Are you searching for great supplements for birds to avoid diseases and improve their health?
80 to 90% of bird diseases are caused by inadequate diet.
And if your bird is lethargic, has poor feather color, and has crusty nostrils, these are signs that he’s deficient in vitamins and minerals that support his body and feather growth.
Neglecting these signs can take a toll on your bird’s health, and, in worse cases, it can lead to death.
While some fruits, vegetables, and commercial foods contain vitamins and minerals for birds, they may not be enough to meet their nutritional requirements.
So, in this article, we put together a guide on choosing the right supplements for birds to make the most value out of our money.
In particular, you’ll discover:
- a complete and nutritionally-balanced supplement that contains all 13 essential vitamins and minerals
- a calcium supplement that prevents egg binding and feather plucking
- and a digestion aid that helps balance your bird’s gut health and provides relief for diarrhea
No matter how tiny our feathery companion is, we, as loving bird owners, want to ensure they live the best and healthiest life possible to prolong their lifespan.
So, join us as we uncover the best vitamins for birds according to their needs.
To help you get an overview of the holy grails for a healthy bird, here’s a summary of the list.
Best Supplements for Birds Reviewed In This Guide
- Multi-vitamin supplement enriched with amino acids, for all caged birds
- The #1 everyday bird supplement in the world
- Well-balanced composition of 13 vitamins, 18 free amino acids, and minerals
- Contains all 13 essential vitamins, vitamin C, and iodine
- Includes the vitamins that are often missing in seed diets such as vitamins A and D
- Easily mixes with water or food
- Formulated by top avian veterinarians and nutritionists
- No artificial colors or flavors
- Wild Harvest, 1 oz., Multi-Drops, for Birds
- Multi-drops are a high potency vitamin supplement
- Premium quality for all birds
- Easy to distribute, just simply add to water
- Supplies important vitamins to help support proper growth
- 🦜 BOOST YOUR BIRD’S HEALTH: This complete bird calcium formula promotes strong bones, muscles, and a healthy nervous system
- 🦜 COMPLETELY BIOAVAILABLE: Ready to use right out of the bottle. We've incorporated Magnesium and Vitamin D-3 to ensure optimal absorption and utilization of these essential minerals.
- 🦜USE UP TO 3 TIMES PER WEEK: Administer our supplement up to three times per week to prevent common health issues such as egg binding, feather plucking, splay legs, nervousness, and poor muscle control
- 🦜MIXES CLEAR IN WATER: Our tasteless supplement dissolves completely in water, ensuring easy administration without altering the taste. Your bird won’t even know that you’re providing it with essential nutrients to keep it healthy.
- 🦜A BIRD SUPPLEMENT YOU CAN TRUST: You love your feathered friend. So why would you give it boring supplements? Our line of products helps your bird look its best. Made in the USA, our natural ingredients and non-GMO options are the perfect choice for your bird.
- Flora Bird probiotic powder contains 10 billion cultures and 7 unique strains made specifically for birds. This is a high potency probiotic for all birds for avian digestive health and immune support.
- Diverse Strains - A healthy avian gut contains a highly diverse balance of good flora. Flora Bird probiotic contains multiple strains of Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and Pediococcus probiotics to more closely mirror the natural diversity of the avian gut. Supports against the effects of stress and helps maintain proper crop pH.
- Prebiotics boost natural gut flora and support healthy probiotic growth in the digestive tract. Formulated to support the intestinal environment, and helps to maintain good gut health.
- Probiotic Cultures (CFU) include: Lactobacillis acidophilus, Lactobacillis plantarum, Lactobacillis casei, Pediococcus acidilacti, Pediococcus pentosaceus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium animalis. One tub of Flora Bird contains 80 servings for large birds, 160 servings for medium sized birds, and 640 servings for small birds. Whether your feathered friend is a finch or a Macaw Flora Bird Probiotic is the right choice for your bird’s digestive health.
- This formula contains no GMOs, gluten free, and is vegan. Flora Bird probiotic contains no artificial ingredients, no artificial colors, no artificial preservatives, and contains no fillers.
