Is Your Home’s Air Safe for Your Pet Bird?

November 20, 2006 by  
Filed under Pet Birds

Birds are very sensitive to fumes in the air. Their excellent respiratory system (they need plenty of oxygen in order to fly) makes them very susceptible to poisons in the air. Even fumes you can’t smell could be fatal to your pet bird.

Coal miners took advantage of birds’ sensitive lungs. They brought caged canaries into the mine shaft. If the canary appeared sick, or even died, the miners knew there were dangerous gasses in the air, such as methane or carbon monoxide. The miners could then escape the poisoned air before they felt the effects themselves.

Keep the coal miners in mind when you breathe the air in your home. Even though you may not be affected by fumes, they could be deadly to your feathered pet. Dangerous fumes include:

  • Airborne cleaning agents
  • Pesticides
  • Smoke
  • Paint fumes
  • Oven-cleaners
  • Fumes from overheated non-stick pans

Be especially aware of fumes in the kitchen. The kitchen is the most dangerous room in the house for your bird. The self-cleaning mode on some ovens releases fumes that can quickly kill pet birds in the house, and fumes from overheated pans with non-stick surfaces, including some frying pans, cookie sheets, and waffle irons.

To keep your bird safe, remove them from the house when using pesticides or strong- cleaning agents. Keep them away from your kitchen. Keep your bird’s area well ventilated, or use air filters.

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