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To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

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Doodlebug
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To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:01 am

Hi guys. I know y'all must be pretty sick of hearing about my troubles but would like your opinions on using a glove if your IRN are scared/aggressive towards your hands.

I really didn't want to go down this route as it kinda defeats the object of getting him used to my hands. But I'm starting to think he will never get used to them :cry:

For now, all I want is for him to come to me (which he does) and spend time without seeing what I taste like. Surely he must know if he likes the taste of me by now without having to keep coming back for another try?

I would only wear one, the other I would want to use to hand him stuff, treats, toys etc.

I also am worrying about Christmas. My house is small, and where I have Dudes cage, is where the tree normally goes. There is no other room to put his cage in the living room and I can't say to my partner and kids 'ok there's going to be no tree this year!' I think Dudes will go crazy if I put him in another room, especially as I have been trying to introduce him to other rooms but he flies away each time I try. My dining room has plenty of room, which is next to the living room only separated by a hall, do you think I ought to bite the bullet and put the cage and playstand in there? I am terrified the change will lead to plucking or a backward step in trusting me.

As ever I am a total wreck of a parront! I'm sure people will read this and have a right laugh at me :oops:
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AlphaWolf » Thu Nov 21, 2013 11:55 am

Hello Doodlebug,
I really feel wretched hearing about Dudes, but please don't loose hope. It could be a late bluffing :?: :?: But Dudes is nothing like Aero, if you think you a wreck then don't look at me. Yesterday I tried just to change his toy and he freaked out so hard that he cut himself, again. I felt so sad, and ok, cried a little, but that's life? How old is Dudes now, maybe it could be a late-bluffing stage. Sorry for being rotten help. May Dudes improve!
"Live with parrots and you learn to panic"

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Thu Nov 21, 2013 12:23 pm

Thanks Alpha :) He is nearly 8 months old now, I'm at the end of my tether trying to figure out whats wrong.

Take heart, accidents do happen. Just the other day I shut Dudes poor little foot in his cage door. I was like 'why is he making such an awful racket?' He was swearing like crazy. Then I realised his foot was stuck in the door. I felt terrible and nearly called Childline myself. (For all those outside the UK Childline is a number kids can call if they need to talk to someone about being mistreated)

Anyway he probably has taken even more of a dislike to me now! But he's ok.
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Thu Nov 21, 2013 2:46 pm

Hallo Doodlebugs,
I would recomend that you do not use a glove but try and get Dudes to accept a neck scratch, when l first got Billy she bared her teeth when l tried to approach her but gradually she allowed me to scratch her neck. Contact between you and Dudes should be progressive and day at a time, slowly gain Dudes trust. Today Billy bit me three tiems but then l will not take no for an answer. But when she does bite and it hurts l walk out of the room, she hates this and tries very hard to do what l want after l come back. You could put the tree on the cage but it would be better just outside the window.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Thu Nov 21, 2013 4:22 pm

I'm sorry, Loo.

I don't think he will have a nervous breakdown if you move his cage, he might even take to it. Both my birds have been when we rearranged things so we could relocate their cages. I bet he'll be so excited to have a Christmas tree to destroy :wink:

I don't know about gloves, I am inclined to think that anything that makes it possible for you to work with doodes could be worth considering.... but I'm only saying that because I am confident in you and know you will still respect what he is telling you and not use them as protection to yourself so you can handle him badly (just in case anyone has any doubt about my feelings about gloves in general....). But I don't know that it will improve the situation in the longterm. ...

Can you remember what happened the first time he bit your hand? It seems to have turned into his way of interacting now.
I was feeding my little girl (I think her name is actually sapphire moonstone now) while she was sitting on my hand the other day and ran out of treats, she started nuzzling around my hand trying to beak my fingers apart to find more treats. I felt like it could have easily escalted into biting at that point, luckily she flew off to terrorise Nila instead. ... That was probably not helpful. .... just wondering if there is any chance he has an expectation of your hands that you might not be meeting in his eyes?

Sorry I have no useful suggestions :cry:

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:57 am

Hi guys and thanks for your replies.

Claire he first bit me when I was holding the step up stick upto the cage door when he was coming out. He rushed up the stick to bite me lol, and he's done it ever since when he sees skin. He's absolutely fine on me if theres no skin he can see. I 'think' hes becomming a bit kinder towards me slowly now, he isn't rushing up purposefully to bite but he will if its very near him. He landed on my head on Sunday, which he has never done before. He did try and bite because I felt his head rush down and his beak connected with my head but he could gain no purchase on me so I just laughed at him!

Sunday I also changed all his cage around, and his playstand just to make things interesting for him and to stop the territorial thing. He kept landing on me while I was doing this, and also onto the cage. I am aware they can get quite aggressive over their things so was wary but he just seemed interested on what I was doing. He loves playing on my lap and I recently got a new iPhone case so let him have my old one to chew on. He loves it. He ALMOST forgot himself earlier today and was on my knee all fluffy and I think he was about to either start preening or settle down for a power nap, but then thought better of it and flew off to do it on his stand instead.

