10 Foods You Should Never Feed Birds

1. Avocado

Every part of the avocado contains persin, which is bad news for birdie. This fruit contains unhealthy fats and can cause series cardiac toxicity in birds, especially smaller species. Better option: a carrot stick! 🥕

2. Coffee

Caffeine-jitters are the worst—just imagine how terrible it must be for a bird with a tiny heart! Caffeine in any form is unhealthy for birds, especially that found in coffee, tea, and soft drinks. Better option: a refreshing beakful of water! 🚰

3. Chocolate

Okay, almost everyone knows this one: don’t give your pets chocolate! Theobromine and caffeine are toxic to birds and are especially harmful when ingested via chocolate. A better option: a banana slice! 🍌

4. Onions

Green, red, white…if it’s an onion, it’s a no from us. Onions, both raw and in powder concentrates, has been found to cause serious toxicity in birds that can be fatal. No thanks! Better option: A cube of mango! 🥭

5. Apple seeds

While some birds love apples as a treat, it is essential to remove the seeds from the apple prior to feeding. Apple seeds contain cyanide, which is not what we’d like to see in any bird’s diet. A better option: a well-washed sprout! 🌱

6. Salty snacks

There are no barbecue chips in the wild, and there certainly shouldn’t be any in your bird’s digestive system. While salt isn’t inherently toxic to birds, it should never be ingested in high doses like humans can with their salty snacks. Better choice: an unseasoned cooked pasta noodle! 🍜

7. High-fat foods

Just like salt, excessive amounts of foods high in fat — such as eggs, sunflower seeds, and fatty nuts like cashews — may not be good choices for a bird. This can cause lethargy, unhealthy weigh gain, and heart problems in birds. A better choice: some cooked beans! 🍠

8. Fruit pits

Birds love fruits, but the pits found in fruits such as plums, cherries, apricots, and peaches all contain cyanide—hard pass! Always be sure to remove fruit pits and throw them away so your bird doesn’t have a chance to find a new toy to chew on. Better choice: a bit of cantaloupe! 🍈

9. Garlic

Toxicity found in garlic is well studied in dogs and cats, and birds are no different. Just like onions, garlic can cause serious health problems in birds almost immediately. Better choice: some unsalted nuts! 🌰

10. What you had for dinner

Unless you ate a hearty helping of nutritious seeds and vegetables or fruit, what you just ate probably isn’t a good treat for your bird. It’s important to never get into the habit of letting your bird try foods that can compromise their health. Better choice: a diet prescribed by your trusted avian veterinarian. 💙