Pumpkin seeds are a favorite snack among humans, and many people wonder if it’s safe to give them to their pet Cockatiel as well. The short answer is yes. Your Cockatiel can eat pumpkin seeds, and they can be quite healthy. However, there are several things to consider before making them a permanent part of your pet’s diet, so keep reading while we look at nutritional value, the difference between cooked and uncooked seeds, and how many are safe to eat so you can make an informed decision.
Are Pumpkin Seeds Bad for My Cockatiel?
Pumpkin seeds are not harmful to your Cockatiel, and you do not need to worry about feeding them. The only downside is that they are slightly high in fat, but it is unlikely that they will eat enough for it to become a problem and there is not as much as other popular seeds like sunflower seeds. However, many experts point out that while these seeds are nutritious and good for your bird, they don’t provide a complete meal, and it’s better to use them as a healthy and tasty treat. Treats are usually limited to no more than ten percent of your pet’s diet to ensure there is plenty of room for more nutritious foods.
Are Pumpkin Seeds Good for My Cockatiel?
Yes. Your Cockatiel will enjoy eating the tasty seeds, and they will provide your pet with plenty of nutrition. Pumpkin seeds are high in protein, fat, and fiber, which will help provide energy and the building blocks of strong muscle. The fiber will help balance the digestive system, and your pet will also receive several minerals like iron, phosphorus, magnesium, and manganese, which can help with the bone health of your pet.
Feeding your cockatiels the wrong mixture of seeds can be dangerous to their health, so we recommend checking with an expert resource like The Ultimate Guide to Cockatiels, available on Amazon.
This excellent book will help you balance your cockatiels’ food sources by understanding the value of different seed types, dietary supplements, fruits and vegetables, and cuttlebone. You’ll also find tips on everything from housing to health care!
How Should I Feed Pumpkin Seeds to My Cockatiel?
Most experts recommend providing pumpkin seeds to your Cockatiel as a treat, which means no more than 10% of your pet’s diet. For most owners, that’s about 3 – 4 grams per day. However, feeding this much won’t leave room for other treats, so most owners give their bird a few ounces once or twice per week. We recommend serving raw seeds instead of roasted or boiled seeds because heating and boiling the seeds will reduce the nutrients and kill the important enzymes it contains. Rae seeds not only retain the nutrients and enzymes, it provides your pet with a natural texture. Many commercial brands can contain salt and other preservatives that might be harmful to your pet, so always try to use fresh organic seeds when possible.
What Else Should I Feed My Cockatiel?
Your Cockatiel should eat a diet of about 60% commercial pellets, and 30% should be fresh vegetables. The remaining 10% should be fruits and seeds like the pumpkin seed. You can also feed your pet several other seeds, including millet, hemp, sesame seeds, flax seeds, canary grass, and more. Chia seeds, corn, and pine tree seeds are larger, so you should grind them up before feeding them to your pet and only provide sunflower and safflower seeds occasionally because they are high in fat and could contribute to weight gain.
Several nuts like almonds, pecans, and cashews can also make a great treat, but you should avoid peanuts because they can grow mold in the shell that might kill your bird. Suitable fruits include apples, bananas, grapes, strawberries, pears, peaches, melons, and more. The problem with fruits is that they are high in sugar which can lead to weight gain and a hyperactive bird.
- Related Read: What Food Can Cockatiels Eat?
Pumpkin seeds are a perfectly healthy treat to give to your Cockatiels, and they will provide them with plenty of nutrients, including protein fiber, iron, and magnesium. Unfortunately, like most seeds, you can only provide them in small amounts to provide variety and excitement for your pet because their nutritional isn’t complex enough to provide a balanced diet, and they are high in fat. Three or four ounces once or twice per week should be ideal.
We hope you have enjoyed reading over this short guide, and it has helped answer your questions. If we have convinced you to add this tasty treat to your bird’s diet, please share our look into if Cockatiels can eat pumpkin seeds on Facebook and Twitter.
Featured Image Credit: Susana Martins, Pixabay