How Long Can Cockatiels Go Without Food?

Food is an essential requirements for all living beings and cockatiels are no exception. You need to ensure your birds eats a well-balanced diet. Sometimes, your cockatiel might refuse to eat. Other times they might just run out of food when you are away. So, it is crucial to know how long cockatiels can go without food?

So, I decided to go ahead and do some research, and here is what I have learned.

Cockatiels can survive for about 48 hours without eating. The longer your cockatiel goes without proper nutrition, however, the weaker they become, so it’s important to contact your vet if you suspect that your bird hasn’t eaten in 48 hours or more.

As an owner, it is essential that we keep our cockatielss safe, and meet all of their food requirements.

Let us now take a closer look at the important questions related to the topic. We will be taking a look at how often cockatiels need to eat, overfeeding a cockatiel, and more.

How Often Do Cockatiels Need To Eat?

It is crucial to feed our cockatiels appropriately. Most owners serve their cockatiel one-two tablespoon of seeds or pellets every 24 hours.

However, I prefer to serve my cockatiels one tablespoon of food every 12 hours.

Although it might seem the same to you, serving two small meals instead of one large meal makes a difference.

Serving our little ones two small meals daily will mirror how cockatiels would eat in the wild.

Also, most birds hoard their food, so multiple meals will make sure that they at least eat some of their food.

Also, remove all the uneaten food every 24-48 hours. This will ensure that our birds do not eat rotten food over fresh ones.

Rotten food has a foul smell which can easily lead to stress in our birds.

Should Cockatiels Have Food All The Time?

You need not keep food in your cockatiel’s cage for 24 hours.

The best idea is to have is removing all food, even seed and pellets, at your cockatiels’s bedtime. Leaving food in the cage overnight can attract rodents keen on pilfering bits of your bird’s food.

A good habit to get into is to offer cooked foods in the morning, and then remove the uneaten portion before you leave home for the day.

How Many Days Can A Cockatiel Live Without Food?

Although a cockatiel live for about 48 hours without food before dying, they might develop severe health complications within 24 hours of not eating and can die.

If you find that your cockatiel has not been eating for a while, I would advise you to contact a vet as soon as possible.

Of course, your cockatiel’s age, size, and health could also be a determining factor in how long they can go without food before dying.

A healthy adult cockatiel may make it to day 3 or 4. In contrast, a senior underweight bird may only make it shortly past the 12-hour mark.

To be on the safe side, always assume that your cockatiel can’t go past 12 hours without eating.

If you are going away for the weekend, or longer, make sure that you have someone who can feed your cockatiel and give them fresh water.

How Do I Know If My Cockatiel Is Hungry?

Cockatiels are always hungry. Your birds will always crave more food. Especially when it comes to tasty fruits and vegetables, they can’t stop chirping.

You may think that your cockatiels are greedy, and in a way, they are. So the question you need to ask yourself is, do your birds need more food?

Unfortunately, there is no appropriate way to determine their hunger.

You can take your cockatiel to the veterinary surgeon for an examination, but this can be unnecessary unless your bird shows any malnourishment.

There is no favorable evidence of a cockatiel who is underfed.

Instead, you need to feed your cockatiel a balanced diet in the right quantities, which is a great approach.

Besides, keep an eye on your cockatiel’s food bowl. It will help you determine if your bird is eating or not.

Can You Over Feed A Cockatiel?

We must never overfeed our cockatiels. Overconsumption of food by our pet birds might lead to serious health complications.

There might be times when you would be tempted to feed your birds excessively. However, doing so will only harm your cockatiel.

Although cockatiels do not tend to overeat, it is essential to control the amount of food you feed your birds.

Besides this, taking care of the amount of kibble you feed your cockatiels is essential. In the wild, cockatiels do not get any kibble and do very well without it.

Therefore, you must serve your cockatiel with the correct amount of kibble to your birds to get the maximum benefit.

Overeating will make your cockatiel obese. Besides, it will also lead to health problems such as digestive complications, infections, etc. Therefore, never feed your birds more than the suggested quantities.

How Long Can A Baby Cockatiel Go Without Food?

Baby cockatiels can survive alone for some time, if not longer. Nonetheless, they can only survive for a limited amount of time without food.

If your baby cockatiel is not eating enough, do not force feed it; consult a veterinarian in such cases.

Cockatiel Not Eating On The First Day

If you got your cockatiel from a breeder or shelter, do enquire and learn about their dietary history.

Cockatiels have a sensitive digestive system and a sudden change in eating habits can disrupt the balance.

Feeding the same mixture of dry pellets, fruits, vegetables, and treats that were previously fed to them, will help them settle down quickly.

If you have no idea about their diet history, then try offering them some vegetables such as carrots and bell pepper. It is best to avoid watery vegetables in the beginning.

Do not give them varieties of food, in the beginning, it is best to introduce one at a time.

Old Cockatiel Not Eating

Old cockatiels often tend to lose interest in food. It is important to observe the eating habits of your old cockatiels.

With the change in their weight, the owner must change the diet of their little ones.

However, if you feel that your cockatiel is suffering from a health complication, then you must take your bird to a vet as soon as possible.

How Long Can Cockatiels Go Without Water?

Cockatiels need water in their diet to help them digest their food. Therefore, they should never be without water for more than 20 to 24 hours.

If domesticated cockatiels do not have access to clean water for an extended period, their health can deteriorate quickly.

Lack of water can even result in dehydration in cockatiels. In some cases, it might even lead to organ failures.

It would be best to take care of your cockatiel’s water intake, especially in summer.

If your cockatiels have not consumed water in an extended period, you must find the reason and try to resolve it.


Hello, I am Mohini, the founder of this blog. I am a qualified Animal Nutrition. I am here to help everyone understand their pets better.

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