Do you have a pet?

Here’s my Nelly


Beautiful! I have a friend with a chocolate lab named Nelly as well.

Beautiful coat she has.

Yup, we have two bichon frises.

Until recent years we also had parrots.


Nelly is my swimming buddy :blush:


What breed of parrot? And for how many years? Did you just stop once they’d passed on, or did you get someone to adopt them? Some breeds can live for almost as long as a human!


I’ve never owned a pet outright. We’ve had them in our family for years, growing up mostly with cats. We had a dog for a few years, but it was a neurotic Shetland sheepdog (mini Collie-like) that was an “accessory” to my mother remarrying. It wasn’t very friendly to kids. Years later, I came to befriend people with dogs and I love them. They seem to love me back. They can be such great animals.

My first exposure to a large parrot was an African Grey called Spaulding. A good friend of mine in California had him for about 5 years, but then he had trouble with him and gave him up for adoption. It was a fascinating bird, but he didn’t have much of a vocabulary.

The next round, most recently. I live with 3 Eclectus parrots, which belong to my housemate. She started with two, a mated pair, who successfully birthed a baby male. He’s now 4 years old and has a fairly large vocabulary. But what’s most remarkable about him is his ability to alter intonation of words. Even just “hello,” he can say about 8 different ways. He loves to ring like a telephone. So I found a video of that particular brand where a person replayed all of the ringtones, then extracted the audio. I captured the one he loves, modified it so I’ve got 4 versions (different pitches). And I play ring with him using my phone, playing back the MP3 files. The father male is the best of the bunch, in terms of just demeanor and friendliness. So well behaved for the most part. Birds are fascinating animals when they’re capable of speech. Yet… what a chore for upkeep!


This is Bowie. She passed in March after a short battle with cancer. We had dogs growing up but she was the first dog I could call ‘mine’. Sweetest girl.


No pets in my home but I love the ones who live at various family homes. This is a lady named Milo. My baby nieces call her ‘carpet’ lol




We’ve owned Quakers, Mutated Black Masks, Parrotlets (the world’s smallest parrot), Sun Conure….

The whole journey began when my wife and I were in college and dating. One day in 2001, she called and asked, “Hey babe, do you want a bird?” Without hesitation, I replied, “Hell yes, I want a bird!” I was unaware of the commitment it entailed. Having a pet parrot in a college apartment was no small feat. The bird would scream all day, so we decided to get it a friend—another parrot, because that obviously made sense for college students. The second one was a baby, which we had to hand-feed every few hours. The constant trips between campus and the apartment amid classes were especially taxing when we were already sleep-deprived.

Smart birds require a lot of work. They need abundant attention to stay mentally and physically healthy. We would give them at least 3 hours of “off-cage” playtime daily. They thrive on routine, requiring consistent bedtime and wake-up times.

Maintaining clean cages felt like a full-time job, and traveling was always a challenge. We couldn’t bear to leave them alone for days, so we’d arrange for a sitter.

Living in south Louisiana, we faced numerous evacuations due to hurricanes. Transporting our menagerie northward felt like running a traveling circus.

The two main parrots we got during college lived full lives, passing away only in the last few years. We were in our early 20s when we got them, and they were with us into our 40s.

We’re done with parrots now. Having dogs and a child is enough for us at the moment.