While I was preparing some chicken the other day, my cockatoo came into the kitchen and seemed very interested in what I was doing.
Of course, I didn’t let him get near any raw meat, but I had noticed him eat the occasional bug in the past, so it got me thinking.
I’d always thought of cockatoos as being herbivores, like most parrots, but I wondered if he actually would like to eat some meat from time to time.
So, I decided to look into it.
So, do cockatoos eat meat?
In the wild, cockatoos may eat insects from time to time. They don’t really eat anything that we would consider ‘meat’, though. They are omnivores, though most of what they eat tends to be seeds and fruit. From time to time, they can certainly have a few small pieces of meat.
So, the answer is that cockatoos don’t really eat meat, but they can.
You shouldn’t give your cockatoo a lot of meat.
Moderation is really important, and you should only see meat as an occasional treat.
Let’s look further into this.
Table of Contents
Can cockatoos eat meat?
In small amounts, yes.
However, there is no need to feed them meat.
It’s not a necessary part of their diet.
As I said, in the wild, they will often eat bugs occasionally.
This is, however, very different from eating meat.
They don’t really possess the means to bite or chew meat, since their beaks are mainly for eating seeds.
If you do want to get that extra bit of protein into their diet, you’re probably better off feeding them bugs, rather than meat.
You can buy all sorts of live insects as pet feed in most pet shops, so they won’t be difficult to find.
If you are going to give them actual meat, you need to chop it up small enough that your cockatoo can just swallow it.
If it’s too big, it won’t be able to get it down properly.
In any case, meat should only ever be a very small part of their diet and shouldn’t replace any of their regular food.
Can cockatoos eat chicken?
Chicken is probably best avoided.
Eating cooked meat isn’t going to be very good for a cockatoo, but eating raw chicken is obviously very dangerous for a lot of reasons.
There are all sorts of potential illnesses that your cockatoo could catch from raw chicken, so it’s best avoided.
If you do want to feed your cockatoo meat, don’t feed it chicken.
Can cockatoos eat pork?
While pork is probably better than chicken, it’s still not really the best choice.
It’s very fatty, for one thing.
Your cockatoo most likely won’t enjoy the taste of pork, anyway.
The truth is there isn’t really a “good” meat to feed to a cockatoo.
Any meat that you do give them should be strictly moderated anyway, but something like fish is probably your best option.
Can cockatoos eat steak?
Steak is almost certainly going to be too tough and will be very hard on your cockatoo’s digestive system.
If you were to cut off a tiny strip before cooking, this would probably be fine, but my advice would be to avoid it entirely.
Can cockatoos eat raw meat?
It will depend on the kind of meat, but if you are going to give them meat, small amounts of raw meat is probably the best option.
They will have the easiest time digesting this, compared with cooked meat.
Depending on what the meat was cooked in, like certain oils and spices, it always stands a chance of being problematic in one way or another.
Are cockatoos carnivores?
No, cockatoos are not carnivores, at least in the sense of obligate carnivores.
They do not have to eat meat.
In the wild, as I said, they will quite commonly eat bugs.
But that is about as far as their carnivorous nature will take them.
Cockatoos are omnivores, then, with a mostly herbivorous diet.
But, again, this doesn’t mean they eat meat.
They wouldn’t be able to
Cockatoos’ diets should be made up almost entirely of seeds, fruits, and vegetables.
You don’t need to worry about providing any meat for them, except as a treat.
So, the safest answer is that there is no necessity to have meat in your cockatoo’s diet.
It will do perfectly fine without it, and even slightly too much is likely to be problematic.
That said, if your cockatoo does seem to particularly enjoy eating meat, then you can give it some meat from time to time.
Moderation is really important, though, otherwise you could harm your cockatoo.
There is no need to feed your cockatoo meat otherwise.
It’s impossible to overstate just how much harm you could potentially be doing by feeding your cockatoo a lot of meat.