Fact: your bird could be overweight, and you might not even know it. Yes, it’s true that your feathered friend is at risk for some health-related issues because they’re a tad heavier than they should be. Not to worry, though — because we’re here to tell you what signs to look for and how to help your bird shed a few pounds!
Unlike human beings, a bird can’t try on clothing and realize that it has outgrown its favorite pair of jeans. Additionally, your feathered friend might not show a protruding waistline, either. If that’s the case, then how can you tell that your little buddy is overweight? Well, it’s quite simple. To start, look at how far apart your bird’s feet are.
Feet Spread Apart
Of course, your bird might be stretching out their “stems” but it all depends on how far apart their feet are. Sometimes the easiest way to see if your feathered friend needs to shed a few pounds is when their feet are always too far apart at all times. Typically, when a bird is at a healthy weight, they will keep their feet together at a comfortable distance — but when they’re overweight, it will be quite difficult for them to keep them together.
Loss of Breath
Another sign to look for is if your bird has shortness of breath at all times. Granted, your little buddy could get winded now and then — but if it’s a constant occurrence, then you’ll know that it’s time to cut back on their portion sizes. Yes, it may seem like a problematic detail to observe — but it will be straightforward to notice. Additionally, your bird may seem more tired than usual, due to the shortness of breath.
Finally, in addition to their feet being spread apart and shortness of breath, your bird’s breastplate area will be a tad larger than usual. Typically, a bird owner will be able to feel the keel bone (located in the center of the breast) with ease — but if your bird is overweight, then that essential bone will be covered by some excess “plump.”
How to Lose Weight
If you notice that your feathered friend has gained a significant amount of weight, then it’s time to take action. First and foremost, it’s essential to cut back on their portion sizes initially. If you have a habit of overfeeding your little buddy, then you might want to start measuring their meals. Additionally, you’ll also want to cut back on the amount of sunflower and safflower seeds you feed them — since these are packed with calories!
Another way to help your bird shed some pounds is to let them exercise outside of their case — with supervision, of course. Since many birds are in their cages for a vast majority of the day, it constricts their range of motion — which ultimately makes it a tad difficult for them to stretch and exercise. Letting your bird roam freely, in a room, with your supervision for at least 30 minutes will help them get the exercise that they need. Once you start taking action with these tips, you’ll see a difference in your bird — and they’ll thank you in the process!
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