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Cockatiel Pellets: The Best Food for Your Pet Cockatiel

cockatiel pellets

Cockatiels are among the most popular pet birds, known for their friendly and playful nature. Many cockatiel owners want to provide the best care for their feathered companions, and a crucial aspect of that care is providing a healthy diet. In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of feeding Lafeber foods, specifically cockatiel pellets, as the top food for cockatiels to ensure they live a healthy life.

What are Cockatiel Pellets?

cockatiel pellet, yellow bird in yellow plastic container

Cockatiel pellets are a type of bird food specifically formulated to meet the nutritional needs of your pet cockatiel. Unlike seed mixes, which many cockatiel owners mistakenly believe provide all the nutrients their bird needs, pellets offer complete nutrition in a compact and easy-to-eat form. In fact, a seed-only diet can lead to malnutrition and health problems, as essential vitamins and minerals fall short in such a diet.

There are several brands of cockatiel pellets on the market, but one of the best pellet food for cockatiels is Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets. Lafeber’s Premium Daily is a scientifically tested and high-quality blend of natural ingredients that provides a full meal for your pet bird. The Lafeber Company’s front door is literally grown with mixed grains and real fruit, ensuring that the bird food you’re feeding is fresh and of the highest quality.


LAFEBERS Premium Daily Diet Pellets for Cockatiels, 5 lb
  • NUTRITIONALLY COMPLETE COCKATIEL FOOD: formulated by top avian veterinarians and avian nutritionists
  • NON-GMO AND HUMAN-GRADE INGREDIENTS: no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives
  • RICH IN ANTIOXIDANTS & OMEGA 3&6 BALANCED: help support healthy skin, feathers, and immune system
  • MADE IN THE USA: our food is mixed, formed, and packaged in small batches and under one roof on the Lafeber family farm in Cornell, IL
  • 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: we are a small family company that works hard to produce gourmet pet bird food, which is why we're confident in offering a 100% satisfaction guarantee
Dr Cockatiel is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.


Benefits of Feeding Cockatiel Pellets

1. Complete and balanced nutrition: Cockatiel pellets contain all the nutrients needed for your bird’s diet, including essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. This ensures your bird receives the nutrition they need for a healthier life considerably better than a seed-only diet.

2. Improved feather health and appearance: A healthy diet rich in vitamins and minerals promotes healthier feathers, a stronger immune system, and a more vibrant appearance. Pellets are also less likely to cause obesity in your bird, which can lead to a variety of health issues.

3. Better digestion and reduced waste: Cockatiel pellets are made from ground non-GMO corn, soybean meal, and other ingredients that are easy for your bird to digest. This means less mess and easier cleanup for you, as well as a more comfortable and healthy life for your pet.

4. Less mess and easier cleanup: Unlike seed mixes, where your bird cracks open the seeds and leaves the hulls behind, pellets produce less waste and are easier to clean up.

5. Can help prevent selective eating and obesity: Seed junkies, or birds that only pick out their favorite seeds from a mix, are at risk of developing nutritional deficiencies and obesity. Pellets eliminate the risk of selective eating, ensuring your bird receives a balanced and healthy diet.

Best pellet food for cockatiels

When selecting the best cockatiel food, it’s essential to look for pellets made with high-quality ingredients, such as Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets. The brand’s commitment to natural ingredients and strict quality control ensures that your bird receives the best possible nutrition.


ZuPreem Natural Pellets Bird Food for Medium Birds, 2.5 lb (Pack of 2)
  • Made in the USA specifically for Lovebirds, Quakers, Small Conures and Cockatiels.
  • HEALTHY and DELICIOUS. Fresh, wholesome, natural bird food made with vegetables. Precisely formulated with the essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids your bird needs every day for a balanced diet.
  • ESSENTIAL NUTRITION. Fortified with essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Feed daily to provide the foundation of your birds diet.
  • FEED DAILY to provide your bird essential nutrition for a healthy and balanced diet.
  • CONVERT YOUR BIRD TO A HEALTHIER DIET. Converting your bird to a food that includes pellets is worth the effort for his/her health and wellbeing. ZuPreem has been dedicated to producing innovative, high-quality products since 1967.
Dr Cockatiel is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.


Ingredients to look for in high-quality cockatiel pellets include:

cockatiel pellets

– High-quality protein sources: Look for pellets that contain soybean meal, which is an excellent source of essential amino acids and protein for your bird.

– Essential vitamins and minerals: A well-rounded bird food should contain all the necessary vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that your cockatiel needs to thrive. Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets contain ground limestone for stronger bones and essential nutrients like vitamin E supplement, folic acid, and ascorbic acid (vitamin C).

– Natural ingredients: Avoid pellets that contain artificial food colors or preservatives. Instead, look for those made with natural ingredients like ground corn, whole egg, oat groats, wheat flour, and real fruit. These ingredients not only provide essential nutrients but also enhance the taste naturally, ensuring that your bird enjoys their food.

Popular and reputable pellet brands for cockatiels include Lafeber foods, which are known for their high-quality ingredients and commitment to bird health. Their pellets are naturally preserved with citric acid and mixed tocopherols (a form of vitamin E) to maintain freshness without the need for artificial preservatives. Independent laboratory tests confirm the quality and safety of their products.

