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bird refuses new food..help!!

je0409

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my gcc has been on a diet of zupreem natural pellets and chop basically since i got her (about 5 months). she really likes the pellets and tolerates the chop (more so if i add egg food or a small dollop of unsweeted apple sauce). the problem is i found out that pellets that have the main ingredient as a filler like ground corn are not really doing anything for you bird. so i decided to swtich to tops pellets for small hookbills. the problem now is that she would literally rather starve than eat these pellets. i've tried mixing in some of her old pellets or treats to ger her to eat the new pellets but she just picks out everything but the new pellets. i've also tried hand feeding it to her like a treat and that worked a little at first but i think now she's realized im just handing her the same pellets that are in the bowl so she's over it. i really REALLY don't want to cave on this because i spent a good amount of money for this food ($13 for the food and $15 for shipping) and i dont wanna just toss 3lbs of food. i am very frustrated with her and for now we are not on speaking terms but i know i will give in and forgive her soon so please give me tips before i cave. thanks in advance!!
 

conureluv

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@ParrotNuts @MR. Mango both have conures, they could help. Have you tried the small increments method? Maybe try giving majority TOPS, a little bit of the old one and some chop. Decrease the amount SLOWLY every day and see if she touches the new pellets, eventually she’ll get that’s what her food will consist of daily. This is just a thought, if this is not advised, speak up @ParrotNuts @MR. Mango !
 

Shezbug

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Give her back her old pellets which are generally considered just fine by most bird owners... some pellets are better than no pellets at all- it takes many people a long time to switch from one brand to another... it’s not really something that you just change as many birds refuse new foods or pellets.

@Mizzely has some awesome information on her site that she will hopefully link for you.

My birds won’t eat tops- I didn’t like it either... my dogs wouldn’t even eat the dropped tops pellets :laugh:
 

conureluv

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Give her back her old pellets which are generally considered just fine by most bird owners... some pellets are better than no pellets at all- it takes many people a long time to switch from one brand to another... it’s not really something that you just change as many birds refuse new foods or pellets.

@Mizzely has some awesome information on her site that she will hopefully link for you.

My birds won’t eat tops- I didn’t like it either... my dogs wouldn’t even eat the dropped tops pellets :laugh:
My Bailey sneaks into my room just to eat the spare dropped pellets LIKE A PIG! :feedpigeons:
 

MR. Mango

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I suffered a similar issue with my conure, mango, I agree with the increments but you may also want to try making birdie bread using a blend of the new and old pellets to build up a taste for them, or mix them in with the fresh food. And since ur taking such a large leap from a tasty sugary pellet to a bland healthy one try taking a middle step converting to something like lafebers which is still better than crappy pellets but not the best, and since they have some molasses they still taste good, try from there to convert to tops or Harrison’s, I used this technique with mango from fruitblend supreme to lafebers and finally to Harrison’s
 

Mizzely

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Birds eat grains.

Corn is a grain.

Corn in a cat food? Yes, I agree it is a filler. Corn in a bird food is a biologically appropriate ingredient. Can you get a pellet without corn? Absolutely. The best part about corn based pellets? They are widely available, cheap to produce and thus buy, and are tasty so our birds actually eat them! Corn based "crappy pellets" have saved the life of my bird, and have extended the lifespans of countless other birds because of their affordability, availability, and palpability!

Food could be grown in the Amazon itself and still be meaningless if the bird doesn't eat it!

 

Mizzely

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To add to this - you know what ingredient I think is a cheap filler for bird foods? Alfalfa. Guess what TOPS is mostly made out of? I've never seen a bird eat alfalfa.


:soapbox:
 

Shezbug

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To add to this - you know what ingredient I think is a cheap filler for bird foods? Alfalfa. Guess what TOPS is mostly made out of? I've never seen a bird eat alfalfa.


:soapbox:
Marketing is amazing don’t you think? Lol
 

tka

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See if any of the advice here helps: Converting Parrots to a Healthier Diet - Tips

That said, I can't convince my bird that TOPs is food. It's frustrating, especially when the food is expensive, but ultimately food is a negotiation between us and our bird(s). I feed Roudybush and P15; perhaps not what I initially set out to feed, but it's more important that my bird is eating a colouring-free and sweetener-free pellet that she readily eats and does well on.
 

Mizzely

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Things you can do with the pellets she won't eat:

- Grind them up and use in bird bread or as a "seasoning" on chop
- Use them in foraging toys (sometimes if a bird has to work at it, they will be more likely to eat it)
- soak with juice to make a paste
 

conureluv

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Here’s what I am doing with my bird. I feed him the pellets as a snack when he’s out of the cage, and then do the small increments method during feeding time. So far we’re almost fully converted!
 

Tiel Feathers

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Since Tops does not contain enough vitamin D for your bird, if you do switch, make sure you supplement with vitamin D or that your bird can go outside every day to get unfiltered sunlight.
 

The_Mayor

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Since Tops does not contain enough vitamin D for your bird, if you do switch, make sure you supplement with vitamin D or that your bird can go outside every day to get unfiltered sunlight.
Agreed. My birds actually liked the Tops quite well, but since they get really zero natural sunlight, I felt it was important to switch them over to something that I could be sure had adequate vit. D.

Fortunately for me, my birds never got the memo that pellets are yucky, so it hasn't been hard to find pellets that do have D and that they like.
 
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