- HEALTHY INDOOR BIRDS: Fresh-ground flaxseed base to deliver a healthy balance of Omega fatty acids, fiber & antioxidants, plus superfood ingredients like yucca, dried kelp & proteins (soy & whey). All to provide your captive bird support for thick plumage, energy & digestion.
- POWER: Powders are the most potent way to deliver efficacious & fresh ingredients
- PURITY: We use patented cold process manufacturing technology for maximum nutritional value
- PERFORMANCE: Proprietary blends of non-GMO superfoods to add key nutrients into your bird's diet
- VETERINARIAN FORMULATED: Made in the USA with high-quality ingredients to help pets live their best lives ever when fed daily
- SPECIALLY DESIGNED BLEND OF INGREDIENTS: Includes millet, oat groats and canary grass seed.
- FOR ALL BIRDS: Ideal for all birds.
- VITAMIN AND MINERAL ENRICHED: Formulated to provide added vitamins and minerals to your pet’s diet.
- DIETARY SUPPLEMENT: Wild Harvest Healthy Benefits Molting Supplement is intended for intermittent or supplemental feeding, not to be the sole source of nutrition.
- WILD HARVEST BRAND: Offers a full range of nutrition and interactive products that promote a healthy, happy life for your pet.
Why Are Supplements for Birds Important?
One of the main problems in birdkeeping is malnutrition.
Since many owners feed their birds mostly with seeds, their avian pets may lack essential vitamins and minerals needed to keep their bodies and feathers healthy.
According to MSD Vet Manual, even mixed diets consisting of ½ seeds and ½ pellets lack vitamin A if not proportionally controlled.
On top of that, birds tend to be picky eaters.
Combine that with a poor diet, and you’ll likely have a malnourished bird.
That’s why you need to provide supplements for your avian companions.
There’s a scarcity of studies about parrot nutrition, but we know simply giving your birds a pelleted diet is not enough.
Because essential nutrients like vitamins A, E, B vitamins and beta carotene can be easily lost during the processing of pellets.
But what will happen if your bird is deficient in vitamins and minerals?
Here are some of the complications that might occur if your avian companion is vitamin and mineral-deficient.
Complications from Vitamin and Mineral Deficiency in Pet Birds
1. Respiratory Infections
Malnourished parrots are likelier to fall victim to upper respiratory and secondary infections.
That’s why it’s best to provide a complete and balanced diet to strengthen your bird’s immune system to help them to fight off diseases and infections.
It can also help in speeding up your bird’s recovery.
Birds with a pure seed diet can become obese.
On top of that, seeds don’t supply the range of vitamins and minerals avian needs and can actually lead to fatty liver disease.
3. Weaker Bones and Body
Our avian pets have a special hollow structure that makes their bones light enough to allow flying but strong enough to support their body.
Therefore, their bones need calcium to keep themselves healthy and strong while maintaining their body lightweight.
4. Poor Reproduction
Poor diet doesn’t just affect their health but also their ability to reproduce.
It can lead to depression or aggression, as observed in lethargic and screaming parrots.
5. Loss of Flying Ability
What makes a bird a bird is its feathers, wings, and ability to fly.
But calcium and other mineral deficiency can weaken birds’ bones and muscles and cause them to lose their flying ability.
6. Ugly Feathers
Birds need lots of nutrients such as calories, amino acids, vitamins, and minerals to keep their feather healthy and growing.
So if your bird’s feathers look dull and ugly, this could indicate that your feathery companion has a poor diet.
But what type of supplements can you give your birds?
Types of Supplements for Birds
There are different types of supplements in the market, which include vitamins, mineral supplements, amino acids, and digestion aids.
You may find multivitamins that contain all essential nutrients, while others are specially formulated to target a specific mineral or vitamin deficiency and address a bird’s needs.
So before purchasing any vitamin for birds, let’s first dig deeper into the different types of supplements to get more insights into their nutritional needs.
Many vitamin supplements for birds offer combinations of the following essential vitamins and minerals.
Birds fed with mostly nuts and seeds are at a higher risk of developing vitamin A deficiency.
But what is vitamin A?
It’s a fat-soluble that plays a huge part in your bird’s growth and development, hormonal production, and immune system.
