Bird talks and dances his way into rescues heart and history

Buddy the Cockatoo is now a Danville Area Humane Society staple

DANVILLE, Va. – A little bird with a big personality has made a local animal shelter his permanent home despite being one of the most inquired about pets from those looking to adopt.

Buddy, the cockatoo was once a rescue, but now is a permanent resident at the Danville Area Humane Society.

“Buddy is a hoot, let me tell you,” said Executive Director Paulette Dean. “Buddy is a hoot."

All who walk in the door of the center are greeted by Buddy saying, “Hello!”

“He's actually quite funny. When you come in, he'll say, ‘hello’, and if you don't answer he'll say, ‘hello,” Dean said a little louder. “And if you don't answer the third time he'll say hello. He gets louder and louder."

Buddy now serves a pseudo staff member and shelter mascot.

When he’s not greeting visitors, he’s putting on a show for the ladies, dancing on the counter. His antics keep staff, volunteers and visitors entertained, and have been well documented on the center’s Facebook page.

Through his videos, he attracts visitors to come in to meet other adoptable pets.

Buddy does NOT like to be ignored, and he makes that very clear! What's something your pets do to grab your attention?

Posted by Danville Area Humane Society on Thursday, April 23, 2020

“They all know buddy. Buddy has quite the little following on our Facebook page,” Dean said.

But, Buddy isn't going anywhere. He was spoken for long ago.

Dean said a little over 13 years ago, Buddy was one of a number of birds the Danville Area Humane Society saved from the breeding trade by purchasing them at an auction after a large breeder went out of business.

"He was scheduled to go to a bird sanctuary in Indiana, and the morning he was going to leave with the other birds, we were all crying because we had just all fallen in love with our Bud-man’."

His official owner is shelter manager April Hogan, who’s been with Danville Area Humane Society for 26 years.

Buddy loves her and he calls her name all day. "April! April! April! April,” Dean said.

Buddy is so attached, Dean said staff members always worry when Hogan goes on vacation.

"So we took a picture of April and printed it out and hung it up beside Buddy on his cage. He stood by her picture the entire time she was gone,” Dean said.

Buddy the Cockatoo and April (Copyright 2020 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

Whenever Hogan retires, Buddy will retire with her. Her name is listed as the official owner on his adoption papers.

This is the Danville Area Humane Society’s 40th year caring for animals, and Buddy certainly has helped bring awareness about the center’s mission.

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