Stewie’s First Real “Step Up”

September 17, 2007

A major breakthrough! Earlier over the weekend, Stewie was leaning towards me as I sat in front of my computer, super interested in what I was doing. So I scooted closer, offered him my arm and said “step up?” And the answer was “yes”! Okay, so he didn’t actually say anything, he just stepped onto my arm. But I was floored! That’s really great progress.

I put him on the back of my computer chair and let him check things out from there. Then he spotted some birds outside and proceeded to scream straight into my ear!

The rest of the weekend, he only stepped up one more time – the other times preferring to bite me when offered my arm, but he did enjoy sitting on the back of the chair quite a bit … I would just roll the chair over to his cage and he’d climb on. I’ll have to take some pictures of that soon.

I also signed up for the Bird Clicker Training list on Yahoo Groups. Based on all the really cool info I learned there, I’ve decided to start Stewie on clicker training soon. It’s not just all about cool tricks – a training program can help build trust and a stronger relationship. Plus it exercises the bird’s mind, keeps him engaged, so he (hopefully) won’t get bored. I think we’re starting to reach that point in our time together that he’s comfortable enough and trusts me sufficiently to allow for some basic target training.



  1. Wow..you’re coming along. Step up is really the base of what a lot of the rest of Stewie’s training should be based on… I highly suggest the Womach Brothers course I have on my blog…I think it would definetely help you and Stewie!

  2. I joined that clicker group I think, but everything seemed so vague in the intro (before I was approved) that I never went back. I really never got the gist of what the clicker was meant to do.

  3. The clicker is supposed to act as a “bridge” to the treat, to signal to the animal the exact instance they did what was wanted. It’s supposed to be less vague than praise and more immediate than pulling out a treat. The important thing is that it’s not supposed to take the place of a reward, it just lets the animal know “THAT right there was what I wanted, now you’ll get a treat”.

    That’s how I understood it.

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