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What Should I Feed My Pet Bird?

Jun 17, 2013

birds-eating-food-390[1]IMPROPER FEEDING IS THE CHIEF CAUSE OF DISEASE AND DEATH IN PET BIRDS!!

A balanced diet consisting of a formulated pellet along with a variety of foods such as fruits, vegetables, beans and pasta is highly advised.

 


PELLETS:

FRUITS, VEGETABLES, BEANS, AND PASTA: These are a part of a balanced diet for a bird, but should never be over 25% of the diet. Again, it is important to wash the food.  Beans and pasta should be cooked thoroughly before offered.  Feed a variety and be sure to remove uneaten portions within a few hours to prevent spoilage.

THOROUGHLY: Canned fruits should be avoided due to the high sugar content, which tends to cause diarrhea. Suggested fruits and vegetables include oranges, apples, green beans, peas, corn, etc. Various juices and nectars may also be given.

GREENS:

ANIMAL PROTEIN: This is most important in carnivorous species of birds, which may be actually fed mice but all birds have a protein need. This may be met by feeding boiled eggs (yolk, white, and shell crumbled together), cottage cheese, milk, or peanut butter.

SEED:

VITAMINS: Most vitamin requirements will be met if your bird is fed a pelleted diet.  However some birds may require additional supplementation, such as Vitamin A.  Harrison’s Sunshine Factor is an excellent Vitamin A supplement and is available at our office. Of special concern are vitamins A, D3, and B Complex.

MINERALS: Most pelleted diets will meet daily mineral needs, however some birds may require additional calcium supplementation, such as egg-laying hens.  Calcium supplementation may be offered in the form of powdered calcium added to the food, or as a prescription calcium supplement.  Please contact us to discuss your bird’s calcium requirements.  Cuttlebones, mineral blocks, oyster shell, or egg shell are also commonly given as a calcium source, however it is not known how well cuttlebone in particular is absorbed.

Many birds develop poor eating habits and border on malnutrition. One method of adding variety and interest is to include table food. Fruits, vegetables, pasta, and beans are acceptable table foods.  Avoid foods containing caffeine, such as chocolate or coffee, avocado, or large quantities of garlic or onions as these are toxic to birds.  Further more, avoid excessively salty or unhealthy foods as these are unhealthy for birds too!

BASIC RULES FOR FEEDING BIRDS:

Written by Dr. Julie Yeager