Picky Eater

by Sunshine

I tried feeding my bird all type of veggies, pretty much anything that's healthy for him he will not eat it,no matter how its mixed, raw, stimmed or cooked. When I adopted him his prior parents told me not to feed him pellets/seed from the petstores because he looses all his feathers, me trying anything and everything went and bought him a bag of Kaytee parrot food.

He was happy but within days I noticed he started to loose his feathers in about 4 days he lost a total of 20, I was on tears! I immediately stop the feeding and bathe him every day with Aloe Vera juice and his fine now.My question is how can I get him to eat?

Comments for Picky Eater

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Oct 23, 2008
Helping your picky parrot
by: The Vet

The worst pellet you can feed is KT. There is lots of artificial ingredients, especially preservatives, and it is known that this cause feather damaging behaviors in some birds.

What kind of bird do you have? I am guessing an Eclectus, maybe an African grey?

You should feed Harrison's pellets. This is an organic food and will not cause the feather damaging behaviors. Pellets are the only way to guarantee that your bird is getting a complete and balanced diet. This should be 80% of the diet and the other 20% can be any treat you can get him to eat.

Here is another response I gave to an owner of a plucking bird. This pertains to your bird too.

Feather plucking is a complicated problem, and often times is not curable, unless a cause can be found. A cause can only be found if you have some diagnostic work performed by a veterinarian.

I recommend that you first take your bird to see an avian veterinary specialist. You should have a thorough work up done, including blood work, cultures, viral screening and possibly skin biopsies.

In the meantime there are some things that you can do to improve his chances of successful treatment. First, make sure he is on a good diet. The best you can feed is Harrison?s High Potency pellets. This should make up 80% of the diet. The remaining 20% can be any treat, but focusing on fresh vegetables.

Second, you should bathe him every day, alternating days with water, and Avi-x Bird Rain. The day you bathe with the water you should really wet him thoroughly. However, keep in mind that if he has no feathers he is going to get cold, so keep him warm with a heating pad on the cage, or a space heater, or keep him in the bathroom until he is mostly dry. Even when he is not wet he will be cold, so keeping a heating pad on his cage at all times may be beneficial.

Third, you should teach your bird how to forage. There are many ways to do this. You can make things yourself, or by toys and feeders that help. The Captive Foraging DVD is great to teach you about foraging. Foraging toys are good too.

Fourth - As a general rule your bid should be drinking from a water bottle because they are more sanitary. In addition, with a water bottle you can dispense this medication. It has helped about 30% of my patients improve or stop plucking altogether.

Fifth, give your bird a full spectrum light. This will be very beneficial.

Hope this helps. Please let me know.

Dr. B

Editors note: You can purchase these items here at our Discount Parrot Supply Store:


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