I’m watching TV today — an episode of Monk (Mr. Monk and the Red Herring) — and imagine my surprise when they feature a sun conure! On the show, Monk goes to a pet store and notices a bird. The geeky pet store clerk says, “You can have him for free. We can’t get rid of him, people keep returning him.” When asked what’s wrong with the bird, the guy says “he depresses people: he doesn’t talk, he just sits there and cleans himself.”

Aughh!!! This is such a huge pet peeve of mine (pun totally intended). An animal is not a toaster oven!! You don’t just return them because they aren’t as “fun” as you thought they’d be. When bringing home a new pet, you make a commitment to him/her. You don’t just exchange it.

This attitude isn’t just writers’ license on a television show; I see people say things like that all the time on the Internet. “Oh, he didn’t bond with my wife, he likes me better, so we’re thinking of returning him and getting a different bird.” Ugh!

Makes me very unhappy. Some people take the decision to bring home a bird much too lightly. (Good reasons NOT to get a parrot)

Oh, and that cage the bird was in (in the fictional pet store) was WAY too small. A conure cage should be at least 20″ in the shortest dimension. Stewie’s cage is 21″w x 32″l x 35″h and I’m actually of the opinion that it’s a little too small (even though I can fit my whole body in it). Once you put toys and perches in a cage, it really starts looking small, fast.

Here’s what a cage that size looks like; notice the conure standing on the door.