Photography by Danny Fulgencio
“People kept seeing his picture and wanting to adopt him,” owner Jana Hipp says. “When they’d come to meet him, he would try to murder them.”
But a near-death experience transformed this tiny, bright green parrot with a murderous spirit into a tame household pet named Snarfblat who says, “I love you.”
When Snarfblat was on his way to an animal clinic, he stuck his head through a hole in a cat carrier and couldn’t get it out. Snapping at the veterinarians trying to help, they had no choice but to sedate him. Hipp, who works at the clinic, watched as Snarfblat slept off the anesthesia.
Awaking from slumber, clinic workers prepared for Snarfblat’s routine anger. Yet something was different.
“He woke up the next morning and was in love with me,” Hipp says. “I had no plans of getting a bird, but he adopted me.”
Three years later, Snarfblat thrives in Hipp’s home. He rides around on her neck and her cats’ backs without a care in the world. He chants, “I’m awesome” and “good boy” to himself in his cage.
“He’s an absolute weirdo,” Hipp says as Snarfblat tries to kiss her cheek through her mask.
Snarfblat still has a bit of his feistiness lurking behind his new personality. He’s bossy and a master lock-picker. He even locked one of Hipp’s cats in his birdcage for fun.
“We have to put a padlock on the cage door or else he’ll open it,” Hipp says.
Maybe the anesthesia did change him, but Hipp believes the parrot’s personality switch was rooted in trust.
“Wait a minute. This woman didn’t eat me,” Hipp says. “She saved me.”
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