Do you think these are all good signs? I do hope so :P
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AlphaWolf » Mon Nov 25, 2013 12:48 pm

Hi Doodlebug,
You definitely have improvements coming your way. Ok I have composed a theory. It is my belief that Doodlebug is going through a bluffing stage. Why? Because I recently read an article that IRNs bluff from 1 year old and downwards. Also there has been case of multiple bluffing in wild IRNs. So maybe doodlebug is going through a bluffing stage. My two cents worth!
"Live with parrots and you learn to panic"

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:34 pm

You are making good progress Doodlebug with Dudes, keep on but with out gloves, Billie flies to to the back of my chair and then slides down onto my shoulder and l put my hand up and she climbs on and l lower her to my lap and she accepts a neck scratch she is becoming very trusitng as l can cup my hand around her head and she will allow me to stoked her under her wing but after awhile she grows bored of this and wants to play with my fingers and l give her feet a gentle tug. She might have a mothering instinct when she plays with my fingers as she is bobbing up and down and l think she is keeping her chicks amused or worse feeding them who knows?
I saw a doodlebug when l was a kid it is a self propelled flying bomb.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:03 am

Hi everyone, sorry to bump this. I have so far been resisting the glove thing. As I said he will sit on my arm with sleeves, but the other day he bit through the sleeves. So its one step forward and three backwards still at the moment.

In a few days I am going to transfer his cage into the dining room to make way for the Christmas tree in the lounge. I'm thinking of moving it whilst he is still in the cage because otherwise he won't leave the room of his own accord.

Could I have some advise as to how to make things ok for him during this time? This is what I'm thinking: Move him into dining room. Keep him in the cage for a day to get him used to his surroundings. Move his play stand and all his familiat things in there too, hang a spiral perch from the light fitting (thats where one is in the lounge at the moment) and open his cage and offer treats.

I know I am probably worrying about nothing, just as I did when I changed his cage to a larger one! But I am panicking hearing about birds that start plucking etc when their surroundings change... :|
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Tue Dec 03, 2013 4:07 pm

The Christmas tree would be a lot happier in the dinning room, l have never used a step up stick on Billie, if you put hand towards Dudes watch his eyes and is he lifts a foot it means he is willing to step up. You will get bitten, tell Dudes how much it hurts make him feel sorry, but remember you cannot rush things.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AlphaWolf » Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:22 pm

I also am worrying about Christmas. My house is small, and where I have Dudes cage, is where the tree normally goes. There is no other room to put his cage in the living room and I can't say to my partner and kids 'ok there's going to be no tree this year!' I think Dudes will go crazy if I put him in another room, especially as I have been trying to introduce him to other rooms but he flies away each time I try. My dining room has plenty of room, which is next to the living room only separated by a hall, do you think I ought to bite the bullet and put the cage and playstand in there? I am terrified the change will lead to plucking or a backward step in trusting me"


AJPeter please read this.
"Live with parrots and you learn to panic"

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by ellieelectrons » Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:24 pm

Would you consider a live tree that he can sit on as your Christmas tree with birdy safe/chewable decorations?

Ellie.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:27 am

Thats a really nice idea, do you think real trees have been treated with pesticides etc?
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Wed Dec 04, 2013 3:52 pm

Okay AlphaWolf read it now what?
But to come back to Duddlebug and Dudes, when you move the cage sit with Doodlebug best lower than he is and visit him regularly in his new situation. I do not think he will he will pluck his feathers unless you ignore him.
Billie rides around on my shoulder in all the rooms in my flat even in the toilet, l tell her "No peeking" I did notice the other day after sitting down as l came out she had a clothes peg on her nose!
This morning Billie was an absolute nuisance while l played the organ, it got to bad l had to lock her in the cage, but after asking nicely and trying to lever her in with the upper perch which she bit and was very rough with it l; was glad it was not my arm. I tried a new tactic, l closed the top and after sweet talking her l invited her to step on my hand and she did so quickly l put my hand in her cage and she stepped off onto a perch. So l closed the front door and got on with playing, it took her about five minutes to realize that l had locked her in and she asked nicely if she could come out and l said "No!" and after that we both got on with our own thing.
Last week Billie would not step up onto my arm and when l pressed her she bit my arm. I whimpered and l milked it, she looked concerned, and when l offered my hand she stepped up. Do not be afraid of the bite, yes it hurts and you can let Dudes know maybe he will moderate his behaviour, but do try leaving the room each time he bites, he loves you really.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by ellieelectrons » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:49 pm

Doodlebug wrote:Thats a really nice idea, do you think real trees have been treated with pesticides etc?
I use real tree branches with my birds any way. I am planning to see if I can get a suitable one from a nursery and will have that discussion with them about pesticides. I usually wash tree products in the shower and I'm happy with that. You can also by bird antiseptic sprays - I think Claire had one of those?

Ellie.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by ellieelectrons » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:06 pm

I've joined "the parrot's workshop" on Facebook and they've had a few people posting ideas for Christmas trees for birds. I'm going to attempt to embed the photos here, not sure if it will work:
Image
This was posted by T. Michiels

Image
This was posted by C. Babcock Moesley

Image
This was posted by T. Michiels
This poster said that this last one is from Martha Stewart's site. It's not necessarily birdy friendly but you could make it that way and you could hide treats in it, have perches sticking out from it to perch on, etc.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheParrotsWorkshop/

Ellie.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by ellieelectrons » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:11 pm

I can see the above photos. Can someone let me know if you can see them too? I may only be able to view them because I'm logged into facebook?

