is your bird at risk?
Budgies, Amazons, cockatiels, and cockatoos are especially prone to obesity. It is believed to be because these birds are very active in the wild, but in captivity are usually sedentary and have unlimited access to food. Given the right circumstances, however, any bird can become obese.
causes of obesity
Wondering why your bird is overweight? Bottom line is he is taking in more calories than he is expending. Inappropriate diet is one cause – such as diets with too many nuts or seeds. Other causes include too much high fat "people food," too few fresh vegetables and fruits, and too many sweets and treats. Other contributors are boredom and lack of exercise. Even if you are feeding a high quality pelleted diet, some birds may overeat out of boredom and become obese.
Take steps right way to get your bird in better shape. Work with your avian veterinarian to formulate a lifestyle plan that includes a healthy diet, plenty of water, healthy, low-calorie treats, and more activity. To give him more activity, provide a larger cage, so he can move around more; use foraging toys so he has to work to get his food; and give him plenty of opportunities to exercise. Offer interactive cage toys so he'll expend energy piquing his natural curiosity. Give him supervised time outside the cage. Let him perch on your arm and move your arm up and down so he exercises his wings. See our exercise article for other creative ways to exercise your bird.
Keep your bird in tip-top condition, and he will be happier and healthier. This not only can prolong his life span, it can also improve your relationship with your bird.