Vitamin A is also responsible for the following:
- formation of epithelial, vascular, and mucous membranes
- good vision
- yellow and red pigmentation
What Vitamin A Deficiency Looks Like
How will you know if your feathery companion lacks Vitamin A in the body?
Look out for the following signs because these are symptoms your bird is vitamin A deficient:
- Presence of white spots around their beak and nasal cavity
- slimy mouths
- wheezing breathing
- crusty nostrils
- lethargy and restlessness
- appetite loss
- dull feathers
- and gagging sounds
Now let’s talk about the solutions.
Feeding your avian pet with raw vegetables, fruits, grains, and greens rich in Vitamin A can help.
It includes but is not limited to the following:
- Bok Choy
- Bell Peppers
- Green Beans
- Pumpkin Seeds
If you can’t feed your birds with raw vegetables or you simply don’t have the luxury of time to do so, it’s best to provide supplements that contain high amounts of vitamin A.
This water-soluble vitamin is responsible for the metabolism of energy from bird feed.
Most commercial bird foods contain small amounts of vitamin B, but they aren’t enough to meet their needs.
Since many fruits and vegetables don’t offer this vitamin, you must supplement birds with vitamin B complex.
It must include the following:
This aids in converting carbohydrates into glucose for energy and prevents lethargy or weight loss caused by too much protein intake.
It also helps in digesting fats.
Lack of Thiamin may lead to restlessness, shrieking, feather picking, and seizures.
This vitamin is responsible for the growth and development of your avian companion.
It also helps support your bird’s immune system in both young and adults.
Riboflavin deficiency can cause poor and stagnant growth and rough and dry skin.
Birds, especially the young ones, need niacin to kickstart their growth and development.
It also helps promote healthy skin and gorgeous feathers.
Lack of this nutrient can lead to neurological problems and poor growth.
This nutrient is essential for protein, carbohydrates, nucleic acid, and fat formation.
Without it, your pet may experience metabolic disruption and death.
Pantothenic Acid(B5) and Biotin(B7)
These water-soluble nutrients regulate carbon dioxide metabolism, metabolic reactions, and enzyme formation.
This antioxidant helps strengthen your bird’s immune system and fight free radicals in its body.
Similar to vitamin B, this is water-soluble.
So it can be easily excreted from the bird’s body if unnecessary, and there’s no need to worry about overdosing.
Another reason why vitamin C is important is that it helps metabolize iron and other minerals like copper into usable forms.
It also helps the body to respond more quickly and fight against foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses.
Vitamin C also plays a critical role in wound healing.
Since it can help boost the immune system, the cells can regenerate more quickly, and wounds heal faster.
That’s why birds deficient in vitamin C heal slower than those with sufficient levels of this nutrient in their diet.
Unlike the previous nutrients, vitamin D is fat-soluble.
This vitamin is important in the absorption of calcium which is essential in egg production, bone development, and neurological activity regulation.
What will happen if your bird lacks this nutrient?
Your avian pet may suffer from muscle weakness, scaly skin, and seizures.
Furthermore, Vitamin D deficiency plays a huge part in mood disorders like depression and anxiety in birds.
If your bird’s bones easily get fractured and experience physical abnormalities like overgrown or soft beaks, splayed legs, and bent keels, your pet may be vitamin D deficient.
They can get this vitamin from sunlight.
On top of that, you can give supplements for birds that contain vitamin D and D3, which are crucial for bird feathers’ health.
Pyridoxine: This is necessary for amino acid utilization and the formation of antibodies. A lack of pyridoxine can lead to immune dysfunction.
Folic Acid: This is essential for amino acid production, and lacking folic acid can cause immune disorders.
Ascorbic Acid: Birds need ascorbic acid to maintain collagen and elastin in the bird’s blood vessel walls.
Vitamins go hand in hand with minerals to support your bird’s growth and development in different aspects.
But what kind of minerals are essential for your avian companions?
Let’s dig deeper into that in this section.
Vitamin D and Calcium are closely related because if a bird is vitamin D deficient, there’s a high chance he lacks calcium too.
