There are several species of doves, but the process of hand training in these birds is pretty much the same for all species. Doves are gentle creatures; that's why they are an ideal pet even for children. With time, patience, and proper handling, you should be able to train your dove to make it a fantastic pet companion. If you just acquired your dove, it is suggested that you allow it to adjust first with its new environment before you start hand training. Start your training at least two weeks after acquiring the bird by following the simple steps below.

Five Easy Ways to Hand Train your Dove:

  1. Select a Training Area - It is important that you train your dove in a secured area with fewer distractions. Ensure that you close the windows and door in your selected training area. Also, turn off ceiling fans and other implements that can harm your doves. A bathroom is an ideal place to start hand training your dove because it has a very limited landing area, and it is enclosed that you can ensure the bird's attention. Doves are known to have a short attention span, so training them in an area with fewer distractions would be more effective.
  2. Condition with Treats - Doves love to eat, and you can use this to your advantage. Preparing a treat will help calm them as they familiarize themselves with your hand commands. Giving treats as a reward will help the birds associate your hand with food; thus it encourages them to follow through in training. Aside from conditioning your doves with treats, try to speak softly for it to be familiar with your voice. It might surprise you but praising your dove is an effective technique in hand training. They will feel it when you're happy or sad, so try not to train your dove if you're not in the mood or frustrated because it can stress them, and the training will be ineffective. Once you have your treat ready, gain your dove's trust by placing your hand near its cage and then placing your hand inside the cage for the dove to get accustomed to it.
  3. Stimulate with your Index Finger - Gently caress the dove's lower chest while in the cage to encourage it to step onto your finger. If the bird refuses to step up, try offering some treats using your other hand. Aside from caressing the dove's breast with your index finger, you can use a verbal command as well in order for the bird to recognize both your voice and hand.
  4. Bring the Dove Out of the Cage - Once the dove gets comfortable resting on your finger, you can slowly remove it from its cage while it is still on your finger. It is practically normal that the dove would fly off your finger the first time you try to remove it from its cage. This only means that the bird is not yet prepared to step out of its comfort zone. If the bird is not yet ready, do not force it and just try the next day again.
  5. Redo Training with the other hand - It doesn't follow that once you've trained your dove with one hand, it will automatically get accustomed to the other. The same steps have to be done in order for it to get familiar with your other hand. But if you've successfully hand-trained your bird the first time, the repeat process should be practically easy.

We are a small-scale local dove breeder based on Long Island, New York, for a considerable time. We develop our growing dove breeding business from our backyard, which means that without intermediaries, we sell doves that we have raised since they were babies.