Ellie.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:44 pm

I can see them!
Great ideas, but I think kids would be disappointed with having no lights or tinsel on the tree.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by pattiB » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:44 pm

Here is something I wonder if you've seen. I have one in a drawer, hopefully not ever needing to use it. BUT, I thought it was a great idea. It might help? I hope?
http://www.4zbirds.com/buddyperch.html

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Little Buttercup » Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:18 pm

Ellie those trees look wonderful. Especially the one made out of twigs and branches. But how on earth would you clean it up after birdie plays with it!?

And is the third one made of PVC piping?

Ash

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Thu Dec 05, 2013 10:42 am

ellieelectrons wrote:I can see the above photos. Can someone let me know if you can see them too? I may only be able to view them because I'm logged into facebook?

Ellie.
I can see them too, how cool are they?! I would never have thought of doing anything like that but seeing them now it makes perfect sense and includes our fids to join in the with the festivies. Heck, theres usually a load of mess everywhere this time of year, a bit more won't hurt eh.
pattiB wrote:Here is something I wonder if you've seen. I have one in a drawer, hopefully not ever needing to use it. BUT, I thought it was a great idea. It might help? I hope?
http://www.4zbirds.com/buddyperch.html
Oh.My.God! I so need one of those.com! Thanks for drawing my attention to these Patti, I'm going to ask my man that has made Dudes playstands and T stands and perches and everything to knock me up one of these :D

I will hold Dudes on my hand like some weird short green sword with a beak for a tip, but my weapon of choice will be far FAAAR deadlier muhahaha!!

On a more serious note, I hope you never have to use yours Patti, long may it stay in the drawer :)
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Thu Dec 05, 2013 2:45 pm

I saw them too but what l need right now are some woolly bed socks for Billie and a Knight's metal helmet for me. See Parrot speak.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:46 pm

Loo, I was just reading this: http://larajoseph.wordpress.com/2012/06 ... h-nipping/
First part may be useful to you.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Mon Dec 09, 2013 9:49 am

Claire that link is awesome. It makes a lot of sense to me :) I wasn't sure what the term 'earthquake' meant but having read further on, it seems that method isn't favoured anyway. I know I definately need to start training him again, I target trained out of the cage but then he started getting aggressive so I must admit I gave him some 'him' time. I'd love to do the flight games, maybe I out to reinforce my skin with something underneath my sleeves so he can't see it?

Reading it I got a little frustrated as it seems as easy as pie for some people just to say 'I rewarded him for even putting his foot up before he stepped onto my hand'-well Doodlebug has never put his foot up! If I went near him with my hand, or even sometimes arm, he goes for it :cry: So rather than force the issue I have left it. Maybe he has trained me to leave him alone, but whats the alternative?

Does the bird whisperer have any tips? I know all birds are very much different to one another and they all have different temperaments, but I'd literally do ANYTHING to get Dudes to the stage Sapphire is at, you are such a natural :)
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Mon Dec 09, 2013 11:12 am

I think "earthquake" may mean a very little jiggle of the arm while the bird is there. It throws them a slightly off balance (I'd call it more of a "ripple" than an "earthquake"...) and distracts them from whatever you didn't want.

I would not suggest this method be used much, and ONLY with a bird who is already pretty comfortable on the arm/hand. If the bird is not solidly comfortable on you, this method would be likely to have them doubting that you are a safe place to be. It is a negative method.

I do use this method *once in a blue moon* if Rocky looks like he's going to get carried away with beaking my arm. Rocky frequently nibbles me a little bit. It isn't painful, so I let him. After all, his beak is his main way of checking things out. (I don't stop my dogs from licking me either.) I feel like he's expressing his birdiness, so no harm done. Sometimes, however, he will get a bit extra-focussed on this, and then he starts hurting me. I really think he just gets "into" it. If I let him continue, he really will carefully excise a little chunk of my flesh and, I swear to god, eat it. It really doesn't seem to be anything aggressive or negative. So, when that happens, I give him a little wobble and a toy or a job to do, unless he takes me by surprise. If he does take me completely by surprise with a biggish bite, I do the unthinkable. (This is a big confession here, folks...) That is, if he lands a big, painful bite out of the blue, I swiftly raise my hand to about the level of my ear. The result is part the bird flying off and part me giving him a toss to get him started. It's more about getting him the heck off me than it is about a conversation, at that point, but it *is* actually punishment.

Why did I just tell you about my use of positive punishment? I don't want to look like I'm advocating punishment. However, I do want to illustrate that the same action can have different effect depending on the intensity and the individuals involved. If you use the "earthquake" sensitively, in a confident bird, I believe it can come across in a similar way as one person tapping another on the shoulder to get their attention. Taken to a more extreme level, the "toss" I described, might come across more like a person grabbing the other one's shoulder and shoving them away. In the human world, one of these actions is acceptable, even among strangers, and the other is pretty much not.