Deciding on the right pellet size for your cockatiel is also essential. Small birds like cockatiels require smaller pellets that are easy for them to eat and digest. Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets are available in a size suitable for small birds, ensuring that your feathered friend receives the nutrition they need without struggling to consume their food.

Transitioning Your Cockatiel to Pellets

Switching your bird from a seed-only diet to a pellet-based diet may take some time and patience. Here are some tips for encouraging your cockatiel to eat pellets:

1. Gradually introduce pellets into their diet by mixing them with their regular seed mix. Over time, slowly increase the proportion of pellets while decreasing the amount of seed until your bird is eating mostly pellets.

2. Offer pellets in a separate dish alongside their regular food. This allows your bird to explore the new food at their own pace.

3. Use positive reinforcement and treats to encourage your bird to try the pellets. If your bird likes fresh fruit or vegetables, you can mix small pieces into the pellets as an incentive.


Nemeth Farms Worlds Freshest Sun-Dried Spray 1lb
  • Perfect Treat: Millet is a popular and nutritious seed that is suitable for a variety of bird species, including Canaries, Budgies, Lovebirds, Cockatiels, and Conures. These small seeds are rich in carbohydrates, protein, and essential nutrients, making them a healthy addition to the diet of many pet birds. Millet can be offered as a treat or as part of their regular diet. It provides energy and can also serve as a source of mental stimulation for these intelligent birds
  • Building Blocks of Health: All Natural, no pesticides or chemicals and Non-GMO, our millet is high on Amino Acids, a crucial element for overall health - supporting functions such as muscle development, immune system strength, and feather quality in birds
  • Value: Pristine all-natural millet, free from stems, ensures you pay solely for the premium millet, maximizing value and quality in every purchase
  • Proudly Grown and Sun Dried in the USA: Prioritizing and supporting domestic agriculture, our millet is farmed and packaged in the Midwest which provides a lower carbon footprint. Sun Drying enhances the flavor and nutritional content of the millet while avoiding the use of artificial drying methods
  • Convenient storage and Bug-resistant: Easily store our bird millet spray in a cool environment without concerns or complications. Our millet spray won't attract unwanted bugs, ensuring a clean and hassle-free storage experience
Dr Cockatiel is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.


Supplementing Your Cockatiel’s Pellet Diet

While cockatiel pellets provide complete nutrition, it’s also essential to offer your bird a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables as part of a healthy cockatiel diet. These foods not only provide additional vitamins and minerals but also help to keep your bird’s diet interesting and engaging.

Be sure to offer a range of fruits and vegetables in moderation, as too much of one type of food can lead to an unbalanced diet. Some foods to avoid or limit in a cockatiel’s diet include avocado, chocolate, caffeine, and high-fat or high-sugar treats.

Top Food for Cockatiels: Ensuring a Balanced and Nutritious Diet

Providing the best cockatiel food is essential for the overall health and well-being of your pet bird. A balanced and nutritious diet not only keeps your cockatiel healthy but also contributes to their lifespan, feather quality, and happiness. To ensure your cockatiel thrives, it’s crucial to offer them a variety of top-quality foods that cater to their specific dietary needs. Here is an overview of the top food for cockatiels:

Cockatiel Pellets

As discussed earlier in this article, cockatiel pellets are the best food for cockatiels, providing complete and balanced nutrition. Pellets should form the foundation of your bird’s diet, as they are specifically formulated to meet the nutritional needs of cockatiels. High-quality pellet brands, such as Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets, are made with natural ingredients and provide essential vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to support your bird’s overall health.

Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

green leaves on brown wooden table, spinach

In addition to pellets, supplementing your cockatiel’s diet with fresh fruits and vegetables is essential for providing additional nutrients and variety. Some top choices for cockatiels include leafy greens (such as kale, spinach, and Swiss chard), carrots, sweet potatoes, apples, and berries. Be sure to wash all fruits and vegetables thoroughly and remove any seeds or pits before feeding them to your bird.

Remember that moderation is key when feeding fresh produce to your cockatiel, and it should not replace the pellets as the main food source. Overfeeding fruits and vegetables can lead to an unbalanced diet and potential health issues.

Sprouted Seeds and Mixed Grains

Sprouted seeds and mixed grains can be a nutritious addition to your cockatiel’s diet, providing essential fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals. Sprouting seeds increases their nutritional value and makes them more digestible for your bird. You can sprout seeds at home or purchase ready-made sprouted seed mixes specifically formulated for birds.

Mixed grains, such as oat groats, barley, and millet, can also be offered in moderation as part of your cockatiel’s diet. However, be cautious not to overfeed these foods, as they can lead to obesity and other health issues if consumed in excess.

Occasional Treats

While the majority of your cockatiel’s diet should consist of pellets, fruits, vegetables, and some sprouted seeds or mixed grains, it’s also essential to provide occasional treats to keep your bird engaged and happy. Healthy treat options include small pieces of nuts (such as almonds, walnuts, or pecans), cooked pasta, and whole-grain bread or crackers.

Be cautious with the number of treats you offer, as too many can lead to an unbalanced diet and potential health issues.

Final Thoughts

Cockatiel pellets, such as Lafeber’s Premium Daily Pellets, are the best food for cockatiels, providing complete nutrition, improved feather health, and better digestion. By making the switch to a pellet-based diet and supplementing with fresh fruits and vegetables, you can ensure that your feathered companion enjoys a long, healthy, and vibrant life.


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