Things You’ll Need:
* pellet food
Start the conversion as early as possible. If your bird was raised on seed, start converting within a few days of bringing the bird home.
Get a good quality pellet that is the right size for the bird you have. Make sure It has healthy components, and not too many chemical additives.
Research what fruits and veggies are safe for your breed of bird. Try to have these available to introduce to your pet.
Each day, feed the bird a little less seed, and add a bit of pellet. You should not give your bird a single dish filled with food for the day. Give them small amounts several times a day. Over time, continue to give less seed and more pellet.
If your bird refuses the pellet, try hand-feeding it to them, “pecking” at it with your finger, or pretending to eat it yourself. All of these can help the bird see the new item as food.
Once your bird accepts pellet as a daily meal, offer seed as a treat for good behavior during training, or as a once or twice a week snack.
Cut fruit and veggies into small pieces and offer them in a new dish (not their food dish), each day. “Pecking” at the food with your finger, or allowing the bird to see you eating it, will encourage them to try it. Experiment with different fruits and veggies, in different size pieces until you learn what they like. Some like large bits, others small, some will prefer a mash.
If you have a hard time getting the bird to eat fruits and veggies, try chopping them very small, and drying them. Many birds don’t like wet foods, but will quickly take to dried foods.
Be patient! Getting a bird off seed can be a trying task, but it’s well worth it to keep your pet healthy and happy for many years to come.
Image: © Briana Blair – My Lutino Cockatiel Stoli leaning in for food