The Cost Of Owning A Lovebirds

Lovebirds May 26, 2020
Written by | Updated Sep 29, 2021
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The Cost Of Owning A Lovebirds

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The Cost Of Owning Lovebirds

When it comes to pet birds, Lovebirds are very recognizable. You always see them in pairs and they have brightly colored feathers. Lovebirds are a small type of parrot and there are nine different species. They are named for the loving, attentive bonds they form with their mates.

Lovebirds make wonderful pets because they are not as large as other parrots and because they are smart and entertaining. These birds can be kept singly, but they require a great deal of human interaction and plenty of toys.

Before you bring home a lovebird or a pair of lovebirds, it’s important to know what you’re getting into. Not only do you have to consider the 15-year commitment, but the cost to keep your new pet.

Here’s what you need to know about how much it costs to keep a pet lovebird.

Bringing Home A New Lovebird – One-Time Costs

  The lovebird is a wonderful pet, but these birds can be a little feistier than other popular options like parakeets and budgies. These birds bond closely with their mates, but they won’t stay tame unless you spend a lot of time with them.

In addition to knowing how to properly care for your lovebird, you need to make certain preparations before bringing him home. You’ll need to choose what kind of lovebird you want and shop around for a spacious cage. There are also certain supplies and accessories you’ll need to stock up on.

Here’s what you need to know about one-time costs for pet lovebirds:

Buying A Lovebird

The first decision you need to make is whether you’re going to keep a single lovebird or a pair. Bonded pairs are great because they keep each other company, but you run the risk of the birds not bonding as closely with you. If you choose to keep a single bird, know you’ll need to spend a lot of time taming it.

The second decision you need to make is what type of lovebird you want. There are nine different species, some of which are more popular as pets than others.

Here are some of the most popular pet lovebird sizes:

  • Fischer’s lovebird
  • Peach-faced lovebird
  • Masked lovebird

The cost to purchase a lovebird depends on several factors including the species and color you choose as well as the place you buy them.

The three species listed above are all fairly easy to find in pet stores, usually around $50. The cost may vary depending on the color, however. If you want a specific species or color, you may be better off purchasing directly from a breeder.

Another option is to adopt a lovebird.

Do some research to find a local or regional bird rescue or put your name on the list to be notified if your local shelter receives any birds. You should expect to spend $50 to $100 or more on the adoption fee but many shelters will send you home with the cage the bird arrived in.

Lovebird Cost by Species

Species Average Cost (Low) Average Cost (High)
Fischer’s $50 $100
Peach-Faced $50 $200
Masked $75 $150

Supplies And Setup

Lovebirds are small, measuring an average of 5 to 6 inches tall, but they can be active and vocal. These birds require plenty of space so they can fly as well as an assortment of toys.

When it comes to purchasing a lovebird cage, think about whether you’ll be keeping a single bird or a bonded pair. The minimum recommended cage size is 32x20x20 inches or 35 cubic feet of space per pair, though a larger cage is always better.

Cost varies depending on size and quality, but plan to spend $100 to $300 on your lovebird cage.

In addition to the cage itself, you’ll need an assortment of perches, toys, and bowls for food and water. Plan to spend $50 to $100 on these costs.

Once your lovebird cage is prepared, stock up on food to last you for at least a month. Lovebirds only eat about a tablespoon per day, so a 10-pound bag may last you several months and might only cost $10 to $15. You’ll also want to get some fresh fruits and veggies to have on hand.

The staple of your lovebird’s diet should be a high-quality commercial pellet that provides the nutrients your bird needs. Seeds can be included but should be used more as treats.

The final start-up cost to consider is the cost of a veterinary exam.

Your bird should be taken to the veterinarian within the first few weeks so you can establish a baseline for his health. Most vets aren’t well trained in bird care, so you’ll need to find an avian or exotics vet.

Plan to spend about $35 to $50 on that initial vet visit. If your lovebird needs lab testing or treatment, the additional cost will likely be over $100.

Lovebird Supplies and Setup

Cost Type Average Cost (Low) Average Cost (High)
Cage $100 $300
Cage Supplies $50 $100
Initial Food $10 $25
Spay/Neuter Cost N/A N/A
Initial Vet Visit/Vaccinations $35 $50
Total = $195 to $475  

Cost Of Lovebird Ownership – Annual Expense Breakdown

Once you bring your lovebird home, it may take a few days for him to become acquainted with his new environment. Give your bird time to settle in but then start interacting with him as much as possible to tame him and establish a bond.

