Parrots are becoming increasing in popularity as pets within the USA and various other parts of the world and although they are still a niche pet, we do expect their popularity to just continue to grow at a rapid pace.
Due to many types of parrot seeing a recent surge in their popularity resulting in many first time, beginner parrot owners out there, we have noticed a spike in the number of people reaching out to ask questions about caring for their pet parrots.
We constantly see questions about what you can and can’t feed your pet parrot and this is great to see as so many people make easy to avoid mistakes with foods that parrots really shouldn’t be eating.
One thing that many people have been asking recently is if parrots can eat yogurt or not so we have decided to make this the topic of today’s article.
Can Parrots Eat Yogurt?
The short answer to this question is no, parrots should not eat yogurt.
Yogurt is a dairy product which contains lactose and parrots are unable to digest lactose properly.
Lactose intolerance is actually quite common in birds and can cause them to experience digestive issues such as diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.
In addition to the lactose, the macronutrient ratios in yogurt really are not ideal for your pet parrot either.
Over time, this can result in additional problems with your pet parrot too causing it to potentially end up getting some serious health issues if it has been consistently fed yogurt over an extended period of time.
So, if you’re looking for a healthy treat to give your parrot, yogurt is not the way to go.
There are plenty of other snacks that are safe for them to eat and won’t cause any digestive problems.
Can Parrots Eat Greek Yogurt?
The same goes for Greek yogurt, unfortunately.
Even though Greek yogurt has a much lower lactose content than regular yogurt, it still contains some lactose which can cause digestive issues in your parrot if consumed on a regular basis.
What about Frozen Yogurt?
You might be thinking that since frozen yogurt is lower in lactose content, it might be safe for your parrot to eat but this is actually not the case.
Frozen yogurt still contains lactose and the same macronutrient ratios that are not ideal for your pet parrot so it should be avoided as well.
Signs Of Lactose Intolerance In Your Pet Parrot!
Here are some of the more common signs of lactose intolerance that parrots can sometimes display after eating yogurt:-
- Digestive issues such as diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.
- Weight loss.
- Feather plucking or baldness.
- Wheezing and other respiratory problems.
- Lack of energy or enthusiasm.
What Should I Do If I Already Gave My Parrot Yogurt?
If you have already given your pet parrot yogurt and are now reading this article, don’t worry!
In most cases, giving your parrot a small amount of yogurt is not going to cause any serious health problems but it may have diarrhea and vomiting for a short while.
However, we would recommend that you stop giving them yogurt immediately and find some other healthy snacks that they can have instead.
If you do notice your parrot acting strange after eating yogurt then you can book a video call with a veterinarian to have them assess your parrot via your cameras smartphone to offer their professional advice.
What Are Some Safe, Healthy Alternatives To Yogurt For Parrots?
There are actually quite a few safe, healthy alternatives to yogurt that you can give your parrot as a treat.
Sugar And Dye Free Pellets!
50-70% of a domesticated parrots diet should usually be made up of sugar and dye free pellets.
The great thing about these pellets is that they are specifically designed to meet a parrots nutritional needs and can be a great source of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that your parrot needs to stay healthy.
Although some people do use these pellets for 100% of their pet parrots diet, we do usually recommend that you try to mix it up a little with various treat options from below.
When used in different ratios to add veriety to your parrots diet, the various options below can be used to make up the remaining 30-50% of your parrots diet.
Raw Or Steamed Vegetables!
One of the best things that you can give your parrot as a treat is some raw or steamed vegetables.
Vegetables are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are essential for a parrots health and they usually absolutely love them!
Cooked Whole Grains!
Another great treat option for your parrot is cooked whole grains.
Whole grains are a great source of fiber which can help with digestion, and they also contain some vitamins and minerals that are essential for your parrots health.
Quinoa is the most popular whole grain for parrots even though technically, it is a seed, not a whole grain but parrots tend to love it!
Sprouted legumes are another great treat option for your parrot as they are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are essential for a parrots health.
Not to mention, they usually love the taste!
Some of the most popular sprouted legumes that you can give your parrot include lentils, mung beans, and chickpeas.
Nuts And Seeds!
Nuts and seeds are another great treat option for your parrot as they are packed full of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are essential for a parrots health.
Just make sure that you only give them unsalted, unroasted nuts and seeds as the salt and roasting process can be harmful to their health.
Some types of nuts have various herbs and spices on them too so we would recommend you avoid these too if possible.
Limited Amounts Of Raw Fruit!
Raw fruit is another great treat option for your parrot but you should only give them limited amounts as too much sugar can be harmful to their health.
The best fruits to give your parrot are usually berries as they contain very little sugar.
If you do decide to give your parrot other types of fruit then we would recommend that you remove the seeds first as they can be harmful to their health.
You should also avoid giving your parrot any fruits that have been treated with pesticides or other chemicals as these can also be harmful to their health.
Summary Of Alternative Foods To Yogurt For Parrots!
- Sugar And Dye Free Pellets!
- Raw Or Steamed Vegetables!
- Cooked Whole Grains!
- Sprouted Legumes!
- Nuts And Seeds!
- Limited Amounts Of Raw Fruit!
There are many safe, healthy alternatives to yogurt that you can give your parrot as a treat. These include sugar and dye free pellets, raw or steamed vegetables, cooked whole grains, sprouted legumes, nuts and seeds, and limited amounts of raw fruit. Just be sure to avoid giving your parrot any fruits that have been treated with pesticides or other chemicals as these can be harmful to their health.