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Dear Parrots magazine,

The harness

When I first saw parrot harnesses advertised, I was horrified. It just seemed so unnatural for a bird with delicate feathers to have a harness strapped to it. Unlike a dog, feathers lay down in a specific order and anything that is fastened around it will ruffle up, or, even break feathers - or so I thought.

My friend has a cockatoo and has a harness so she can take her cockatoo outside and on trips with her. I did try to put her off but she was determined to get one. However, she takes the bird, in its harness, everywhere with her and has never had a problem. I had to admit to being persuaded to get on for my Yellow-fronted Amazon so they can both go out together. Although my friend’s cockatoo took some time to get used to it, my Amazon took to it immediately. This, I thought, was a bit odd, as I expected a lot of protest. But after just a few nibbles at it, he seemed to accept it as though it was part of him and there has never been any feather damage. He just loves his trips outside - in safety!

Robin Ingleby, Essex




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