Some bird species, like African Greys, are more prone to calcium deficiency than others, so they need supplementation.
But why do birds need calcium?
As we’ve mentioned earlier, calcium is essential for blood clotting, muscle function, eggshell and bone formation, and feather attachment.
This mineral also affects mood because neurotransmitters in the brain utilize it.
Birds can get calcium from kale or spinach, but they must eat in high quantities to gain enough of this nutrient.
But avians in captivity can’t have enough calcium from diet alone.
That’s why you need to supplement your birds with calcium blocks or boulders.
If your bird is experiencing blood loss or anemia, you must provide an iron sulfate supplement.
It’s necessary for hemoglobin production, the oxygen-carrying protein in a bird’s red blood cells.
Magnesium is vital in bone formation and hematopoiesis or blood cell formation.
Without this mineral, your bird may have poor bone development.
Breeding birds extremely need iodine because it’s essential for the production of thyroid-producing hormones.
And a deficiency in iodine can cause hypothyroidism and goiter, which can affect the health and reproductive abilities and the health of the offspring of your avian pets.
Birds can get iodine from seafood and seaweed.
But if these are unavailable, you must ensure their feed and supplement contains iodine.
3. Amino Acids
Another essential part of your bird’s diet is the amino acids, the building block of proteins that are necessary for bone, muscle, enzyme, and feather formation.
Without amino acids, your bird’s growth will get affected, and it can eventually lead to death.
Since protein is important in muscles and all stages of muscle formation, deficiency in it can weaken parts of the body, like wings.
And it can result in loss of flight abilities and, worse, death.
4. Fatty Acids
Birds also benefit from balanced fatty acids, including Omega-3 and Omega-6, when given in the right proportion and amount.
These fatty acids support your bird’s immune system and aid in fighting against diseases and ensure your bird will have good growth.
How to Choose Supplements for Birds
Before purchasing supplemental vitamins for pet birds, you need to consider your bird’s needs first and assist with their diet.
Consult with your avian vet about this since they can conduct physical examinations and tests before giving a diagnosis.
If your bird lacks some nutrients, you may need to get a supplement that targets those deficiencies.
You should also consider your bird’s type, age, and current health condition to get the right bird supplements.
It can be costly to supplement your birds on top of their hefty feed, but it can benefit your avian pet in the long run.
Supplements for Birds: Reviews and Buying Guide
In this section, we’ll discuss the right supplements according to every bird’s needs.
This will help you make the right purchasing decisions and make the most out of every buck you spend.
So, what is the best multivitamin for birds? Without further ado, let’s get right into it!
Best Supplements for Birds’ List
1. Best Multivitamin Supplement for Birds: Nekton-S Multi-Vitamin
This vitamin offers a complete and balanced composition of:
- 13 essential vitamins
- 18 amino acids
- and minerals such as calcium and manganese, and other trace elements
Your bird can get everything he needs, from vitamins A, B complex, C, D, to pyridoxine and folic acid in just one bottle!
Plus, this brand is avian vet-recommended!
In fact, it is the go-to multivitamin of many breeders, bird enthusiasts, animal parks, and zoos worldwide.
If your bird has been on a seed-only diet for a long time and is very picky and won’t try pellets, fruits, or vegetables, it’s very important to provide him with a multivitamin supplement like Nekton-S.
This is proven effective and guaranteed safe for birds.
Furthermore, it has saved many avian lives, including those with feather plucking problems and liver problems.
Rich in Vitamin A
This targets and provides relief to birds with vitamin A deficiency issues.
If your bird shows signs of this, including sneezing, crusty nostrils, and loss of appetite, your avian companion definitely needs this multivitamin.
High Amounts of Vitamin D3
This contains high amounts of vitamin D3, which helps strengthen their bones, assimilate calcium, and avoid neural problems.
But it must only be fed up to 5% of the avian’s daily ration to avoid adverse health effects.
Complete and Balanced
Your avian pet can highly benefit from this because it’s nutritionally balanced.
And despite having high vitamin D3 content, it’s guaranteed safe because it has an equal and proper ratio of your bird’s calcium and its other vitamin requirements.
