How Do I Care for a Baby Macaw?

Amber Eberle

Macaws are intelligent, brightly colored birds that many people choose to keep as pets. These birds are lively and entertaining, but, for the best behavior, macaws should be socialized and trained from a young age. A baby macaw requires a cage, as well as toys to chew on in order to entertain itself and keep its beak healthy. For the best health, a baby macaw should be fed a varied diet that contains many vitamins and nutrients. After bringing a new macaw home, it should be taken to a veterinarian for a thorough check-up.

Macaws are intelligent, brightly colored birds that many people choose to keep as pets.
Macaws are intelligent, brightly colored birds that many people choose to keep as pets.

A baby macaw needs veterinary care. Ideally, the vet should be trained and experienced in avian care. Most breeders recommend that a health check-up should be performed within the first 24 hours of bringing a new macaw home. Birds like macaws rarely show that they are experiencing health problems, but a vet is often able, through a thorough physical examination, to determine if the bird is healthy.

Red-fronted macaws are highly sought after as pets.
Red-fronted macaws are highly sought after as pets.

Before bringing home a baby macaw, it should have a cage in the new owner's home. This enclosure should be large enough for the bird to spread its wings without obstruction. Macaws typically grow to be quite large, so it is recommended that an owner buy the largest possible cage he can afford, and has room for, in order to prevent having to purchase new cages as the bird grows. The bottom of the cage should be lined with a soft material, as baby macaws may fall to the bottom of the cage until they get used to standing on a perch. Toys made for macaws should be placed in the cage for the bird to play with and chew on.

A baby macaw should be fed fresh fruits and vegetables on a daily basis.
A baby macaw should be fed fresh fruits and vegetables on a daily basis.

A baby macaw must be fed a healthy diet, made up of a variety of foods. Fresh fruits and vegetables should be offered daily, as well as a mixture of nuts and seeds. While the macaw is a baby, these nuts should be cracked and the shell should be removed, until the bird has learned to do it on its own. Small amounts of meat, such as cooked chicken, can also be fed to a macaw. The water in a baby macaw's cage should be changed daily.

In the wild, macaws are social animals that live in flocks. As a pet, a bird considers its human owners to be part of its flock, or family. Everyone in a household should spend time holding and playing with a baby macaw in order for it to become well socialized. Macaws, whether young or adult, require a lot of attention and owners should plan on spending several hours a day playing with and caring for their pets.

Macaws prefer to eat fruit and nuts.
Macaws prefer to eat fruit and nuts.

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