I just wanted to give you my impression of the "earthquake".
-MissK

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Mon Dec 09, 2013 3:23 pm

Sorry for leading you guys astray, I was referring to the first part of the answer, not recommending the earthquake thing!!!!!!!

I haven't tried the earthquake thing. Sapphire seems to have worked out how to be soft with her beak when she's playing with me.
I haven't had to deal with unjustified biting or beaking with either bird, I pull away and apologise if I have put my hand in their space without permission and got bitten or threatened. My situation is vastly different from yours though.

I have noticed in Sapphires agressive interactions with other birds, she does "pick" on them more if they back down. She still tries it on with Janey too, even though it ends badly for her every time.

The problem with recommending any kind of positive punishment, is there are so ways that it can end up doing totally detrimental if it is used incorrectly. Say Sapphire is on my arm and slipping, she will use her beak to pull herself into a better position, if I don't realise that she is just trying to regain her balance and I start shaking my hand around she is going to hold on tighter, she could get scared, defensive. Basically, if I use positive punishment in the wrong way I will create a problem. This is why I don't recommend it.

I really think stepping the bird up for short periods is a good idea, like that author suggests. Target training also. I like simple tricks like turn around, fetch or waving to you. I don't know how your training relationship is though.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Mon Dec 09, 2013 3:54 pm

Could l throw my tuppence in for what it is worth about stepping up, l show Billie my hand or arm about 6 inches from her if she ignores me l go away and come back to try again then she might lift her foot so l know l can go closer without getting bitten. but what works for one mught not work with another.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:24 pm

I agree.
I'm not trying to recommend positive punishment, more explain what the "earthquake" is about.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:32 am

Thanks for the explanation MissK.

I wonder if anyone would give me a few simple starter things that I could use on Dudes that don't really involve touching? I don't mind trying the flight games however, but how to get him to fly from my arm back to the stand once he has landed on me? Without biting I hope lol!

I tried the turnaround awhile ago but he couldn't quite get the hang of it, I first used the target stick, then a lure, it was awkward getting him to follow it and he kept lunging at me which wasn't really helpful.
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Tue Dec 10, 2013 1:15 pm

Fetch! Teach him to take a toy and drop it in a container. Also his mouth will be full :mrgreen:

I don't know if I teach anything the right way and last time I tried to explain how I taught a trick I confused everyone! But I will try:
To get Sapphire to fly to a stand, I hold her in stepping range of the perch and tap the perch once after saying the cue. She steps on to the perch and is praised and rewarded. Repeat a few times. Then I increase the distance so she has to make a little flight to it.
I have found with both of birds that, as we practice and increase the distance, pointing instead of touching the perch starts to work.
It's basically a half ....ed way of teaching target training. I haven't taught proper target training, because I prefer to be able to get the bird where I want by pointing and I refine it later, if I need to. Needless to say, both my bird listen to visual cues, rather than what I say.

If I point to an object that is hard to land on, like the slippery bench, Sapphire lands on the pointing finger instead and steps down from there. :lol:

I hope that made sense.

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:15 pm

There are none so deaf as them that do not hear, Biillie is having a hard job understanding "NO!" and "STAY!" let alone "Stepdown" But when she is on my shoulder the easiest way to get her back on her cage is to encourage her to step up onto my hand and then let het stepoff onto her cage. But sometimes she knows what is coming and wont step up so l have to use one hand to prise her off my shoulder onto her cage but sometiems she runs round the back of my neck and l have to resort to using both hands to hold her frimly so her wings are held down and her feet no longer grip my pullover and put her back on her cage and no bites!
When l put a stick close to her to step up she will push it away with her beak, and even will push my hand away gently.
You have to laugh at these old pro's "Teach him to take a toy and drop it into a container." So where do you start?
First get a container and the rest is easy!!!!!!
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Tue Dec 10, 2013 8:07 pm

AjPeters: there are many good explanations on how to teach a bird to play fetch already. Anyone who searches it will find much better explanations than I could write. Considering how many times you have written mildly insulting comments on threads where I have been discussing training techniques with other people, I am guessing you don't care for instructions anyway.

Of course your bird doesn't stay. If someone asked me to stay in Japanese, I wouldn't understand them either! Besides that, why would she bother to stay when there is nothing in it for her? Why would she go to her cage when she doesn't want to, if there is nothing in it for her?

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:55 am

Thanks for your suggestions Claire, they sound good to me, and if other people don't agree then they could just as easily keep it to themselves?

I'm a bit downhearted today, I have come home to let Dudes out as I have to go back to work within half hour and yesterday I couldn't let him out at all. He started lunging at me through the bars :cry:

I don't know why he doesn't seem to want to be civil to me, I know he's probably just being a bird but I just don't get his behaviour at all, I was just opening his door to let him out :cry: It's really getting me down.

