Healthy Food for your ParakeetThe native parakeet grew up in the grasslands of Australia, living in eucalyptus trees. Those grasslands provided the parakeets what they needed to live. They would eat the fresh greens, the fruits and berries they found there, and the seeds that came in the fall.
So while parakeet seed is ONE part of what a parakeet's diet should have in it, it is definitely not ALL, and a parakeet raised solely on parakeet seed will have some form of malnutrition. Even the fortified seeds you find in stores are usually fortified with a powder sprinkled on the outside of the seed. Since a parakeet hulls its seeds before eating them, leaving behind that outer shell, the fortification does little good.
The Association of Avian Veterinarians recommends the following diet for a parakeet:
50% cooked beans, whole wheat bread, cooked rice, pasta, and seed
45% fresh broccoli, carrots, yams, spinach, dandelion greens, other green/orange fruits and veggies
5% eggs, tuna packed in water, well cooked meat
Parakeets are lactose-intolerant and cannot eat a lot of dairy product. Also, parakeets are HIGHLY allergic to chocolate and avocados and should never be given either. Junk food such as pretzles, potato chips, etc. aren't good for a parakeet either! You can feed a parakeet fresh fruit such as apples and cherries, but be careful about the seeds as those have toxins in them. Lettuce is fine, but it really has no nutrients in it. It's better to give them other, healthier greens.
Parakeets do NOT overeat. If anything, people tend to give them too little food, thinking a seed cup is full when really it's just full of the hulls of the seeds the parakeet has already eaten. Be sure to refill your parakeet's food supply daily and to give him or her lots of fresh foods too.
Just like most people feed their cats and dogs "kibble" (processed pellets) instead of their natural foods (rabbits, rats, etc.) some people also feed their parakeets "kibble". The kibble is nutritionally balanced and a great way to meet all of the parakeet's food requirements easily. Some parakeets love kibble, others are convinced they want to eat "real food". Whichever way you go, be sure to give your parakeet a diet that is balanced and healthy.
You'll find millet in many pet stores. This is very high in fat and is a treat for parakeets. It should only be fed to them occasionally. Parakeets in the wild certainly did not have millet year-round!
Healthy Water for your Parakeet
Cat / Parakeet Info Homepage
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