Our Complete Guide To Lovebirds As Pets | Westfield Vet (2024)

Lovebirds are very social and form deep bonds with their owners. If you are short on time to spend with your lovebird, then it is best to get him or her a companion.

There are several species of lovebirds, such as the genus Agap*rnis. But the most commonly found species in the pet trade include peach faced lovebirds, or Agap*rnis roseicollis, masked lovebirds (Agap*rnis personata) and Fischer’s lovebirds (Agap*rnis fischeri). There are many color mutations found in peach faced lovebirds and several mutations in some of the other species, so there are many color variations of lovebirds available. Lovebirds are small, compact parrots about 5-6 inches in length and can live up to 15 years or more.


Very active, curious, and playful, lovebirds pack a lot of personality into a small package. They are also feisty little birds. They are very social and form deep bonds with their owners and are sometimes very cuddly birds, but their intense personalities can also make them prone to nipping and territorial aggressiveness and jealousy. Hand-raised babies make the best pets. Some experts believe that females are more prone to jealousy and territoriality than males.

Find a Hand-Raised Baby

Hand-raised babies definitely make the best pets. Still, regular handling and training are needed to maintain a tame lovebird (so a hand raised baby that hasn’t been handled much as it gets older may be hard to hand tame again). If getting an older lovebird try to find one that was hand raised and has been handled regularly and has some training. Older lovebirds that are not hand tamed may require a great deal of patience for taming.

Social Needs – A Common Myth

A common myth about keeping lovebirds is that they should always be kept in pairs. If you have more than one lovebird they may become more deeply bonded to each other that to you. A single lovebird will do well, as long as it gets the social interaction, contact, affection, and attention that it needs from its human family members. If you are short on time to spend with your lovebird, then it is best to get him or her a companion, though.

Vocalizations and Speech

While not as loud as some larger parrots, lovebirds can produce a loud high pitched screech, especially if looking for your attention. Their normal chirps and squawks are not overly loud, but they do like to chatter. As a general rule, they are not known for their ability to mimic speech or sounds, although there are exceptions. Some say females are more apt to mimic sounds or speech than males.

Housing Lovebirds

As a bare minimum, I would recommend a cage at least 2 feet wide by 2 feet long (and 2 feet tall), but a larger cage is definitely better (with the length being relatively more important than the height). Bars should be no more than 1/2 to 5/8 inches apart, and should be oriented horizontally to allow the birds climb the sides of the cage. Avoid round cages. Provide a variety of perch sizes (including natural branches if possible) as this is healthier for a caged bird’s feet.

Feeding Lovebirds

Lovebirds should be fed a variety of foods. A good pellet diet can form the basis of the diet, supplemented by a variety of fresh foods and some seeds (seeds should make up less than 25 percent of the total diet). A cuttlebone can be provided for extra calcium.


Lovebirds are quite aggressive chewers, which must be kept in mind when choosing toys. Make sure there are no small parts that can be chewed off and ingested, and no clips, loose strings, or other parts in which your bird could get its beak, feet, or head trapped. Safe toys include wood, sisal, leather, acrylic, and rawhide toys (including hanging toys as long as they are not long enough to strangle your bird), bells, and ladders. As well, household items such as the cardboard tubes from paper towel rolls, paper cups, ink-free cardboard, and dried pasta shapes may also be used by your lovebird. Lovebirds are very active and playful so it is a good idea to have lots of toys on hand to rotate through the cage to keep them occupied. All toys including their hanging devices should be zinc and lead free. Cotton ropes are good too, but may be best used only under supervision since threads can come loose and entangle birds easily.

Our Complete Guide To Lovebirds As Pets | Westfield Vet (2024)


Do lovebirds need to go to the vet? ›

Like all other pet birds, lovebirds require annual, routine veterinary health check-ups.

What is the best food for lovebirds? ›

Some of the fruit supplements include berries, apples, grapes, pears, bananas, and kiwi. Some of the greens and vegetable supplements include spinach, endive, watercress, chickweed, radish, parsley, dandelions, carrot tops, and corn on the cob, peas, endive, field lettuce, and various garden herbs.

What is the lifespan of a lovebird in captivity? ›

Several factors affect the lifespan of lovebirds in the wild, such as shortages of food or water, unusual weather patterns, and predators. For lovebirds in the wild, the average life expectancy is anywhere from five to 15 years. With proper care, lovebirds in captivity can live between 10 and 20 years.