I was wondering whether I should get him a hand tamed buddy next year, as they learn so well from others, but you never can tell how they're going to get on, and would I be making more hassle for myself? Obviously I need to consider this very carefully before committing. Any ideas?
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Wed Dec 11, 2013 8:48 am

I've spent a lot of time in thinking on buddies for my birds. The sum of it is, make sure if you get a buddy it is a buddy For You. Your bird might give you some indication of how he feels about others if you have some other birds over to visit, but it's not guarantee. Also, if the bird already isn't a fan of you, providing him someone that nature suggests is better than you might be a bad idea. I totally endorse the learning from other birds, but I wonder if a visiting tame bird might not help just as well. I just joined my Budgies after a nice long side-by-side and I see they have definite opinions of each other. Actually, I am only letting them join while I'm there, and splitting them again when I go. Better safe than sorry, at least while the young ones are still young.

Another point to consider is that if Dudes is not sufficiently tame, and you bring in a tame bird, Dudes may get shuffled to the background, never get tamer, and live as an "also-ran". Not like you would consciously do that, but it seems to happen so I think it is tied to human nature.

Just thoughts.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AlphaWolf » Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:08 am

Loo,
I think it will be much better just start from step 1. I know it is probably frustrating but maybe you will find what maybe him angry. So maybe start by seeing if he comfortable by your precedes near hims dn work on it from there. I think it will bear more grit that way :D .
"Live with parrots and you learn to panic"

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Wed Dec 11, 2013 2:50 pm

My attempt at getting a buddy for Nila was a complete failure so far! They still don't get on! I don't know if Sapphire is extra uncivilised, but the mess the birds make is 5 times worse since we got her! I wouldn't mind the mess, if the little booggers liked each other!
Just saying there's downsides. :mrgreen:

But Missk is right about the modelling, it works great. Note: my new, young bird copies my older bird, not so much the other way around. I don't know if it is just my birds or an age thing. Though neither of them imitate Janeys attitude to us (she is very nervous of us).


Have you tried putting a treat in his mouth when he is lunging in the cage? I did that a couple times when sapphire go upset about her cover being rolled back and she changed her tune very quickly. She likes the cover being rolled back now!

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Wed Dec 11, 2013 3:36 pm

So l have put my foot in it again Claire and l shall sorry if l upset you with my remarks. Biilie used to get upset when l rolled the covers back lunging at the cage l put it down to a bad night, but now l arrange the lighting to be softer for about three hours before l cover her and she gets 13 hours of dark and quiet sleep in the mornings now she does not lunge.
Also she is responding to my command "Stay! and "No!" Rather than give a treats as a reward l use encouraging and loving words which she enjoys.
After reading Hormonal Behaviour in companion parrots and putting into action their recomendations Billie has been a lot quieter, and has not bitten me even when l rough handle her when she wont go back on her cage. She does not want to and sees no reason to step on her cage and that is where training with rewards has the advantage of me. But l am well pleased at the stage l am with Billie.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Wed Dec 11, 2013 5:27 pm

Rewards are anything your bird likes! Some birds like being petted, or talked to. When you pet or talk to your bird for doing what you like, you are rewarding behaviour.

Food is usually universally accepted as a reward by the Indian Ringnecks themselves. Your bird is actually a different species, which has different personality traits from an Indian Ringneck.
Your bird was most likely handraised and was actually quite tame when you got her. A tame bird that is scared or nervous is very different from an aviary bird that is so terrified of people coming near its cage it is smashing itself into the bars to get away from the scarey human.

I recommend the use of food rewards with Indian Ringnecks for a number of reasons:
1) it is an easy way for both people and untame birds to both understand and form a way to communicate with each other. An untame bird does not understand humans. When I got Sapphire, even talking to her in a calm voice made her really nervous.

2) Sharing food is something these birds do with birds they like. Nila even feeds Charlie.

3) Indian Ringnecks do not respond well to force. They are more sensitive than Alexandrines. If I grabbed Sapphire and forced her into the cage she would soon start biting me or flying away when my hand came towards her. I have learnt this with Nila when we first got him and didn't know any better. Luckily he flew away instead of biting. We re-evaluated our techniques and made changes and now he goes to his cage happily.

4) Both the owner and the bird have a nice time together when they are having treats.

5) It works well! I have managed to avoid all the biting problems that you keep describing in your bird. Since it is well documented, I did not have to discover it for myself. All I had to do was read a bunch of articles, observe whether this method was effective on my birds when I tried and viola! I have friendly birds that like doing what I want or need them to do at that moment.

6) I would rather have a bird that wants to do what I ask, then a bird that I have to force to do things. I don't like to be grabbed and forced into a car, why would I do this to my bird? Treat others the way you want to be treated. I would rather someone convinces me it is a good idea to do something, than be forced to do it. My birds have shown no signs that they enjoy being forced to do things.

7) Some people, including the op of this thread, dislike using fear, force and domination to achieve the desired results. Just because we are bigger than our birds, it doesn't give us the right to push them around.

8 ) In the wild, parrots spend heaps of time finding food. They have adapted to solving problems and puzzles to find food. It is a natural way for them to exercise their brains. By creating foraging opportunities for them to convince them to do everyday things that are required of parrots who live in houses, I am encouraging them to use their little brains!

9) When a bird is forced to do things it doesn't learn as much as it does when it makes a choice to do something because it wants to. When anyone is scared they tend to run off instinct (like biting in parrots). I don't know how much parrots stop to rationalise things afterwards, so I prefer to encourage them to rationalise as we go. This means that I can't use things that scare them, because that would send them into reactive behaviour, instead of using their wonderfully clever little rational parrot brains. Nila loves problem solving! if you give him a dish of pellets and a puzzle with pellets in it, he chooses the puzzle.

