By Dr. Laurie Hess, DVM, Diplomate ABVP (Avian Practice)
Wild birds forage all day long. They forage for food, nest sites, and mates. They have jobs. They keep busy. Pet birds don’t have these opportunities. Bird owners offer food to their pets in a cup, provide safe housing with cages, and often become their birds’ “mates” even though they aren’t truly mating with their birds. So, pet birds don’t have the same opportunity for foraging, entertainment, and psychological stimulation that their wild counterparts do. They spend a great deal of time alone, in cages, with minimal mental stimulation and few chances for physical activity. This often leads to their developing negative behaviors, including feather picking, screaming, and environmentally destructive actions (such as chewing up furniture or walls).
ZuPreem’s blended diets provide pet owners with a great way to decrease these negative behaviors, provide psychological stimulation, and increase foraging opportunities for their birds by allowing birds to seek for their favorite foods in their food cups while keeping nutrition, in the form of “smart” pellets with added vitamins and minerals, in those cups. ZuPreem’s blends also can be offered to pet birds outside their cages, spread out in different locations in a bird-safe room, to encourage birds to engage in physical activity by walking or flying over to eat their favorite foods. In addition, blended diets can be used to reward birds for learning a new behavior or trick or simply as a means of encouraging bonding with owners.