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NEED HELP RAISING MY COCKATIELS

Cmelo

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so about 2 days ago I was given a 5 and 6 week old cockatiel. I’ve never hand fed bird but I did have a little experience with them. Both these cockatiels were also never handfed . They are playful but they are stubborn . I’ve read that for the 6 week one I should be giving him about 8 cc 2 to 3 times a day which I thought shouldn’t be hard but he does not let himself at all . The younger one on another note is easier to handle but also is kinda stubborn. I’ve had mixed answers with some people saying I should make sure they eat and others saying not to if they are rejecting the food . They also don’t beg for food either . Does anyone have tips ? Or how I know I fed them enough .
 

Emma&pico

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:hello: And welcome
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@Zara brilliant for baby help hopefully she comes along to help
 

Cmelo

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One on the right is the older one weighing 71 grams and the left is the younger one weighing 72 grams
 

Zara

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71 grams and the left is the younger one weighing 72 grams
With those weights, yes they should be eating about 7.2 per feed. They eat 10% of their body weight at each feed and can feed a little over, so 8 is a good amount.

Do not force them to eat, but it is important they eat. So offer formula on a small spoon, offer some mashed warm veggies, soaked pellets, dry pellets, seed, millet, sprouts, whatever you need to get them eating anything.
Monitor their weights, if they drop drastically, they will need to be gavage fed with a crop tube (a vet or professional will have to teach you how to do this in person).

Here is a great article with weaning tips and advice, it is in PDF form so you can download it or print it off to have to hand:
 

Cmelo

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Thank you. Ima most likely gonna have down the gavage fed road since seeing how they react when I try to feed them . How would I go about that . Just go visit any bird vet?. And I know it should be common sense but what’s a drastic weight cut for them or when should I start being concerned ?
 

Zara

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10%. A gram or two is not concerning, but when it is over 5, it starts to become worrysome.

Yes, any bird vet should be able to help. If your struggling to get in, you could try reaching out to an experienced breeder see if they could meet with you to help (they might not want you visiting them or their birds, less so taking your birds there). Best is the vet though. Don't request "an appointment", be clear what the problem is and the birds ages when ringing up. If there's a long waitt you could ask they contact you if there's any cancellations.
 

Cmelo

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UPDATE: good news the older cockatiel got the hang of it and now tries to even steal her sisters food, but now the smaller one is giving me a fight . Maintaining weight for now until my vet visit on Monday since the doc canceled on me last minute today. They suggested tube feeding her but I told her that’s what I wanted to see in person before doing myself .
 

Zara

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That's a good update :tup:

Remember that tube feeding is a last resort. If you can get them eating off a spoon or from a syringe, that is better. They will be weaning soon, and that tranistion will be easier if you are not crop tube feeding. But it is definitely good to learn how to do it.
 

Cmelo

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update #2 :

So I went in for my vet visit and almost all my answers were half answered or maybe they thought I knew as much as them . Basically what I was told was to continue to keep syringe feeding since it’s safer then tube feeding since it’s the most dangerous. But I was left unsure about how I should go about the schedule. I feed them about 3 times a day roughly 6 hrs apart but I mainly base myself off there weight for example the older bird could be at 71 on empty and 78 when full . But by the 2nd feeding if it’s still around 74 I tend to question if it still has food and I don’t wanna make the mistake and over feed . should I continue to feed it or should I wait until it’s empty again?



He also told me to take out all my seeds and millet from the cage which I think keeps them from dropping weight fast . He said it works if I want to wean them fast but harder in the long run if I want to get them on a healthier diet . They’re always picking at the seeds which I know they’re eating so wouldn’t that make them lose weight if I take them out?
 

Zara

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I was left unsure about how I should go about the schedule.
If your bird weighs 71g on empty crop, offer 7-8 CC per feed. If you see they're not eating most of it, drop the middle feed and feed just morning and night.

He said it works if I want to wean them fast but harder in the long run if I want to get them on a healthier diet
That is kind of true, but personally I have weaned onto seeds and my birds all eat pellets and veg. I think it is important to have pellet available too, as well as offer veggies right after the formula feeds.
You can also try giving the bird these foods from your hand, or eating together.
 
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