That is a good start to why I encourage people to use reward based training and use it myself.

If you want to reinvent parrot training, that is fine! I think you should understand and breakdown what you are actually doing. That way you will understand what is getting results and what isn't. When you figure that out you will be able to stop doing things that don't work and keep doing what does work.

You might be interested to know that, the things you have written on here that have worked with your bird (from what I have seen of your posts on threads I have contributed to) are the times you have been using reward based methods. This is why self assessment is important if you want to improve bird training methods. Believe me, I assess myself and my bird handling every day and make changes if I need to!

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Wed Dec 11, 2013 9:52 pm

Hi there. Just throwing in what I think might be pertinent information, or a good reminder for anybody -

Primary reinforcers (rewards that are universally rewarding) seem to be, I believe, in the categories of food, sex, and (maybe) shelter/safety. I'm a little fuzzy on that last one.
Secondary reinforcers (rewards we must learn are rewarding) are pretty much everything else that is, in actuality, rewarding for a particular individual.

If we remember this, it can help us sort out what is rewarding and providing incentive for our pets, family, friends, coworkers, and random fellow humans, among others.

Example: A little baby finds food rewarding but really doesn't care about money any more than any other paper. Once she grows and has been taught how nice money can be, that can become a reward/reinforcer for her. This is a very common human secondary reinforcer. For this particular human, a fist full of money presented inside the hobby shop is a very strong motivator. The same thing might motivate, for instance, this human's best friend much, much less.

And so it is with our birds. Every bird will be reinforced by some sort of food. Those who have learned the niceness of certain other things, such as the soothing voice, the head scratch, the toy - they will respond for those items in a similar way as they will for food. But each bird is different and responds to it's own unique set of secondary reinforcers.

Thus, Nila can present behaviours for a puzzle, Rocky can present behaviours for a cat toy, Billie can present behaviours for whatever Billie likes, and they will ALL be responding to secondary reinforcers. They will ALL have learned at some point that those things are nice.

