Gerbil Care For Smart Owners

Welcome to Online Gerbil Care. This is a resource for Gerbil owners to give you what you need to  know about owning  a Gerbil.

Basic Gerbil care is essential in order to ensure that your Gerbil is well looked after and that they live to a good age and are vibrant and healthy.

At Online Gerbil Care dot com there are a numerous resources of articles and information about how to look after a Gerbil.

Take a look at the menu to your left and above to navigate yourself around the site.

Check out our pages on;

A Beginners Guide to Gerbil Care

Gerbil Foods

Gerbil Pet Care: Frequently Asked Questions

Gerbil Facts for Kids

 

Is a Gerbil the right pet for you?

Are you thinking about buying a gerbil?

Here are some useful facts to know about them to help you make an informed decision.

1.Gerbils are very social animals that have an affectionate and gentle character.

2. They don’t need a lot of space and only require a minimal amount of time to feed and clean them.

3. The Latin name for gerbil is ‘meriones unguiculatus‘. This means ‘clawed warrior.

4. The gerbil is a prey animal which means it is always on the look out for predators.

5. They have been shaped by their natural desert environment and can survive for long periods without water or food.

6. They have the ability to re-absorb foods which means they don’t lose water through sweat. They also don’t urinate a lot as the retain as much water as they can.

7. They are very good burrowers and can dig complex systems of tunnels where they live in the wild and where they keep away from dangerous predators such as birds.

8. Gerbils come from Mongolia and North Eastern China.

9. The domestic gerbil that we know is a descendant of the Mongolian gerbil.

10. It became a popular pet from the 1960s across the United States and Europe.

11. An adult gerbil will grown between 6 – 10 inches or 15 – 25 cm in length. This includes their tail. Their tail will measure half the overall body length.

12. An adult gerbil will tend to weigh around 70g.

The benefits of owing a gerbil

13. They are very inquisitive and cute pets.

14. They can be tamed easily and can be taught to climb up on your shoulder or to sit in your lap.

15. Gerbils are very energetic creatures.

16. They don’t smell like other rodents tend to do and are odorless.

17. They can learn who you are by smelling and climbing into your hand.

18. They are very light to pick up and are small in stature.

19. Gerbils very much enjoy digging tunnels and are very interesting to watch if you keep them in an aquarium digging their underground networks.

20. They don’t bite or nibble you as much as other rodents tend to do.

21. Once they get used to you and your scent, they are quite easy to hold.

22. Gerbils are intelligent creatures.

23. They can be taught to take food from your hand.

24. They are self cleaning animals and clean themselves with their paws.

25. Gerbils also feed themselves with their front paws.

26. They have very powerful back legs which they use to power them when running or jumping.

27. Gerbils can jump extremely high and can escape a cage if the cage lid is left open.

28. They live between 3 to 5 years if they are properly cared for.

29. Gerbils tend to sleep in cycles so are awake during large parts of the day and the night.

30. They are not easily scared and so do not mind you getting close to them to watch them as they play and creating tunnels and hide outs.

31. Gerbils are cheap to look after; a good gerbil aquarium starts from about $100. A gerbil itself will cost around $12. Expect to spend around $5 a week on food for them.

32. Supplies they also need; wood shavings, bedding, an exercise wheel, a nest box, a water bottle, and food bowls.

The downside of owning a gerbil

33. Gerbils need lots of material to chew on as their teeth are constantly growing. If they do not have anything to chew on for a sustained period of time, it will become very painful them as their teeth will continue to grow through their jaw.

34. They will bite you if they get aggravated.

35. Gerbils can’t chew plastic, rubber, or cotton.

36. When you first get a gerbil they need a few days alone to become accustomed to their new home.

37. They are very social animals and so should be kept in pairs or in threes of the same gender. They love to be with other gerbils

38. Female gerbils should only be kept in pairs.

39. Metal and plastic cages are not ideal as gerbils will try and chew metal or plastic. Their teeth are sharp enough to completely gnaw through metal or plastic over time.

40. They become quite depressed and lonely if they left on their own.

41. Gerbils should not be kept with other rodent species such as mice, rats, guinea pigs and hamsters.

42. Gerbils should only live with other gerbils of the same family as they have the same scent. If you are putting two gerbils together that belong to different families they need to be put together with a method such as ‘the split cage method’.

43. Males are generally more calmer than females and are more likely to sit in your hand for long periods of time. They are not as likely to be as energetic in the cage though

44. Female gerbils are generally much more curious than male gerbils and much more energetic. They are much more difficult to hold though.

45. They can sometimes be heard at night running on their exercise wheels and so it isn’t a good idea to have them in the same room where you are sleeping.

46. They are not cuddly creatures like rodents such as guinea pigs and would prefer not to be held for long periods of time and would prefer to run around.

47. Children need to be supervised when picking them up as gerbils do not react well to being squeezed or handled roughly.

48. Female gerbils tend to be more quarrelsome than males.

49. Male Gerbils are more vicious when them fight

50. Contrary to the opinion of some pet stores, they need big aquariums to run around them. Cramped conditions can frustrate them and can lead to them to become more aggressive towards you.

 

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