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    How to Train a Dove

    ArticlePigeon AdviceTuesday 29 March 2011
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    Doves and pigeons have been domesticated pet birds for thousands of years. The difference between doves and pigeons is mostly in the size. Doves are typically smaller and sleeker. Training doves can be very time-consuming.

    Get to know your dove. Spend time with it. Be gentle and patient. Gently lift its wings and play with its feet. Pet the bird as often as possible to let it become familiar and comfortable with being held. Show attention and love. No bird will learn out of fear. These birds are affectionate and are happiest and respond best when they are treated kindly and have other doves around them.

    Reward your birds with small wholeseed treats such as millet and wheat as you work with them. You are teaching the dove that when it performs certain actions it will be fed rewarded with tweats. Observing the doves' body language and becoming accustomed to their preferences will help you respond to them in a way that results in better communication.

    Whistle  to teach them to return to or to sit on your shoulder. As they learn the sound of your specific whistle, they will respond. Small bird whistle mouthpieces are available that help you mimic the bird's own whistle.

    When training doves to return to their perch, place a stuffed white sock on the perch to draw their attention to the perch. This helps them recognise where they are going to land. Release them over and over again from a very short distance to the perch to help them understand what you are trying to get them to do. It can be more of a challenge to train a dove to return home because it does not have the natural homing instinct that a pigeon has.

     

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