- Aug 19, 2023
- Meyers, Rock Pebbler, Bourkes, African Grey, Barraband
I'm currently having a really hard time with bird pellets. One of my birds has developed either a corn or soy allergy which makes his skin very itchy & he started picking. I don't know if it's the corn or the soy, but I suspect corn as it's known to be allergic. The problem is that cornmeal & soymeal are usually the first 2 ingredients of most pellets like Harrison's, Roudybush, Mazuri, etc. I switched him to Tops, which has neither, but he crushes it to dust & then eats the dust & goes to the water dish every bite & developed polyuria as a result. His picking lessoned like 80% though on the Tops & my avian vet said to keep using it. Then I had a horrible emergency w/my African Grey yesterday & she passed away over night (ingested some thread or fabric from her cage cover which impacted her intestines-I'm DEVASTATED beyond words, she was my everything, my baby for 21 yrs since she was 4mo. old). I had to take her to a different avian vet because my usual wasn't available on the dire emergency. It was a well known avian vet with positive reviews-so not someone inexperienced at all. I happened to mention the Tops pellets to her (as my Grey was also on them in a 50/50 mix w/Roudybush) & she was vehemently opposed to Tops, saying that they are notorious for all kind of health problems in parrots, such as kidney disease & said they are way too high in phosphorous for them. She said to stay away from alfalfa pellets & thought my Grey's kidney imbalance could have been a result of Tops. My usual vet didn't have any problems with Tops though, so now I'm confused & concerned because #1.) my grey passed away & did have some kidney issues according to her blood tests (though she died of the intestinal blockage) & #2.)my other parrot with skin issues is now exclusively on Tops because of his corn allergy (he also gets veggies & greens daily). I have emailed my regular avian vet to ask his opinion, but haven't heard back because he's out of town right now. Has anyone on here heard that the alfalfa pellets are bad from their vets? She was REALLY against them & said Harrison's was the best. She also said Roudybush isn't good because something about them using fermented corn or soy (or non fermented?), & claimed that birds cannot digest it properly. I can't use Harrison's because of the corn & soy though. I feel at a loss. I did see that there are 2 other pellet brands which have no soy or corn (Caitec Oven Fresh Bites & Hagen Tropical Alternative Formula). The problem w/both of those is that they are higher in fat & have peanuts & sunflower in them, which isn't great because my parrot with the skin issues also has high cholesterol & needs to have a low fat/low carb diet. I'm at a loss & just don't know what to do. You get a different answer depending on the vet. It's so frustrating!