What are the steps to breeding and caring for doves as pets?




Doves are beautiful and gentle birds that make wonderful pets. Breeding and caring for doves can be a rewarding experience, but it requires careful planning and attention to their specific needs. In this article, we will explore the steps to successfully breed and care for doves as pets, ensuring their health and happiness.

Choosing the Right Dove Species

To begin your dove breeding journey, it is essential to choose the right dove species that suits your preferences and living conditions. There are various dove species available, each with its unique characteristics and care requirements. Some popular pet dove species include Diamond Doves, Ringneck Doves, and Zebra Doves. Research each species thoroughly to understand their behavior, lifespan, and specific needs before making a decision.

Creating the Ideal Dove Habitat

Once you have selected the dove species, it is crucial to provide them with a suitable and comfortable habitat. Doves require spacious cages or aviaries that allow for natural movements and flight. The enclosure should be made of safe materials, such as stainless steel or powder-coated wire, to prevent injury.

Ensure the cage has enough perches and branches for the doves to roost and exercise their feet. Place nesting boxes or baskets for breeding purposes, lined with soft materials like straw or shredded paper. Doves also enjoy bathing, so provide a shallow water dish for them to splash around.

Feeding and Nutrition

Proper nutrition is essential for the health and well-being of your doves. A balanced diet should consist of high-quality dove seed mix, supplemented with fresh fruits and vegetables. Offer a variety of seeds, including millet, canary grass, and safflower seeds, to provide essential nutrients.

Additionally, provide a calcium source like cuttlebone or mineral blocks to support strong eggshells during breeding. Fresh water should always be available, and it is advisable to use a shallow dish to prevent drowning accidents. Avoid feeding doves avocado, chocolate, caffeine, and onions, as these can be toxic to them.

Understanding Dove Breeding Behavior

Breeding doves require a basic understanding of their natural behavior. Doves are monogamous birds, meaning they mate for life. Once a pair is formed, they will engage in courtship behaviors, such as cooing, bowing, and mutual preening. Observing these behaviors will indicate that your doves are ready for breeding.

Creating the Right Breeding Environment

To encourage successful breeding, it is crucial to create the right environment for your doves. Provide a nesting box or basket that is dark, cozy, and secure for the female dove to lay her eggs. Ensure the nesting material is soft and comfortable, as it will help protect the fragile eggs.

Maintain a stable temperature within the breeding area, as extreme fluctuations can negatively impact the eggs' viability. Doves generally lay two eggs, which will hatch after an incubation period of around 14-18 days. Once the eggs hatch, both parents will take turns caring for the chicks.

Caring for Dove Chicks

Dove chicks are born naked and helpless, relying on their parents for warmth and nourishment. Avoid handling the chicks unless necessary, as excessive human interference can cause stress and abandonment. The parents will regurgitate food for the chicks, so ensure a nutritious diet is readily available.

As the chicks grow, they will develop feathers and slowly become independent. Provide a spacious area for them to exercise and learn to fly. It is essential to monitor their development, ensuring they are growing at a healthy rate and receiving proper nutrition.

Regular Health Check-ups

Maintaining the health of your doves is crucial for their well-being. Schedule regular visits to an avian veterinarian for check-ups, vaccinations, and any necessary treatments. Monitor their weight, feather condition, and droppings on a daily basis to detect any signs of illness early on. A healthy diet, clean environment, and regular exercise are key to preventing common health issues in doves.


Breeding and caring for doves as pets can be a fulfilling experience. By choosing the right dove species, providing a suitable habitat, offering a balanced diet, understanding their breeding behavior, and ensuring their overall health, you can create a harmonious environment for your doves to thrive. Remember, the well-being of your doves should always be a top priority, and if you need further guidance, consider visiting our website for expert advice and resources.

Julieth Bill

Hi, I'm Julieth Bill. Before I was a writer for the NBCpet.com blog I was known for inventive and unusual treatments of dogs, cats, bird, fish, snakes, horses, rabbit, reptiles, and guinea pigs. Julieth worked for major zoos around the world. He Also Receives Pets a Scholarship.

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