The type of finish you choose for your Quaker’s cage depends on your own personal taste and the decor or your home. I personally have found powder-coated finishes to be the best investment as they seem to last the longest, and they are available in a variety of colors although black and white continue to be the two most popular choices.
Cages with metallic finish such as brass and nickel plating are currently being coated with a clear, nontoxic epoxy to keep them from discoloring, and are also a practical choice. While most Quakers will not actually chip the paint or finish from their cages with their beaks, some spots will become worn from use, such as the favorite spot your Quaker chooses to hang from while playing with toys, or the bar he uses to hoist himself out of the cage.
Generally, when the cage is kept clean and dry a quality finish will last for many years, but some normal wear is to be expected, and some spots will chip after a period of time regardless of the care you give it. Another condition that will eventually affect the finish of your bird’s cage is the environment. In a humid climate, some rust is likely to develop. Solid brass, stainless-steel, and aluminum cages will not actually rust, but brass finishes may develop a green rust that is particular to copper, brass, and bronze.
The use of metal polish on any cage is strongly discouraged as it can be poisonous to birds. Cleansing with a mild soap and water and thorough rising on a regular basis should be sufficient to keep your Quaker’s cage in top condition for many years.