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4 Month Old Eclectus Not Eating


Sitting on the front steps
Real Name
Hi again! I've had my little guy for a week now. He's been super perky, happy and very social. I've been target training him along with teaching him to wave and spin on cue, he is very smart and I'm quite happy with our progress considering he was quite aggressive towards me when we first got him. He loves to snuggle on my chest.

The thing is, he hasn't actually had a proper meal yet. We give him a huge variety of different fruits in the morning and veggies at night, in all different textures and combinations, cold or warm, etc. Yet he won't consume much. His previous owner had him on a pellet and small bits of fruit diet, which I wanted to get him off ASAP but now I'm thinking that I need to take him off of it slowly, since absolutely nothing spikes his interest besides pomegranate seeds, little bits of corn, blackberries occasionally and alfalfa sprouts. He most certainly does not consume enough of any of them to fill him up. I know pellets are very very hated upon for ekkies, but do I have a choice? If I blend some fruit and veggies in with the pellets and dilute it with water that could possibly get him to eat? Honestly not hopeful though. But, it's been a week, I'm desperate. Worried he's going to literally starve himself, though he's very happy and playful otherwise. He won't even touch his mango, passionfruit, kiwifruit or watermelon... It's crazy and hurts my feelings, they are expensive and awesome dude! He'll search through his bowl, helicopter flicking everything away.

I have tried mixing in pomegranate with mashed sweet potato, normal potato etc, but he very much picks it out. I give him slices of watermelon and broccoli just to shred, since he likes that. I've been suggested putting pomegranate juice through his food, since it's his absolute most favourite thing, but 1. pomegranates are expensive and going out of season soon here in South Australia, I cannot afford to make my own, 2. Buying some from the store that's not pure and organic would have SO much sugar in it, 3. I've tried squishing the juice out of them and putting them over mushed warm veggies, and fresh cold ones, he doesn't care. He really likes the seed texture.

I've decided to stop training for the meantime since the sunflower seeds was almost all he was eating! I have purchased birdtricks seasonal feeding system books and am going to try out a blend tonight, doubt he'll touch it though, but worth a try! It'll be great for when I eventually do get him eating.

End question, is the pellet blend a good idea for the meantime instead of having him starve, as that was his previous diet and he is only 4 months old? And if so, is the brand TOPs the best for ekkies? They aren't meant to have any at all, so I'd like to get him the best brand to somewhat compensate. Thank you! Sorry for the long post. (I don't know the brand of pellets he was being fed from his previous owner and I do not have their contact currently.)


Rollerblading along the road
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Kelly Hill
Goodness! Okay first things first...

Weight and wait. Get his weight. Right now. If you didn't get it a week ago, get the last weight from the breeder. Is he fully fledged, and flighted? I'm not a good resource for developmental landmarks, but he should be weaned and flying at 4 months, I think. After fledging it should only be increasing until he's fully grown, and drops in weight will tell you something is wrong. If his weight isn't changing, you can relax and make little diet changes as you get more familiar with what he will eat.

Wait... So a week is a blink of an eye. It's going to take time to get familiar with him, him with you, and routines, and diet, and, and, and. Definitely slow down the diet shift. Yes, tops are great pellets. I keep them right next to the water dish in a little add on bowl so she can dunk to her heart's content. He really does need what he's accustomed to for the time being, though. Don't worry, there's time to shift his diet if he's been eating dyes and sugars and vitamin fortified pellets.

At this point your primary objective is to minimize stress and bond at his pace. You have lots of time to try whatever it takes to shift his diet. I found it very helpful to offer new things before the evening meal, and eating it in front of him, with him, and then on his own. It doesn't need to be a whole dish, and if he doesn't eat enough you have time to offer his standard portions after the taste tests. It's also helpful to offer those things at random, because a "no" is not necessarily a "never" its more of a "not right now, thanks." You'll find a few favorites that can be his standard fare while you continue adding and shifting to the ideal diet you're trying for. Sometimes it's a texture thing, sometimes flavor, and sometimes it's just an occasional thing... Here that's cranberries. Sometimes she'll eat them for weeks and not again for months.

Anyway, enjoy your firsts! Bond! Have fun! The diet will sort itself out over time. Start freezing in little cubes, and save it to add to his favorites a chunk or two at a time. Eat the rest and tell him what he's missing.