Switching a bird's diet to Harrison's is typically relatively simple. Just offer the food and the bird eats. Some birds can be very picky about any new item. Birds specifically that are addicted to seeds or table foods may more difficult to switch. The most important detail is to ascertain with certainty that the bird is
Quick Tips for Conversion to Harrison’s Bird Foods
If your bird exhibits resistance to conversion try the following tips:
1. Harrison’s Bird Bread Mix
can be used as an extremely effective conversion tool. Food that the
bird currently eats can be added to the mix and baked in the bread.
Gradually reduce the amount of that food and replace with the
appropriate Harrison’s formula (as shown here).
2. Change the bird’s
environment. Try moving your bird to a new enclosure, such as a box,
aquarium or even a new cage. Remove all the toys, perches and bowls and
offer High Potency™ on a solid surface of the floor.
Use a mirror or white paper. Sprinkling food over a mirror or sheet of
white paper placed on the bottom of the enclosure works especially well
for budgies. A bird old enough to be socialized may eat to compete with
the “rival” bird in the mirror. A white paper background may draw
attention to the food particles.
4. Slowly “wean” your
bird from seeds. In the evening, offer seeds from the food bowl for only
1 hour. Then, remove the seeds and replace with High Potency (High Potency Coarse - High Potency Fine - High Potency Super Fine)The next
day, give your bird seeds for only 30 minutes in the morning and
evening. The third day, reduce the time to only 15 minutes twice a day.
And finally, offer only High Potency on the fourth day. Observe the
bird’s droppings for normal frequency.
5. Feed your bird at mealtime. Place
the food on a plate, move it around with your finger or a spoon and
pretend to eat it in front of your bird.
6. Offer Power Treats, Pepper Lifetime Coarse or Adult Lifetime Mash . Birds love the
taste of Power Treats and Pepper Lifetime Coarse. These foods can be
crushed for smaller birds. Adult Lifetime Mash also has an appealing
taste to help your bird try new food.
7. Use a
converted bird as a role model. House your bird near another that’s
already eating Harrison’s Bird Foods, or use a “trainer bird” in the
same cage as a role model for eating.
8 Heat (warm) or
moisten the food. Heat the High Potency™ slightly or moisten it with a
small amount of fruit juice or certified organic red palm fruit oil.
Schedule a supervised diet change with your veterinarian. Some birds do
not recognize new items as food, and placing the bird in a clinic where
monitoring can be done will help keep your bird healthy through the
When it comes to improving the diet, the
biggest disservice you can do to your bird is to just give up after the
bird shows resistance to conversion."
If the conversion
steps don’t work the first time, you can feed the familiar food for a
short time and then try again. The effort is worthwhile for the long
term health of your bird.
The bird’s weight (in grams),
body condition, attitude and droppings should be monitored carefully on
a daily basis in small and medium birds and at least twice a week in
Watch Your Bird Closely
because food has been ground to a powder, thrown around, or he's in the
feeding cup all the time, is not a sign that your bird is eating or
If any of the following should occur *(change in
behavior, droppings or weight), or you are unsure about your bird’s
health call your avian veterinarian and reschedule the diet conversion:
BEHAVIOR: appears cold, listless, fluffed-up or reluctant to play or talk.
very loose or significantly reduced feces, while the amount of
urine/urates has increased, or the feces changes color to yellow or dark
green (a color change to brown or light green is normal due to the
formulation of the diet).
monitor progress by weighing your bird daily with a gram scale. If he
loses more than 10% (3g = budgie or 10g = cockatiel), resume feeding the
previous diet and call your veterinarian.