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Weight Gain

Weight gain in parrots might be a sign of an unhealthy diet or disease.

Margaret A. Wissman, DVM
Posted: August 22, 2013, 10:45 a.m. PDT


If you weigh your bird on a regular basis and notice acute or chronic weight gain, the causes could vary from an unhealthy diet to disease.


Acute weight gain could indicate a hen that is carrying and about to lay an egg. Weight gain could also be the result of an improper diet or overeating that has lead to obesity. A metabolic disease, such as hypothyroidism, tumors or oviductal disease could also be the cause of an overweight bird.


A vet check called for if your bird’s weight fluctuates more than 10 percent of its body weight. In the case of a food allergy, you may want to switch to a pellet diet that is hypoallergenic. (Work with your avian vet to determine a special diet for your bird.) Also, you can eliminate item after item from the diet to see if the symptoms stop.


Provide your bird with a healthy, nutritious diet that does not encourage overeating or fatty foods that lead to obesity. Always monitor your bird by weighing it on a regular basis so you are. Secondary problems can arise due to a weight problem and any other infections, diseases or conditions should be treated while treating the weight problem.

Disclaimer:’s Bird Health section is intended for educational purposes only. It is not meant to replace the expertise and experience of a professional veterinarian. Do not use the information presented here to make decisions about your bird’s health if you suspect your pet is sick. If your pet is showing signs of illness or you notice changes in your bird’s behavior, take your pet to the nearest veterinarian or an emergency pet clinic as soon as possible.

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