HELP!!! I need to train my dove! - Pigeon-Talk
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lancekatigbak lancekatigbak is offline
Posted 31st July 2005, 11:59 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3

HELP!!! I need to train my dove!

HELP!!! I really want to train my dove. She is already finger trained but will not come back to me. I bought her 9 months ago but I don't know how old she is. I want to learn how to train her to come back to me and maybe do some tricks. She is a white turtle dove and I use her for some magic tricks. But, I take good care of her nevertheless. THANKS IN ADVANCE!!!

Last edited by lancekatigbak; 1st August 2005 at 12:02 AM..
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lancekatigbak lancekatigbak is offline
Posted 1st August 2005, 12:00 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3

Oh yeah...

Please email your answer to or please email me if you have a reply. THANKS!!!
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TAWhatley TAWhatley is offline
Posted 1st August 2005, 09:30 AM
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Lake Forest, CA, USA
Posts: 21,209
Hi Lance and welcome to the Pigeon-Talk discussion board. Please don't take any chances with your lovely little dove. They can become very tame and make wonderful pets but aren't really the type of bird that should be expected to learn tricks or be able to free fly and then come home. Your dove needs to be kept safe from any possible dangers, should not be allowed outside to fly, and needs a calm and loving environment in order to be a happy bird. I'm sure others will be along with their thoughts, but these are mine.

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lancekatigbak lancekatigbak is offline
Posted 1st August 2005, 10:09 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3

What I really meant...

Hey Terry. The tricks were really not necessary. It was just that my aunt was telling me that one of my cousin's friends had a dove whom he could call and it would fly back to him. It would just be cool to have a dove who would fly back to you so that it can be left flying and can just be called and placed back in its cage. Would you know any way of training it that way?

Thanks again.


P.S. What are the opinions of the other moderators?
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Jiggs Jiggs is offline
Posted 5th August 2005, 10:13 AM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: RSA
Posts: 917
I am not sure if you will be able to do that (train it like a dog) as it seems older and I am not sure if birds respond to different voice commands.

The birds I do know that will come back to you and perch on your arm etc are hand reared from birth etc and will come to their owners. BUT I do not think that they will come on command but more because they want to be with you.

Thus I would be friendly and have a supply of nutricious treats with you and reward it every time it does perch on your shoulder/arm/hand and I think in time it will learn to trust you and come to you for the treat - especially if they can see it (the treat) in your hand etc. It should learn that the behaviour it does by perching gets rewarded and will/should come to you regularly!

Try that and let us know if it works!

P.S. I am starting with racers/homers and by whistling every time I feed I have assciated the whistle with food in the loft in their brains thus when I do whistle they will start flapping etc as they know they are going to be fed. Would it work if every time you gave the dove a treat do something specific like a whistle and it might? learn that whistle means "jump on hand to get a snack." I do not know but might be worth a try?

Last edited by Jiggs; 5th August 2005 at 10:15 AM.. Reason: spelling
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fantailgirl fantailgirl is offline
Posted 5th August 2005, 11:13 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Charlotte, MI
Posts: 118
Whistling is one of the best ways to train any animal with association to food. I trained my stallion to come to a whistle by whistling every time I fed him. Now he comes regardless of food. He knows it's a command that I expect to be upheld. With a pigeon, Jiggs has it right: it will associate the whistle with food. Don't expect too much out of a little dove though. Mammals have very complex communcation 'circuts' in thier brain, and respond very readily to just about any noise. I would give her a treat everytime she comes to you, no matter how often she does it.

It will take a little time for the bird to understand what it's doing right to deserve the food. First off, I would get it used to the sound you want to train it to. I know a whistle would scare my birds out of their wits if I just did it all of the sudden. After that, make sure you find a tasty treat that your dove will love. If you give it something that it doesn't like, you might have to start from square one again.

When she gets the picture, keep reinforcing it. Don't call her unless you have something to give her. It may very well be that if you start giving her treats, she'll just come to you, if you call her or not. Just make sure if you do call her, give her somthing every time.

This is tried and true for horses, rabbits, and a turkey. If a turkey could do it, a dove should!
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Last edited by fantailgirl; 5th August 2005 at 11:16 AM.. Reason: spelling
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