Why Your Budgie Is Walking Side To Side In Its Cage

Why is my budgie walking side to side?Hang out with a budgie for a little while, and you will surely notice their walking and movement patterns which will lead you to understand and answer the question of why your budgie is walking side to side.

Why is my budgie walking side to side? Reasons your budgie may be walking side to side include excitement, a way of showing they are bored, or worst of all an indicator of issues with his or her health.

Continue to read to learn what that means in detail and what you can do to calm down your budgie!

More on Side to Side Budgie Walking

If you have ever seen your beloved bird pacing back and forth or walking side to side inside their cage, you might think of it as strange behavior or one that prompts concern or even fear.

This is mostly a normal behavior, but it is not one that you should ignore by any means. Let’s expand on some of the reasons you might see your budgie going side to side.

  • Boredom – everybody gets bored at work or school once in a while, so we do things to alleviate it-tap pencils, daydream, gaze out the window. Your budgie alleviates his boredom by walking side to side. Be sure you play with him and give him lots of toys to stay entertained.
  • Excitement – just like how we humans might do a little dance when we get excited, walking side to side or pacing back and forth shows how excited he is that you are there. Your bird may pace back and forth on the perch or even climb around on the bars as a means of getting your attention.
  • Sickness – Pacing back and forth in his or her cage can signal that your budgie is feeling ill. Be sure that you monitor him for loss of appetite, the plucking of feathers, or thirst that is out of the ordinary. Talk to a vet if you are unsure. If you fear that your budgie might already be sick, we recommend reading our article on dying symptoms in budgies.

What Else Could Be the Reason?

The above three instances are just a few reasons why your budgie might be walking side to side. Birds are complex and beautiful creatures, and just like humans, there are a few different reasons why they might be going side to side in their cages.

We have already discussed that budgies get super excited when they see their owners.

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    Keep in mind that budgies develop a deep bond with their owners, so don’t be surprised when your feathered friend acts excitable when you come around. Be sure to return the joy and acknowledge his excitement by offering to take him out.

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      Going stir crazy might be another reason your budgie is feeling fidgety. After all, think of us humans.

      When it’s a nice day outside, and we are stuck indoors at work or school, we anxiously count down the hours till it’s time to go. Your budgie just wants to get out and enjoy the world just as you do!

      Give him a break from the monotonous nature of being caged up. Cages are safe and secure places to rest and eat, but your budgie would like to stretch his or her wings and see what’s going on outside the cage for a few hours each day.

      Boredom is one we already brought up, but it’s a good idea to expand upon it. Just as you do not want to be stuck in an empty room with no means of entertainment or fun activities to do, your budgie does not want to be bored in his or her cage.

      So, while you are away, make sure you supply your budgie with fun toys that keep him busy. Change out the toys every few days so they don’t get boring. Providing a little mental stimulation will make everybody feel happy and relieved.

      Make sure that you get the right toys for your budgie. In most cases, mirrors are pretty bad for budgies – they can get obsessed with them. We explain why mirrors are bad for budgies in detail in this article here.

      A good toy for a budgie has the right size and is made of non-toxic material. In our budgie toy guide we explain exactly what you need to look out for when getting toys for your budgie. We also show you 15 great budgie toys there. Click here to read our budgie toy guide!

      Why is my budgie walking up and down in the cage?

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        Other Budgie Behaviors

        Curious about some of the other movements and actions that your budgie is doing? Check out our other budgie behavior indicators below. Which ones do you see your budgie doing most often?

        Budgies in Pairs

        Budgies just love to be with one another. A pair, no matter the genders of the birds, will act as a tiny flock. They will groom, chatter, socialize and act as though they would in the wild.

        It is very rare that a budgie does not need or want a companion. In fact, if you want a healthy budgie, there is rarely a way around getting a companion for your bird. Seriously, in this article, we tell you why it is so important to have a companion for your budgie.

        In some unusual situations, pairs will not get along very well.

        They might fight, or they might stay on either side of the cage as a means of avoidance. They will not groom each other, and they won’t sit and chat at one another. If you notice this behavior, immediately separate the birds.

        If you are not sure about your budgies’ behavior, you should read this article: Are my budgies fighting or playing? This article tells you in detail how to tell if your budgies are fighting and what you can do to stop that.

        Budgie Bells

        Budgies love their toys, but this is very true of budgies who are alone in their cages. A bell is something that moves and makes noises, and so it is a favored item among budgies everywhere.

        Tapping the bell and making it jingle may become part of your bird’s regular playtime rituals, and it can sometimes get to be an obsession. If this is the case, your budgie needs a friend. Removing that bell may make him yearn for it, but he will adapt and learn to play with another item.

