I just wanted to let you know that I did wind up adopting a new parakeet on Sunday. I went with the blue one that preened my hair because when I revisited the store he did the same thing and he even gave me a kiss on the lips! I have named him Pixel and he is adorable. He was all animated at the pet store, but since I have gotten him home he's been really scared. I had to transport him in a cardboard box with holes, the clerk said they stress out less that way. And unfortunately the minute I got home my neighbor was having phone issues and asked if she could use my phone and she brought her adorable, but high strung dog in with her. I had her hold the dog when I put Pixel in Bo's old cage with brand new toys and we just left Pixel alone while she used my phone and then chatted with me for an hour saying thank you. The dog didn't really bother with Pixel, but was running around and jumping on everything. I think that was way too stressful for the little guy and not the ideal beginning to our life together. Why am I WAY too nice sometimes? :(
After my neighbor left, I noticed that Pixel panted for almost 4 hours. He wouldn't eat, drink, or sleep for almost 24 hours. I was SO worried. Here I thought I finally got the courage to adopt again, and that he was ill. He made a clicking noise when he breathed too. Still not sure if that was his beak clicking, or lungs making that noise. My inner hypochondriac kicked in and I swore he had a respiratory infection and I was going to have to go through nursing the poor baby, more vet bills, and watching a second parakeet die - all within a month. The next day I finally noticed he ate his seed treat that I put right next to him and I was able to get him to drink some water by putting droplets on my finger and he licked them off! (That was really cute!)
I don't think he is sick anymore because the panting stopped. I'm just worrying about him, wondering how long it will take to feel completely comfortable. He won't preen me anymore, and other than licking my finger, he is still nervous around my hands. He will let me gingerly step him up though, which is good. I know he won't be Bo, but I just wish I could sit with him like her, or take him into the shower. I miss shower time with Bo the most right now. I feel like I'm comparing and I need to stop. What if I just wasn't ready. I LOVE having him around though. The hole in my chest feels a little less oppressive. I just need patience...please grant me patience!
I'm also feeling really guilty for separating him from his playmates at the pet store and leaving him at home by himself for 8 hours of the day during work. When I am home, I want to play with him, but again he gets nervous so I haven't really pushed the issue much...just letting him stay in his cage and feel safe. I also fixed the cage after he fell the first night. He's only a couple months old and me never having a baby or bought from a store, I thought he could just go right into a cage because he was totally weened and running around with his playmates in the pet store, eating seed and taking baths. But I wasn't really thinking that he wasn't used to a cage, with bars one must climb, heights, and hanging dishes. His enclosure at the store was plexi-glass with corncob on the bottom and a massive driftwood branch on the floor to climb all over. He kinda stumbled overnight from the highest perch, so Monday I went out and bought him corncob for the floor, and big wooden perch that I laid down there too, and I took Bo's old pirate ship ladder to help him get up to a slightly more elevated rope perch. I also bought floor dishes so he didn't have climb bars or perch higher to eat. I think he felt a little more comfortable once his location looked more like the pet store.
The biggest challenges I think I'm having is feeling bad, guilty, nervous, and worried. I need to stop that because logically I know I'm giving him a great life, but I just keep worrying that he's gonna get hurt and it's going to be my fault. I still feel responsible for Bo's death even though the vets assured me it was not the fall that killed her. Everything will work out fine, and I'm sure in a month or two he'll be my best bud. I just need to give it some time! It took me time for the hole in my chest to dissipate...it will take time for Pixel to acclimate...but it will all be just fine. What matters is that I LOVE Pixel already, and Bo knew that I will always have room in my heart for 1 more.