You might see them as a nuisance, but magpies are actually pretty smart birds. If you have a dog and you’ve started to notice magpies regularly coming to your property, it can be an indication that they’re looking for food. This is because they are usually wary of humans and won’t come near them unless they know that there’s something in it for them. Given that wild dogs will hunt the same prey as their smaller cousins, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if you see magpies and dogs hanging out together from time to time. The question is: Can you feed magpies dog food? There are some pros and cons to this – let’s take a look at the details!
How to identify a magpie
First, let’s identify the bird that you’re potentially about to make a friend with. Magpies are a medium-sized black and white bird that are often confused with crows. However, the two species have entirely different habitats, so you’re more likely to see magpies near woodland areas such as parks and gardens. They also have a smaller beak than crows, reminiscent of a parrot’s beak. Magpies are named after the spotted feathers on their back, which can range from black and white to blue and white. They’re social creatures, so you may find that they travel in pairs or even in larger groups. Their nests can be found in trees or on building ledges.
Why do magpies eat dog food?
As mentioned, it is likely that the birds were previously feeding off crumbs from your dog’s food. But now that your pup has found an entire bowl of food, there’s no shortage of food for the magpies to gorge themselves on. What’s more, they’re likely to be familiar with dog food because they’ve likely stolen it from a pet owner’s dog bowl before! There are plenty of reasons why feeding magpies dog food is a bad idea. For one thing, you’re taking away the challenge of foraging for their own food. This can cause issues for the birds in the long run, since they won’t be prepared to survive in the wild if they don’t learn to forage.
Can you feed magpies dog food?
There are a few reasons why you shouldn’t feed magpies dog food. As we’ve discussed, it’s not beneficial for the birds – but it also isn’t beneficial for your dog. Feeding your dog high-protein dog food can lead to issues like weight gain and hair loss. Most importantly, dog food isn’t designed for magpies. When feeding wild birds, it’s important to make sure that the food is rich in the vitamins and minerals that are essential for their development. Dog food doesn’t contain these things! There is a chance that you will attract more birds than you bargained for: it’s possible that other birds will come to your property because they know that there’s a free meal to be had.
Pros of feeding Magpies dog food
There are some advantages to feeding magpies dog food. For one thing, it’s a good way to get rid of some of the dog food that you have sitting in your home. Plus, you’ll be helping the birds out in the process! You may also notice that your own dog is less likely to chase the birds away if they’re getting a free meal. Plus, it’s a great way to get your dog used to living near magpies. There’s no guarantee that your dog will show signs of aggression towards the birds, but feeding them together can help your pup learn to ignore them.
Cons of feeding Magpies dog food
For one thing, it’s not a healthy diet for the birds. Sure, it gets rid of some of the dog food you have lying around the house, but you could also be giving the birds food poisoning from the grain that is present in most dog foods. If you have a dog that is aggressive towards the birds, you run the risk of that aggression intensifying if you feed them dog food. It’s also important to make sure that your dog’s bowl is sealed, so that other birds don’t get a free meal as well.
3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Feed Magpies Dog Food
For one thing, it’s important to make sure that the birds are capable of hunting for themselves. It can be easier to feed them when you’re first trying to get them used to the neighbourhood, but you should transition them to a healthy diet as soon as possible. For another thing, you run the risk of attracting more birds than you bargained for. It’s common for birds to migrate, so there’s a chance that the birds will move along once they’ve had their fill. However, you also run the risk of attracting permanent birds, which may bring pests with them.
2 Reasons You Should Feed Magpies Dog Food
For one thing, it’s a great way to get your dog used to living near magpies. It’s important to note that you should use caution when feeding the birds. Avoid feeding them dog food directly from the bowl, and make sure that you clean the bowl thoroughly to prevent bacteria build-up. It can also be a good way to get some of the dog food out of your house while providing helpful nutrients to the birds.
Magpies are intelligent birds that are easy to misjudge. They’re a lot more friendly than they seem, and are actually quite helpful around your home. As pests go, they’re relatively harmless, and can actually be good for your garden! If you notice that the birds are frequenting your property, there are a few things you can do to dissuade them. You can reduce the amount of dog food that you’re feeding your dog, as well as seal off your dog bowl so that the birds can’t get at the food. If you want to welcome the birds to your home, there are a few things you can do. You can leave out seed feeders, which will make it much easier for the birds to survive the winter.