I'm not sure what is up with our 'tiel, Sisco. He is about 15 years old and we adopted him from close friends of ours about a year ago. He is typically a "grumpy old man" as we like to put it. He prefers being on my fiance to me and only usually wants head petting when he's "sticky" (pin feathers) from a molt.
Tonight, he wanted to sit on MY hand and was BEGGING for head petting and went even beyond that by putting his whole head in my hand so that I was cupping him and petting his back. This went on, much to my amazement, for several minutes. Then he kind of fluffed, started preening, and then, with his tail pointed down, rubbed his butt back and forth on my hand
I moved my hand so that he wasn't just sitting on my finger, but in my hand, and he continued rubbing his butt back and forth on it for about ten seconds. He didn't pick at his butt as if it were irritated or had something stuck to it... He continued to want cuddling after that too.
I am SO freaked out. I wish I could believe that he just finally decided I wasn't so bad and wanted to cuddle, but I know this isn't normal!
Is the butt rubbing back and forth a cockatiel's way of h*mping or is there something seriously wrong with him?
The nearest avian vet is over 3 hours away from me, so I'd rather not have to drag him that far and cause him stress if it isn't necessary. Any help would be... helpful!