What temperature is too cold for lovebirds? ›

They can't survive freezing temperatures. Their feet and legs will freeze first, and then the bird will freeze to death. One you get below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, a bird is at a higher risk of not surviving the cold temperatures.

How to treat sick love birds at home? ›

Nursing Care for Sick Pet Birds
  1. Give all medications as directed. ...
  2. Keep your pet bird warm. ...
  3. Do not change your bird's sleep cycle. ...
  4. Make sure your bird eats and drinks. ...
  5. Avoid stress. ...
  6. Sick birds should be placed in Isolation. ...
  7. Notify your physician if you become ill. ...
  8. Notify your veterinarian if your bird's condition worsens.

Do lovebirds need vaccinations? ›

Vaccinations. A few vaccines are available for pet birds (notably polyomavirus vaccine), but most caged birds are not routinely vaccinated. If you have questions about the need to vaccinate your bird, you should discuss your concerns with your veterinarian.

What are lovebirds favorite fruit? ›

Fruits your lovebird can safely eat

This counts especially for apples, pears, cranberries, peaches, plums, hawthorn berry, mango, cherry, and nectarine. Some fruits are very acidic and should be given in moderation. This will be mentioned in the list.

Can lovebirds eat scrambled eggs? ›

As far as for a pet, eggs can be fed as an occasional treat as long as the eggs are fully cooked. I would avoid offering eggs to a non-breeding female, because they are a potential hormone trigger. In fact breeding birds that are not being fed a good diet will often eat their own eggs.

What fruits can lovebirds not eat? ›

While most fruit is safe and generally healthy for birds to consume in small amounts, certain fruits containing seeds (such as apples and pears) and pits (such as cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, and plums), should not be offered to birds without removing the seeds and pits first, as these seeds and pits ...

What do lovebirds do when their partner dies? ›

Symptoms of Grief. Signs of grief in birds may be subtle or obvious. Your lovebird may search his cage for his missing mate, or may call out for frequently than usual. He also may lose his appetite and might not be as keen to play.

Why do my lovebirds keep dying? ›

They can also have internal issues that are not apparent, and then they just die. Since she had a male around her, she may have been trying to lay eggs and got eggbound. There are a lot of other issues with egg laying that can result in a sudden death. Even without a male, female lovebirds often lay eggs.

What do lovebirds do when their mate dies? ›

Some birds may remain quiet and withdrawn, while others may become more active as they seek new companionship. Remember that this process is normal, and each bird will react differently to losing its mate.

How smart are lovebirds? ›

Lovebirds can be quite noisy and chirp a lot. But they are fun and very intelligent. You can teach them loads of tricks including flying to you.

What do lovebirds need in their cage? ›

Food and Water Dishes

Dry food, fresh food, and water should be offered in separate dishes. If more than one lovebird is kept in the same habitat, then each bird should have his own feeding station to discourage competition. Water dishes should be large enough for the lovebird to bathe in.

How to play with love birds? ›

Play with Your bird

Play music at a low volume or sing to your bird. While it sounds a bit odd, birds respond well to music and familiar songs. Some pet birds even like to dance to their favorite beats. Try making out-of-habitat time a bonding experience by carrying them around on your shoulder.

When should I take my bird to the vet? ›

Ideally, bird owners should take their pet birds to the vet at least once a year for checkup. In some cases, emergency vet visits may be necessary.

Do I take my bird to the vet? ›

Whether you buy or adopt a new pet bird, make sure to take them to a veterinarian for a health check right away. Not only does this visit protect your financial investment, it also protects the health of the other birds, pets, and people in your home.

Are love birds easy to take care of? ›

Care & Feeding

Like most birds, lovebirds love to exercise and require the largest cage that your budget and space can afford. Lovebirds that are cooped up in a small cage and never given any freedom tend to become neurotic and can develop self-mutilating habits. Toys are a must for these active parrots.

How long can lovebirds be left alone? ›

It's fine for them to be alone and stay in the cage for two weeks, but you need someone to come in twice a day, ideally. Twice a week isn't going to work. If they soil their water, they can get a bacterial infection because bacterial growth can start in just a few hours if the water is very dirty.

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