please note that canaries have different personalities in this regard. Some want to breed, while others become attached to their mate. Keep this in mind as you may find it challenging to separate the canaries apart once you bring them together! 

Feeding Your Domestic Canary

Like many birds, canaries can have a wide variety of foods. However, just because they can ingest multiple types of food doesn't mean that they should. 

Most of the diet (say 70% or more) should consist of specially formulated canary pellets. Certain canary species benefit from having a wider variety of nutrition. However, yellow canaries do very well when they have mostly food pellets. Feeding baby birds can also be different from adult birds.

If you're giving your canary other foods, please share small amounts of vegetables, fruit, or seeds with them. These foods should be more sparing and only provided reasonably sparingly. Canaries tend to enjoy greens like "broccoli, romaine, lettuce, and kale," with "one to two tablespoons per day [being] plenty." For fruits, consider apples, bananas, strawberries, and blueberries.

Please note that some common human foods are poisonous to birds. Do not feed your bird avocado. Avocados contain a chemical called persin. This chemical does nothing in humans, but it is toxic to birds. Your feathered friend can become very sick or even die from consuming avocado, so keep this and anything with avocado in it away from your bird.

Fruit seeds, chocolates, and any foods or drinks with caffeine are also poisonous for birds. So, while you might love your morning cup of coffee, do not share your cup with your bird.

Yellow Canary Health

Suppose you want your canary to reach the maximum canary lifespan (typically 15 years is the most any canary bird will live). In that case, you'll need to make sure you pay attention to the signs that your canary is in good health and also the ones that indicate something is going wrong.

You need to make sure that your pet bird is healthy and happy at all times. Healthy canaries are active, friendly, and very alert. They love to exercise and have fun. They eat and drink regularly, have bright eyes, and don't have any difficulty breathing. Their tails should be clean and dry, and the feathers will look smooth and well-groomed. In short, your bird will look well-kept. They won't look "messy."

However, canaries can and will have health problems. If you see your yellow canary acting differently or showing physical symptoms of poor health, please take your bird to the vet as soon as possible. You should take your bird in quickly if you see any of the following signs:

  • soiled feathers
  • swelling of the beak
  • runny or discolored stools
  • your bird favors one foot
  • significant loss of appetite

Any of these symptoms could be a warning of a much more severe medical condition. Be safe, rather than sorry, and take your bird to the vet!

A Word on Canary Personalities

As mentioned earlier, canaries tend not to require significant amounts of human interaction. They tend to be primarily solitary species, and that includes their humans. 

Therefore, if you're looking for a cuddly bird or a feathered friend that you can get to perch on your finger, a canary is likely not for you. That's not to say that having this bird do that is impossible. Instead, it's more comment on how unlikely it is. Canaries are wonderful and these animals make for the perfect first pet bird for the right people.

No matter what, do not force your yellow canary to engage in any social interaction that he or she does not want. Doing so will only stress your bird out and give them negative feelings toward you!

The Yellow Canary Is a Beautiful Pet

Whether you already have a yellow canary or are planning to get one in the future, it is a remarkably beautiful pet. These birds' yellow coloring, singing, and activity make canaries some of the best pet birds someone could ever have. These birds are also highly intelligent!

You really cannot go wrong with a yellow canary, whether you're an experienced bird enthusiast or someone new to owning birds! These birds are simply one of the best small pet birds out there

What is a canary?

Canaries are popular birds that have multiple pop culture references. They are small songbirds that come from the finch family. As such, they are comparatively little birds that make excellent pets.

How long do canaries live?

For birds, canaries have a relatively short lifespan, unfortunately. Most canaries live for approximately ten years. A canary might live up to 15 years with the right conditions, but that's a very long life.

Are canaries good pets?

Yes, they are - for the right type of person, that is. Canaries are perfect for someone in a quiet setting who wants a small bird as a companion. They tend to be a little more reserved, so they won't likely be perching on your finger. They can, but that's an exception, rather than the rule!

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Written by Leo Roux

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