        You can rotate out his toys so that he does not become obsessed with one single object. However, it is a better idea all around to just introduce another budgerigar so that he can have a friend and shift his love to another being instead of an object.

        • Chewing – Budgies really love to chew things. It is natural behavior that they must satisfy in one way or the other, just as dogs like to chew on toys or cats like to scratch.

        Be sure that you provide your budgie something they can chew on. One great thing you can give them is balsa wood, or even a stick or wood perch. Cuttlefish is not chewable. It simply crumbles into a powder as your bird pecks at it.

        How Can My Budgie Exercise?

        Your budgie walks back and forth for many reasons, and one is to alleviate boredom. It is also a way of getting exercise and engaging in physical activity. Just like us humans need to work out regularly to feel our best and stay healthy, a budgie needs some exercise too out of his cage.

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          Your budgie has his own way of doing this. You might notice that in the morning your budgie flaps his wings like crazy when he is on his perch. Their feet may leave the perch and they flap on and on.

          This is their way of warming up and has nothing to do with attitude or feeling aggressive. It’s similar to how us humans stretch and reach around after we have been sleeping or sitting for a while. You might even hear chirps as part of this exercise.

          You can help your budgie exercise by letting him fly around the room each day. Budgies love to climb around their cages, too-if you see them hanging from the roof or crawling up the sides like Spider-Man, it’s normal and cute budgie behavior!

          Related Questions

          Why Is My Budgie Puffed Up? A budgie that sits around with its feathers all puffed up is normal. When budgies keep their feathers open slightly, the air gets trapped and warm air gets in between their feathers. This is like us humans pulling a blanket over ourselves as a means of keeping the heat and warmth close to our bodies.

          How Do I Know If My Budgie Is Happy? Watch for your budgie to do the normal bird activities that denote happiness-that is, chewing on things like balsa wood, flying around, or playing with his toys. Birds will also nibble on their food throughout the day.

          Watch for frequent trips to the watering device and the pellet dish. And also use your ears. If you hear your budgie making chirps, whistles, and singing noises, these are the signs of a happy bird. It’s cute to hear them chirp along with music playing, too.

          What Does It Mean When Budgies Kiss? When budgies become great friends, they tap their beaks together in a sort of kiss. They will then go on to preen each other’s face and head as a show of love. Budgies are part of a flock and care deeply about bonding and being part of the lives of the birds around it. These birds will wash, eat, and groom together.

          In Conclusion

          Budgies walk side to side for any number of reasons, the top three being boredom, the excitement of seeing their owner, or because their health may be failing. The best thing to do is know your budgie and keep a close eye on him so you will know when something is up.

          Photo of author

          Gaurav Dhir

          Gaurav is an animal enthusiast. He lives in beautiful Ontario with his energetic family. As a part of his work at beautyofbirds.com, he has been working with ace parrot trainer, Cassie Malina to understand bird behavior and learn more about how he can train his feathered companions.

          5 thoughts on “Why Your Budgie Is Walking Side To Side In Its Cage”

          1. I have a budgie and sadly I fear letting it out the cage as i have 2 cats. I would love to give Arthur a little more freedom but am scared he’ll fly off as I’ve never let him out and his wings aren’t clipped. The other problem is protecting him from the cats. He has a cage that has a cage stand and I let his cage outside in the day if its a nice day out.

            He also had a friend who passed away in June and im scared he might be a little lonely.

            Any advice would be appreciated.

            Kind regards

            • Hey Elaine,

              thank you for your comment!

              One possibility I see here is letting your budgie fly in a room where the cats can’t get in. Can you prevent your cats from getting in the “budgie room”?

              The next thing you could do is getting a huge aviary that you can place in your house. This way your budgie could fly all day – protected from your cats. Do you have enough space for that?

              Most budgies grieve when they lose their partner and it is best to keep them in groups or flocks since they are are so social. So I recommend getting another budgie. You can read in our article here why budgies need companions.

              Hope this helps, Elaine!

              Whenever you have questions, just leave a comment anywhere on this website and I will do my best to get back to you quickly!



          2. Hi there,
            My 11yr old daughter has just bought a baby budgie. Prob 8-10 Wks old.

            It is totally untrained. If you could send some tips to help her that would be fantastic. It dosent know how to step up or anything. And because its been raised on seed we can’t seem to bribe it with peanut butter or any treats. As it only knows seed as food.

            Many thanks bec

          3. Introduced new Budgie 4 days now. Does not seem to be bonding with my spoilt boy who has become quiet and less active. New bird spends lot of time pacing side to side o n perch. Both eating well

          4. My new budgie got out of his cage and bumped into a few things, when I finally caught him he bit me and was very agitated.
            He is not hurt but now he is frightened of me! He rejects my finger and I fear I’ve lost his trust forever!
            How should I proceed!


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