The take-home point is that those of us with second hand birds, and even those of us who obtained their birds young, but not from the untouched nest, should not overlook that our birds had the chance to learn to appreciate certain secondary reinforcers before they met us. For a bird obtained very young, especially from a breeder, it should be reasonably straightforward to identify (through questioning) the likely secondary reinforcers. For the "rehomed" bird, however, secondary reinforcers could be just about anything! So, as you go through life teaching your bird about lovely secondary reinforcers, don't forget that somebody else probably did the same thing before you got there.

~~~~


Bonus for those of us who like to really think about things: Is a nice, hot plate of your favourite dinner a good reinforcer for you? Guess what? It is a secondary reinforcer. Your primary reinforcer was Mother's Milk. Mother's Milk is, I'm guessing, not quite the reward it used to be. Now your secondary reinforcer is more potent than your primary. Enjoy!
Last edited by MissK on Thu Dec 12, 2013 10:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Thu Dec 12, 2013 9:27 am

What great comments, I will reply in more detail when I'm on my laptop, posting by phone is a bit awkward! Thanks for your posts guys :)
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Thu Dec 12, 2013 3:52 pm

A lot of interesting ideas Claire but l like point 9 best, and MissK as you say different birds have different responses, are Alexandrines much different to ringnecks? I like to offer Biile a first choice from a food bowl that l am about to put in her cage and tonight l offered the fresh veg bowl for her to find the little bit of cheese l had hidden under the cabbage leaves. She turned one cabbage leaf and the another and bit my finger. She is not keen on puzzles, l went through my drama queen act of screaming and she looked sorry and when l put the bowl into her cage she stepped up onto my arm. I thought that was her way of saying sorry.
I have no problems with her stepping up but if she does not want to step down from my shoulder l try to get her to step up onto my hand but if she refuses then l have to ease her onto the cage. She no longer screams, and is a lot better behaved first thing in the morning. We have come a long way together during the 4 months l have had her.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Thu Dec 12, 2013 9:19 pm

With regards to how they respond to operant conditioning, Alexandrines are not much different to Ringnecks.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:51 am

MissK wrote:I've spent a lot of time in thinking on buddies for my birds. The sum of it is, make sure if you get a buddy it is a buddy For You. Your bird might give you some indication of how he feels about others if you have some other birds over to visit.... I totally endorse the learning from other birds, but I wonder if a visiting tame bird might not help just as well.
I totally agree, I think most of us, who didn't get two birds at once to start with would hope that they both got on, but like you say theres no guarantee. And I think I would be probably mostly getting the buddy for Dudes, in an ideal rosey fluffy world the new one would be tame, and Dudes would learn from it, and they'd get on so well they'd snuggle up together and preen each other etc...but that would probably never happen and I'd have two buggers because the new one would learn from Dudes, and I'd have double the mess and hassle! So maybe thinking about it properly, it might not be the best idea.
AlphaWolf wrote:Loo,
I think it will be much better just start from step 1. I know it is probably frustrating but maybe you will find what maybe him angry. So maybe start by seeing if he comfortable by your precedes near hims dn work on it from there. I think it will bear more grit that way :D .
Do you know what Alpha? You are so right, when the Christmas period is over I am going to go back to basics, start from scratch and concentrate on target training and trick training, see if I can't build and work on the bond that seems to be widening each day. It's so heartbreaking when the bird you adore won't have a bar of you! I'm not asking for scritches or preens or nuzzle time, just basic being in the same area without the lunges or bites would be like all my Christmasses at once.
InTheAir wrote:An untame bird does not understand humans. When I got Sapphire, even talking to her in a calm voice made her really nervous.

Both the owner and the bird have a nice time together when they are having treats.

I would rather have a bird that wants to do what I ask, then a bird that I have to force to do things. I don't like to be grabbed and forced into a car, why would I do this to my bird? Treat others the way you want to be treated. I would rather someone convinces me it is a good idea to do something, than be forced to do it.

Some people, including the op of this thread, dislike using fear, force and domination to achieve the desired results. Just because we are bigger than our birds, it doesn't give us the right to push them around.
My dudes even now still shakes a tiny bit in our company. It's not the whole time, or so bad it stops him from coming to me, but just going by that I know he isn't 100% comfortable. It's heartbreaking to think he is still scared after all this time, I wonder if I just have a skittish bird? Not that I'm trying to take the blame off myself, all I know is that I'd never force myself on him so just wondering what it is that's making him so untrusting of me :(
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AlphaWolf » Fri Dec 13, 2013 7:22 am

Doodlebug wrote:
AlphaWolf wrote:Loo,
I think it will be much better just start from step 1. I know it is probably frustrating but maybe you will find what maybe him angry. So maybe start by seeing if he comfortable by your precedes near hims dn work on it from there. I think it will bear more grit that way :D .

Loo, if you see my bird you will know what skittish really is. Imagine that is every time you change food and water your bird gets really scared. Or he sees you and runs away in terror. Or shivering and trembling when you approach. So your dudes is way ahead of mine so that should be a comfortable though :). Also a brand new start is sometimes what they need and a new page will help a lot, trust me. I know that you are way more knowledgable than me but your advice really helped curbed my early frustration. Oh and can you please post a picture of Doodlebug.
"Live with parrots and you learn to panic"

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Fri Dec 13, 2013 8:18 am

Hi Loo,

Hearing that he shakes a little really makes me think it is fear. Going back to the start is a good idea. Also might be to re-evaluate the particulars of your daily life. Is he getting enough face time? Are you feeding by hand? Are you talking to him? Are you approaching the cage gently? Are you moving slowly enough? Are you taking care not to loom over him or stare at him? *Is someone else frightening him when you are not there?* Is there something scary he sees from the window or in the next room? Is anybody handling him against his wish? Is he getting proper sleep? Proper food? Are there unexpected events surprising him and putting him on edge-could include spontaneous loud noises? On the other hand, can you tie any aggression to hormonal activity-- how was the timing of it?

Best wishes, as always.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:57 am

Thanks Alpha, and MissK.

MissK - to answer your queries;

When you say face time, do you mean literally does he see me enough? Or out of the cage time etc? I work my clients breakfasts from 8am til around 1030/11 when I pop home to let him out, I am there til I have to do lunches at 12, I leave him out (whether thats a good or bad thing in others opinions..but I always make sure its as safe as can be, if I thought he'd be in danger I would not leave him out) I am back by about 2pm. He is out of the cage til around 4pm I would say, weekends he is out as long as poss.