Ease of Application
You just need to dissolve this in their drinking water, and it’s ready to serve to your birds.
Just make sure to change the solution daily, and you won’t have any problem with it.
The only downside of this supplement is the lack of magnesium.
But we find the calcium, manganese, and vitamin D contents enough to make up for it.
After all, no other supplement below can provide all the nutrients Nekton-S can offer.
Three Months Lifespan
This multivitamin must be consumed three months after opening.
So to avoid wasting money, you should purchase smaller bottles that your bird can fully consume in a short lifespan.
2. Best Vitamin Supplement for Birds: Lafeber’s Avi-Era
This vitamin formula is specially formulated by best-in-class veterinarians and nutritionists, so you can rely on the quality and nutritional benefits it offers.
Just like the previous multivitamins, this is highly concentrated.
But what makes it at a disadvantage when pitted with Nekton-S is it lacks calcium, manganese, iodine, and other minerals that are essential for bone and feather development.
Improves Feather Health
If your bird’s feathers appear dull or unusually black, this supplement may be the one he needs because it’s complete with vitamins that can make avian feathers more vibrant and healthier.
No Artificial Colors or Flavors
It does not change the taste of your bird’s food.
So they won’t notice anything strange, and they’ll enjoy their feed just as they used to.
No Minerals and Amino Acids
Since it does not contain calcium and other minerals, you may need to add another supplement that can fulfill their dietary needs.
Turns the Water Yellow
The formula can make the water turn yellow, but most birds don’t mind the color and drink the water the same way.
3. Best Multi-Drop Supplement for Birds: Wild Harvest Multi-Drops
It comes in a handy drop design that allows you to add it to your bird’s water or food directly.
This vitamin supplement is high in vitamins A and D3 and also contains thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, niacin, Pantothenic acid, and choline.
Since you don’t need to mix and dissolve it into the water anymore, it’s easier and more time-saving than the previous supplements.
Support Bird’s Growth
This contains vitamin A and B complex, supporting your bird’s health and growth.
Lacks Other Vitamins and Minerals
If your bird is vitamin C or calcium-deficient, this is not the right supplement for him because it doesn’t provide ascorbic acid, minerals, or amino acids.
This is generally cheaper than the previous vitamin supplement for birds which is only fair because it has lesser content than others.
4. Best Calcium Supplement for Bird: UnRuffledRx Nutritional Calcium
Now if your bird’s issue is egg binding, feather plucking, poor muscle control, and splay legs, he needs a supplement high in calcium and magnesium like the UnRuffledRx Calcium, magnesium, and vitamin D formula.
As you probably noticed, these two minerals are paired with vitamin D3 because it aids in calcium absorption.
It also helps your bird’s eggs to have thicker shells and prevent undesirable bird behaviors caused by poor health.
Promotes Stronger Bones and Muscles
This supplement is specially formulated to strengthen your avian pet’s bones and muscles and maintain normal nerve and muscle function, thanks to its calcium and magnesium content.
Helps in Mood Management
If your bird has been moody and becomes persistent in picking its feathers, this is the vitamin you’re looking for.
All Natural Ingredients
This is GMO-free, all-natural, so you can trust that it only provides the best for your pet and nothing else.
The most common complaint about this supplement is its price.
But a little of this goes a long way, so it’s definitely worth trying.
5. Best Probiotic Supplement for Birds: Vital Planet Flora Bird
This is a pure and high-potency probiotic supplement for birds that contain 10 billion live cultures and multiple strains of Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Pediococcus probiotics.
It helps balance your avian’s gut and boost its flora to keep its digestive tract healthy and your bird happy.
No GMOs, Gluten-free
What we like the most about this probiotic supplement for birds is it has no artificial ingredients, colors, preservatives, or fillers.
Good for Those Taking Antibiotics
If your avian companion has been sick and taking antibiotics and his gut is out of balance, it’s a great supplement to promote recovery and improve flora health.
It’s a little bit hefty, but every scoop is worth the cost because it can save your bird’s life when diarrhea strikes.
6. Best Superfood Supplement for Bird’s Feathers: The Missing Link
It’s made of flaxseed, yucca, and dried kelp and also contains protein and fatty acids like Omega-3 and 6.
