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Aviator Harness Training on GCC Help

Discuss the methods and techniques of clicker training, target training and bonding. These are usually the first steps in training a young parrot.

Aviator Harness Training on GCC Help

Postby faeclarinet » Sun Jun 19, 2016 10:15 pm

Hello, I have been working on my gcc to get used to his harness and the different things that go along with it.

First of all, I set the harness on the area Gizmo was playing because he really freaked out at the sight of it. He wouldn't get within a foot of it. So, I set it down and held a nutriberry over it to get him to go towards it. Then he was a little less afraid of it. Then, every time he touched it I would give him a treat. That way, he associated the harness with treats. Then once he was comfortable touching it (chewing) I picked it up and held it out to him for him to touch and get a treat. I did this over and over till he was comfortable.

Then, I had to hold him so he wouldn't run, I touched it to his head or back and rewarded him with a treat. After doing this many many many times, I took the biggest loop on the thing and had him reach through it to get a treat so he got a little used to the thing going over his head. Keep in mind, none of the fabric touched him at this point. I also did everything very slowly. Don't rush or it will freak your bird out big time.

After that, I slowly made the loop smaller so it was closer to his head and eventually touching his head. I stopped using the harness for training there. Instead, I used my hand and made a circle with my pointer finger and thumb and began slipping that over Gizmo's head so he got used to something sliding over his head and would reward him each time.

Once he was comfortable with that, I took the actual part of the harness that slips over his head and slid it over, had it stay there for a couple of seconds, slipped it off and rewarded him. I did this quite a few times until he was comfortable with it.

I haven't figured out how to get him comfortable with doing the rest of the harness yet. I had to man handle him a little which I'm sure stressed him out some, but hey, we're both learning about this new thing. I took it off and put it on again and it went smoother the second time. The problem is that it is extremely difficult to hold onto him and put the harness on. I need 3 hands! I can't tighten the strap if I'm holding onto him because I need two hands for that.

Does anyone have any tips for putting the harness on small birds? Most videos are for large parrots which are extremely different, especially because the harness is much smaller on a large bird and doesn't take up as much of their body.

I can put the loop over Gizmo's head just fine but tightening the strap is really difficult for me.

:gcc:
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Re: Aviator Harness Training on GCC Help

Postby Pajarita » Mon Jun 20, 2016 10:25 am

I don't use harnesses on my birds so I don't have any personal experience with them but, for what I have seen in videos and read, it's not the size of the bird but whether the bird is perfectly OK with having the harness on him that makes the difference. So, if you have to 'manhandle' or hold him down, I would think that your problem is that you are rushing things and not allowing sufficient time for the bird to accept the harness.

See this: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1329

If I remember correctly, there was another video of Michael putting the harness on with only one hand but I don't know where it is... Maybe Wolf can find it for you.
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Re: Aviator Harness Training on GCC Help

Postby Chantilly » Tue Jun 21, 2016 4:50 am

Here is the link to the one handed putting on of harness: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=7BH1tCRb6oI
Pajarita wrote:I don't use harnesses on my birds so I don't have any personal experience with them but, for what I have seen in videos and read, it's not the size of the bird but whether the bird is perfectly OK with having the harness on him that makes the difference. So, if you have to 'manhandle' or hold him down, I would think that your problem is that you are rushing things and not allowing sufficient time for the bird to accept the harness.

See this: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1329

If I remember correctly, there was another video of Michael putting the harness on with only one hand but I don't know where it is... Maybe Wolf can find it for you.
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Re: Aviator Harness Training on GCC Help

Postby Wolf » Tue Jun 21, 2016 7:40 am

Have you tried putting your bird on a table or perch to put the harness on? That is what I would be doing. The only real disadvantage to doing it this way is that it does require the bird to cooperate in the process as it can easily just walk away if on a table and although I think the perch would work better they can still leave if they don't want to put the harness on. The main advantage of using the table or perch is that if you can put the harness on the bird it is because the bird trusts you enough for you to get it on them. And isn't that what you really want, a bird that trusts you?
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