Domestic and international vacations provide a welcome break from everyday life. However, if you have pet budgies, you’ll be concerned about the implications of going on a trip.
After all, who will care for your budgie while on vacation? Who will feed it? How will it stay entertained? Will you return to find it lonely, injured, or upset with you?
The good news is that you don’t need to let your budgie’s care needs stop you from taking a break. Many safe and responsible options will ensure your pet budgie stays happy, contented, and safe.
You can leave your budgie at the vet’s, a friend’s, or at home. If your budgie has a calmer temperament and doesn’t mind car rides, you can even take it with you.
How Long Can Budgies Be Left Alone?
If you own at least two budgies, you can leave them alone for less than 24 hours.
Just ensure that someone checks up on them halfway through the day. Also, provide additional food and water to ensure they don’t run out of anything.
However, if your budgie doesn’t have a friend, it’s unwise to leave your budgie alone for more than a day. Aside from running out of food and clean water, a single budgie can become lonely.
After all, budgies are social creatures. In the wild, they’re never without a companion, and in captivity, they come to rely on their owners as their flock if no other birds are present.
According to Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry, budgies can become stressed when left alone for long periods.
Where Can I Leave My Budgie When I Go On Holiday?
Not taking your budgie with you can seem like a bad idea. For some people, it can feel like neglecting their responsibility to their budgies.
With that said, budgerigars aren’t exactly the best travel companions. That can make it necessary to leave your budgie elsewhere, such as:
You can always leave your budgie at home if you’re not on vacation for long.
After all, your budgie is already familiar with that location. It won’t be stressed by new sights, sounds, or people, leaving it only to deal with your absence.
Likewise, there’s a far lesser chance of emergencies occurring at home. It might feel counterintuitive since you won’t be able to keep an eye on your budgie. However, the budgie can easily become nauseated on a car ride or stressed when in someone else’s home.
If you leave your budgie at home, get someone to come over to look after your pet. For example, this could include a trusted friend whose willing to check on your budgie.
Ideally, the check-in should be during meal times so your budgie can have company while it eats. After all, birds are social eaters and may become stressed if they don’t have anyone eating with them.
At the very least, this person should check up on the budgie daily to ensure it has food and water. If possible, ask your friend to stay with the budgie and interact with it for at least 20-30 minutes.
If you only have one budgerigar, consider leaving your budgie at a friend’s house. A solo budgerigar will fare better when it isn’t left completely alone, especially when you are gone for more than a day.
Ideally, this friend should have prior experience taking care of birds. The best scenario will include a person who already knows the budgie, so the bird doesn’t feel uneasy around a stranger.
If no one is familiar with your budgie already, consider letting a person visit a few times. This friend should be able to play with the budgie before handing them over for your vacation.
Likewise, you should take the budgie to your friend’s house for a trial run 1-2 times. This ensures the budgie will be less upset about the change in the environment.
Encourage your friend to give the budgie a quiet area where it won’t be disturbed by heavy foot traffic or new faces. Ask them to play with the budgie at least once daily so that it doesn’t feel lonely and alienated in this new environment with you gone.
Nonetheless, a downside to this method is the stress it might cause. It can be stressful for budgerigars to relocate to a different home. However, being left completely alone can be even more stressful. The discomfort of going on a trip with you will be tenfold.
The good news is that budgies bond quickly with people who care for them. So, your pet should warm up to your friend within a few days.
A vet clinic is a good alternative if your budgie is alone and you don’t have a friend to leave it with. This is also true if you’re leaving for an extended period, and no one is willing to care for the bird that long.
Not all vet clinics will allow owners to board their pets, but most do. Always consider getting in contact ahead of time to make sure.
Of course, your best option is the vet you regularly take your pets to. However, if this isn’t possible, consider an exotic pet clinic, ideally one that specializes in birds.
Downsides include unfamiliarity with the place and the noise from other animals. Nonetheless, budgerigars may become stressed from the new location, but vets will know how to calm down a bird.
Vet clinics should also have separate boarding spaces per animal species. If this isn’t the case, consider boarding with a different clinic.
Another concern is the cost, as some vet clinics charge more than others. When it comes to small bird species, the boarding cost should reflect the animal’s size.
Some clinics require lab tests before allowing owners to board their pets, such as blood work and other tests to rule out infectious diseases.
Ask about these tests beforehand, and complete them before your trip.
Can I Take My Budgie On Holiday?
Regarding budgerigars, it’s recommended not to travel with your bird.
Budgerigars are prone to timid natures and fear. According to Zoo Biology, stress can affect their antibody count, making them more prone to illness.
Because of that, budgies are more likely to be stressed when traveling, no matter where you’re going or how far.
With that said, the answer will depend on your budgie. Some budgies are nervous about new environments and will be heavily stressed by car rides. However, you might have an easy-going budgie that adapts quickly to new environments, with a small adjustment period.
How do you know if traveling hard is for your budgie? Consider its personality.
Is your budgie more open to new situations, new people, and new places? Does it like car rides? Is it okay with its cage being moved around a lot? If you answered yes to these questions, your budgie will likely be okay with traveling.