I am feeding him by hand, treats like fruit, veg etc. Sometimes he takes it nicely, sometimes he will lunge and snatch but you never can really tell how he will take it so I go to him slowly most times, and hold it slightly out of his reach so he has to stretch to get it.

I talk to him all the time, of course he may not know what I'm going on about! I repeat phrases that I would personally love him to say, whistle and sing. I go about my business in the usual way, but whenever I approach him its always slowly and gently, and tell others too as well.

I don't think I loom over him no, mostly he is above me on his playstand anyway! I do look at him alot as he's my beautiful boy! But I don't particularly stare as I know that frightens them. I do stand when I've uncovered him in the mornings (not first thing, when he's heard us move around the house awhile) and say Good morning Doodlebug, how are you today? But I'm not there overly long as I have to get myself and my son ready for school. I bring him a little something to eat about 15 mins later to let him wake up a bit.

Nobody is at home when I'm not there, my son is at school and partner at work.

His cage is in an alcove and the window is to the right covered by nets and curtains so he can't see much at all through that. He sees even less now he's in the dining room for Christmas. Traffic noises are at a minimum so I can't think it's that.

Nobody is handling him, I won't force myself on him and everyone else is wary of him so they wouldn't go near him, even when he flies around them they duck and flinch, the wusses!

Sleep time (when he gets covered) is from 9pm til around 7am, evening times the lights are always down low as i like the ambience :)

I have three feed bowls, one has a seed mix, one has a very small amount of things like pine nuts/pumpkin seeds/dried fruit/oats, and the other is the fresh fruit/veg pot. Oh and of course he has a water bowl.

No spontaneous loud noises.

Am unsure how to answer the question about the hormones thing, the only thing I can think of is he will do the boy heart shaped wing thing at the top of his spiral perch sometimes, it has a wooden red bead with a tassle, which he could mistake it for a head I suppose, he will love it up one minute and attack it the next. He will do this to any mirror he sees too, I have took one out of his cage.

I appreciate your asking these in depth questions, any suggestions are great :) I think its fear too, and need to bring it back down to basics when all these Christmas changes have gone back to normal to see how I can help him.

As requested, Alpha, he is on my lap enjoying the paper together.

Image
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by MissK » Fri Dec 13, 2013 11:08 am

Hi Loo,

Yes, I did mean literally time you spend together with him, interacting. This may need to increase.

When I talk about hormones, I mean the way they may temporarily change at the start of breeding and nesting season. I noticed, for instance, that Rocky gets a bit snippy about me being in his cage at that time. We have a prompt little chat about it, where I remind him that it's my cage and he just lives in it, and all tends to go smoothly. Of course, we have a good history to rely on.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Fri Dec 13, 2013 2:12 pm

Hi Loo,
I think the problem is not enough sleep, They need 12 - 14 hours of dark sleep. Before l got Billie she had to make shift about sleep wherever she could , was never covered, and she lunged all the time, was very frightened. Now she is a most placid bird you could wish to have.
Today l wanted to change her water bottle so l said "All right to te do the water?" She was eating her seeds and l had to put one hand to the back of the cage and another over the top while l disentangled the bottle from its retaining spring and clip. She just continued eating her seeds as if nothing was happening. Later l wanted to put her swimming pool in and knocked it on the door frame so water went every where she looked a bit upset at this intrusion openned her beak as if to complain thought better of it and got on with her breakfast. She sleeps 7 pm until 9 am but for the first two hours l have the TV on but listen with head phones. I put the grid in so she cannot get to the bottom and make for her a bundlle of dried camoloule grass and l can hear her eating that.
It might as MissK says be hormonal, Claire gave me a very good link about Hormonal changes in companion parrots and a lot of Billie's/My problems came from too much petting, allowing her to behave sexually not getting enough sleep and some other things to do with food and electric lighting, . You can find the link on Parrot Speak. Needless to say she is a lot better but still tries it on, l shall be glad when the mating season ends.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Little Buttercup » Fri Dec 13, 2013 10:03 pm

I was also thinking if you can add 2-3 hours more of sleeping time? And when you say you go 'slowly' does it mean you creep like how a predator would? How I move around Kiwi, I would'nt call it slowly but rather gracefully. If I have to walk past him at close range or get up from a chair where Kiwi is close by I go gracefully but not slowly nor abrupt. Now he does'nt freak or fly up since he knows what I will be doing.

Is dudes handraised?
Best of luck

Ash

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by AJPeter » Sat Dec 14, 2013 1:23 pm

You have the right idea Ash, but what l mean is slow you hand down as it approaches your bird, best to pause then be bitten.
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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by Doodlebug » Thu Dec 19, 2013 11:12 am

MissK wrote:Hi Loo,

Yes, I did mean literally time you spend together with him, interacting. This may need to increase.

When I talk about hormones, I mean the way they may temporarily change at the start of breeding and nesting season. I noticed, for instance, that Rocky gets a bit snippy about me being in his cage at that time. We have a prompt little chat about it, where I remind him that it's my cage and he just lives in it, and all tends to go smoothly. Of course, we have a good history to rely on.
Hi MissK. I have increased the amount of time we spend together, obviously life gets in the way and my work patterns cannot be helped, so I am not putting him back in his cage til around 6pm now, whereupon I will warm up some of that delicious sweet potato mash recipe which he adores so much he doesn't even toss his pot on the floor!

We have had so much fun this week! I have been in the kitchen a lot, making lemon meringue pie, and cheese scones. I brought him into the kitchen with me on his tabletop T perch and he is getting so much better at travelling between rooms now as he knows theres always something good happening. Here he is discovering when life gives you lemons, make lemonade!

Image
AJPeter wrote:Hi Loo,
I think the problem is not enough sleep, They need 12 - 14 hours of dark sleep.
Little Buttercup wrote:I was also thinking if you can add 2-3 hours more of sleeping time? And when you say you go 'slowly' does it mean you creep like how a predator would? How I move around Kiwi, I would'nt call it slowly but rather gracefully. If I have to walk past him at close range or get up from a chair where Kiwi is close by I go gracefully but not slowly nor abrupt. Now he does'nt freak or fly up since he knows what I will be doing.

Is dudes handraised?
Best of luck

Ash
Thanks guys, I have started covering him earlier, I'm not sure his temperament has improved but it sure won't hurt for him, or indeed any of us to have more shut eye!

I move around the same as you Ash, and I make sure I am talking before I go into a room he's in so he knows I am coming so isn't startled. He was parent raised in an aviary, and its slow progress. But he's so adorable he's worth every nano second :)
Loo :)

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Re: To Glove Or Not To Glove? That Is The Question....

Post by InTheAir » Thu Dec 19, 2013 12:42 pm

What a cute little monster!

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