Nala is plucking again

When I got home from work today, I changed my clothes and retrieved my bird. From the look of her chest, she’d be plucking.

I brought her downstairs, as is now my habit, keeping her on my shoulder as I do chores. Like laundry. Here we are in the basement. She thinks my hood is a kangaroo pouch.

I read somewhere that if your bird tries to steal your coffee, you can try to fool them with a cup of tea. Herbal tea. So I made Nala some blueberry tea and it kept her very occupied while I made dinner.

Watch Nala and her tea here: Nala and her tea

It really feels like the perfect plan. I come home, release her from her cage and reward her for her patience with a cup of tea.

And dinner. Oh, Dinner! The teenager and I had butternut squash apple bisque soup and boxed gourmet Velveeta style Mac-and-cheese. I gave Nala a couple of noodles and her own taste of soup.

After dinner she helped me do more chores. Then I sat down on my bed and started to cuddle her. She started plucking and made herself cry. Then she made herself bleed.

Is she overstimulated? Is she plucking to try and guarantee my attention? Does she know being back in my room means the night is winding down and she’ll have to go in her cage?

It makes me so sad. I know I have to be patient. I know she has been “left” and that she couldn’t prosper in a store. But it’s like the birdy version of being a cutter.

(The hydrogen peroxide wasn’t for her but for me. I fell down the stairs Monday.)

Maybe her skin is itchy. Or dry. Maybe it’s just habit. Hopefully it will improve.

So I bought her a bird sweatshirt.

Now I don’t know how on God’s green earth I’m going to get a cockatoo that bites into a sweater.

But I gotta try something.