As time goes on, your primary responsibilities will be to feed your bird and to provide veterinary care as needed. Here’s what you need to know about annual costs for pet lovebirds:

Annual Medical Expenses

Keeping your lovebird healthy is your biggest concern. On top of feeding him a healthy diet, you should also provide routine veterinary care in the form of annual vet visits.

Regular vet visits help you monitor your pet bird’s health so you can identify problems in the early stages when they are still treatable.

Here are some of the health problems to which lovebirds are prone:

  • Respiratory problems
  • Psittacine beak and feather disease
  • Polyoma virus infection
  • Yeast infection
  • Avian pox virus infection
  • Diarrhea
  • External parasites

You might be thinking about pet insurance to help offset these emergency costs. Unfortunately, most plans don’t cover birds and, if they do, the cost to pay your monthly premium could be more than the cost to take your bird to the vet, especially if he doesn’t need testing or treatment.

Instead of spending on pet insurance, consider putting what you’d pay in premiums into a savings account in case of emergencies.

Estimated Medical Costs for Lovebirds

Cost Type Frequency Average Cost
Veterinary Checkup Annual $35 to $50
Dental Cleaning N/A N/A
Vaccinations N/A N/A
Treatments Occasional $100+
Emergency Expenses Occasional $100+

Food And Supplies

The biggest recurring cost to keep a lovebird as a pet is food.

Your lovebird requires a commercial pellet diet because these are nutritionally balanced. Avoid seed mixes because most birds just pick out the seeds they like and avoid the rest. Plan to spend about $10 to $15 on a bag of pellets that will last several months.

On top of pellets, your lovebird should be fed small amounts of seed as well as fruits and vegetables. Overall, you’ll spend $15 to $20 per month per bird.

In addition to food, you should budget a few dollars each month for additional supplies 0-set aside about $5. Things like replacement bowls, new perches, and toys won’t be necessary every month, but it helps to budget for it anyway.

Food and Supply Costs for Lovebirds

Cost Type Frequency Average Cost
Food and Treats Monthly $15 to 20
Additional Supplies Monthly $5

Total Annual Cost Of Owning Lovebirds

Keeping lovebirds as pets is a big commitment of time, energy, and money. The birds themselves may not be pricey to purchase, but you’ll spend a few hundred dollars on the cage and accessories.

Keep in mind as well that these birds live up to 20 years, so it’s a long-term commitment.

Here’s a quick summary of the estimated annual cost for keeping lovebirds:

  • Purchasing/Adopting = $50 to $200
  • Cage and Setup = $195 to $475
  • Annual Veterinary Costs = $35 to $50
  • Monthly Food and Supplies = $20 to $25

The cost to keep lovebirds as pets will vary depending on several factors. First and foremost, your costs will be higher if you choose to keep a bonded pair rather than a single bird.

Factor in the cost when deciding among species and color as well. The remaining costs for cage, accessories, and food are fairly standard among small pet birds but it’s still worth doing your research to be prepared.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a lovebird cost?

Lovebirds are not the most expensive pet bird out there, but you should be prepared to spend between $50 and $100. The species and color you choose will affect the cost.

How much does it cost to neuter/spay a lovebird?

It is generally unnecessary to spay or neuter pet birds. Not only is the procedure very invasive, but it’s possible to prevent breeding through other means. By not providing nesting material or making certain changes to the cage, you can prevent breeding. You can also simply keep the sexes separated.

How much does a lovebird vet checkup cost?

Most veterinarians aren’t trained in bird care, so you may need to find an avian vet or an exotics vet. Expect to pay $35 to $50 for the exam and about $100 and up for additional testing and treatment.

How much does it cost to microchip a lovebird?

The cost to microchip a pet is usually a one-time fee of $35. This procedure is not recommended for lovebirds, however, because the microchip is typically embedded under the skin on furry pets.

How much does lovebird food cost?

Lovebirds eat a diet similar to cockatiels which consists primarily of nutritionally balanced pellets with small amounts of seed. Supplement your bird’s diet with fresh fruits and veggies and a little cooked egg as an occasional treat. Budget between $15 and $20 per month for food for a single lovebird.

How much does a lovebird cage cost?

While lovebirds only measure about 6 inches tall, they are active birds and need space to fly. If you keep a bonded pair, you’ll need a bigger cage than you would for a single bird. Budget at least $100 and up to $300 for your lovebird cage.

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Kate Barrington is avid pet lover and adoring owner of three cats and one dog, her love for animals has led her to a successful career as a freelance writer specializing in pet care and nutrition. She has been writing about pet care and pet products since 2010
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