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Dove Care Tips

February 1, 2023

Did you know that doves can make great pets? These pretty birds are very gentle and sweet, which is undoubtedly why they are so often associated with peace and love. However, they do have some specific care needs. A local Fort Myers, FL vet goes over some of them in this article.

Basics

The dove is part of the Columbidae family, which also includes pigeons. While there are hundreds of different types of doves, the ones that are most popular as pets are the Ring-necked dove and the Diamond dove. These are good beginner birds. Just consider Polly’s longevity: doves can live about 10 years or so. They tend to do best in bonded pairs. Just keep in mind that if you keep male and female doves together, they’re likely going to breed.

Charms

Doves are very docile, and rarely bite or nip. Because of this, they can be a great match for a household with kids, so long as the kids don’t startle or frighten them. As far as noise goes, they are fairly quiet, and, unlike parrots, are not going to imitate car alarms or fire trucks while you’re eating dinner. Instead, they prefer preening, sunbathing, and generally looking cute.

Socialization

Doves can be hand tamed, and often don’t mind being held. However, they generally seem to prefer that their humans admire them from a distance. As with other pets, early socialization is crucial to helping your dove feel relaxed and comfortable around humans. You’ll need to pay attention to your winged pals every day to keep them tame and gentle. 

Care

Your feathered buddies can have commercial bird food for her main meals. You’ll want to supplement that with veggies and leafy greens, which you can offer every other day. Some good options include chopped or shredded veggies, such as squash, carrots, and sweet potatoes. You can also offer seeds, such as millet, canary seed, hemp seed, milo and wheat, and small amounts of hard-boiled egg and whole-grain bread. About once a week, you can give your pretty pets safe fruits, such as berries, melons, or kiwis. For a really special treat, offer honey sticks. Just don’t go overboard with sugary snacks. A clean, comfy cage is also a must. Ask your vet for more information. 

Do you have questions about caring for a dove? Contact us, your Fort Myers, FL pet clinic, today! 

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