Birds require a minimum of 8 hours or undisturbed sleep each night. … DO NOT leave your bird covered so that you can avoid interacting with him. Your bird’s cage cover should ONLY be used during sleeping hours. A cage cover is not a light switch that turns your relationship with your bird off and on at your convenience.
Establishing Proper Sleep Patterns
Most owners purchase bird cage covers to encourage sleep. Depending on the breed, many companion birds can require up to twelve hours of sleep for optimal health. Because most adults don’t require this much sleep, pet owners must create an environment conducive to sleeping despite the normal activities of daily living (such as lights or noises) that will inevitably take place in their homes. Because birds are sensitive to light, bird cage covers are especially helpful during the times of year in areas that have fewer hours of darkness.
Using bird cage covers is not cruel. Just like parents use white noise machines for infants and small children, or hang blankets over windows to darken their rooms, bird owners can use bird cage covers to help lengthen the sleep time for their birds. Bird cage covers not only help promote longer sleep periods, but owners can also use them to help shape when that time occurs. For example, noisy birds can wake up their owners before they are ready to face the day. The use of bird cage covers helps signal to birds when it is time for them to sleep.
Do Bird Cage Covers Really Help Regulate Temperature?
Bird cage covers can also be useful in maintaining a comfortable environment within cages. It is difficult for bird cage covers to actually increase the overall temperature within cages since the birds are not large enough to create the body heat necessary to make much of a temperature difference with all of the space between themselves and the bird cage covers. \
When NOT to use Bird Cage Covers
Bird cage covers should not be used if they appear to be causing birds distress. If owners use bird cage covers outside of the normal bedtime hours, or regularly as a form of punishment, their birds could become confused or depressed, negatively affecting their mental health.
**adapted from PetMD**
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