Furthermore, it’s also enriched with niacin, pyridoxine, riboflavin, thiamin, folic acid, and vitamin B12 to kickstart their growth and promote amino acid production.
Since birds love to see themselves in the mirror just like us, seeing their feathers look healthy can make them happy too.
Supports Feather Growth
If your bird’s feathers look dull and unappealing, this can help you gradually bring back the vibrance and sheen in them.
Strengthen Bird’s Immune System
It doesn’t just support your feathery companion’s digestive system and backs up your bird’s immune system in fighting against diseases.
Everything in this bird supplement, from the omega fatty acids down to the dietary fibers and phytonutrients, is all-natural, so it’s guaranteed safe for your pet!
Not for Picky Eaters
Some picky eaters don’t approve of its taste.
So if your pet is one of them, this may not work for him, but as the old saying goes, you need to try it to believe it.
If your bird’s taste buds approve of this, he can highly benefit from this supplement.
7. Best Molting Supplements for Molting Birds: Wild Harvest
We’re wrapping up this list with the best supplement for birds going through the inevitable and painful molting phase.
Molting birds have higher dietary needs to support their feather’s growth.
So, if your pet is going through molting, this is the perfect supplement for him.
It offers millet, oat groats, and seeds that provide calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, D3, and E.
Unlike the previous supplements for birds which come in a powder form, this is made and offers true, vitamin-enriched seeds.
So your birds can enjoy munching on this while benefiting from the health benefits it offers.
Keeps Molting in Control
True to its name, this helps control molting and brings your bird back to its former glory faster than without a supplement.
This bird supplement smells great, and it’s easy to digest.
Even if your bird is over the molting stage and has fully recovered, you can still utilize it to keep its feathers as vibrant and gorgeous as ever.
Not all birds may like the taste of Wild Harvest Molting supplement since each avian has its own preferences.
So we suggest choosing the smaller bags at first to have a taste test and see whether your avian companion enjoys it or not.
FAQs About Supplements for Birds
What is the best supplement for birds?
Birds need vitamin supplements that contain vitamins A, C, D3, and B complex to fight diseases and have healthier skin, feathers, and bodies.
As for minerals, the most important is calcium, especially for breeding and laying birds because it helps strengthen bones, eggshells and promote healthy feathers.
Do birds need supplements?
Yes, all birds need supplements, but most especially those who are on a seed diet.
They need vitamins like D3, minerals, and amino acids to stay healthy and thrive.
What vitamins do birds need for feathers?
Birds need vitamin A for normal skin coloring and feathers, vitamin D for maintaining their bright feathers, and C to prevent feather plucking and self-mutilation.
What is the most important nutrient for birds?
Water is the most important nutrient in a bird’s body because it can survive even if it has lost almost all of its body fat and half of its protein.
But it can suffer from various illnesses if it loses 10% of its body water.
However, that doesn’t mean water is enough because your bird still needs a wide range of vitamins and minerals to support their growth and development.
Is multivitamins good for birds?
Birds need multivitamins that contain vitamins A, E, D3, and B-complex to fight diseases and infections and stay healthy.
How do you give birds vitamins?
Some supplements for birds need to be dissolved in water and mixed with foods such as finely chopped fruits, egg food, or soaked seed, while others can be mixed into their water.
How can I improve my bird feather quality?
You can improve your bird’s feather quality by giving them a balanced diet and supplements that contain vitamins A, D, and C, Calcium, and Magnesium.
Final Thoughts About Supplements for Birds
Birds have long life spans. Some species can even reach 60 years old and outlive their owners like Macaws.
However, it will only be possible if you’d give them proper nutrition and choose the best supplements for birds that meet their needs.
If you want your bird to have the best of both vitamins and mineral world, we highly recommend Nekton-S since it’s by far the most complete and nutritionally balanced supplement.
But if, after your consultation with your vet, you discover your bird is calcium deficient, the UnRuffledRx supplement is more appropriate for his condition.
However, if it’s diarrhea, Vital Planet flora bird supplement is the way to go!