When a friend asked me to babysit her pet parakeet I worried about Gracie's reaction to the house guest. Especially since this parakeet needs to fly around every day and Gracie often chases birds in the backyard.
I planned to carefully introduce my dog to the parakeet (while it was IN it's cage!) so she could become familiar with the bird's scent. Then I figured I'd have to pull her away from the cage and separate her and the bird the whole time the bird stayed with us.
Even when the parakeet flew around the house Gracie pretty much ignored it. Only when the parakeet scuttled around on the floor did Gracie seem to notice it. I was glad to see the parakeet wasn't afraid of Gracie but I didn't think it was a good idea (for the parakeet's sake) to let it think dogs were perfectly okay to chum around with. When the parakeet was out of its cage I made an effort to keep it away from Gracie but one time it landed on my dog's back (while she was eating!!!) and one time on her head (while she laying down, resting). Both times Gracie quickly shrugged it off --- yet she did it slowly and gently; as if to say, "Get this bird off me please."
Too many dog owners expect their pets to have unreasonable control of their instincts. They expect their dogs to behave like humans and they end up getting mad when their dogs behave like dogs.