Yes. A gerbil needs elements to entertain. They have less tendency to use the wheel than hamsters, but they can also benefit from it. We will also put wood to gnaw and a little house to hide. Be careful with plastic accessories, as they can be harmful if they are gnawed and swallowed. We will avoid buying accessories in the Chinese bazaars, since they may not be safe because of the materials or paintings.
JERBO or HAMSTER?
Well here we list some features that may help you decide but first of all a small introduction:
A gerbil is a medium-sized rodent, slightly larger than a mouse and
Smaller than a rat. Their long tails are covered with hair and end in a brush-shaped tuft. His eyes are jet black or ruby red, and they come in a wide range of colors.
Gerbils are funny and constitute incredibly sociable pets and rarely bite. They are very funny. Their morisquetas and family interactions can entertain you for hours. You can train them so they feel on your shoulder, or on your head!
Gerbils require a minimum of care. Their houses take up very little space, their maintenance is economical, they hardly generate odors, and they do not need frequent visits to the Veterinarian.
* Gerbils are extremely social and they don't like them at all
alone, unlike the lonely Syrian Hamster. If you already decided on
the gerbils, you must buy at least two. It is proven that gerbils
who are alone live less time, are less healthy, are more
unhappy, and usually gain weight. They are also more difficult to
tame, and are less friendly in general. Even if you are at home everything
the day, dedicating time and playing constantly, this does not compensate for
fact that he won't have anyone to sleep with, who to eat with, who to groom
and who groom it. Therefore, a partner is essential .. Both males
as females they will get along very well with a partner of the same sex,
especially if they were born in the same litter, or if they have been together since
early age (6 to 8 weeks old) .. Never mix gerbils of
two different clans or groups! since they are territorial and there may be fights.
* When you decide to buy a gerbil, try to contact a breeder, to meet your parents and even your grandparents. If you buy it in a pet shop, verify that it is well maintained and healthy, their eyes should be bright, that their tail is completely covered with hair (without bare parts), that their fur is soft and not bristled or caked, and that no animals in the same cage look sick. (This is valid for those who adopt a gerbil from a breeder as well) Gerbils They should not appear fearful of human contact or resist manipulation. Under no circumstances should they bite you! At most, a puppy may use its mouth to explore you (but this tickles, it doesn't hurt).
* Choose two young gerbils of the same sex that are around six to eight weeks old. This will help ensure that the two get along. If, for any reason, you could not buy them together, as long as the puppies are less than eight weeks old they should get along without problems. Remember that they are territorial and if you choose adults from different litters, you should take other protocols, as they can be aggressive with each other.
If your gerbil comes from a good breeder, the training should already be complete, or at least directed. Remember to wait until the gerbil has about 6 weeks to take it to
home. This will give you time to learn from your parents and siblings to be sociable, and not fear humans. First, give them a couple of hours to get used to their new home. Just then, put your hand in the tank and let them smell you. Maybe it happens to you that a very young gerbil wants to "prove you" with little bites. (This shouldn't hurt.) Make gentle movements so they don't panic. This is a stage that happens when the gerbils grow, and is part of their stage of "putting everything in the mouth." Repeat this procedure a few minutes every day. Remove the sunflower seeds from the gerbil food, and use them as a “prize.” They will know that the treats come from your hands. Put some seeds in the palm of your hand and they will soon associate the tasty things with your hands.
*Never take it from the tail, even at the base, as it could break. Don't "chase" them around
of cage, and do not grab them by throwing your hands from above put them on your arm or shoulder very carefully, so that they feel or you
explore. Gerbils love to sit on their shoulders. Usually,
they will run from shoulder to other, and by your arms, or they will stay on your elbow
To snoop around the outside world. Be very careful, if they seem the type
jumping, do this in a quiet place, sitting on the bed or in a
chair, to prevent bumps in case they fall.
After a week or two doing this, your gerbils will be glad that
You want to lift them. You can teach them how they feel on your shoulder or
Elbow while you walk. Very soon, they will give you “signals” every time they want to leave.
Generally, they will stand on their hind legs and leave their front legs on the glass of the tank, and at the same time they will make small leaps. Some even learn to jump in the air when they see you. If they do this,
It's because they want to be out of the tank for a while! .
Gerbils love to dig and rearrange their house constantly, moving
the fodder or "bed" from one side to the other. This will entail that, with so much movement of the forage and others, if you use a cage, it is most likely that half or more will end up in the
ground. To solve this, an alternative is to place the cage inside
a low height box, so all the waste is inside the box.
However, multi-level cages with stairs represent a
Potential danger for puppies. There have been cases of gerbils that
They have broken a leg because of the wires. Therefore, I don't know
Recommend this type of cage if you are going to devote to breeding and
reproduction .. Another detail to keep in mind is that gerbils often gnaw incessantly
metal bars of the cage, which can be annoying for you and harmful
Ideally, an approximately 50 liter aquarium / fish tank / terrarium if you have two gerbils
It is more economical, easy to clean, spacious, and allows you to display your creativity. However, it will be necessary to place a very secure lid, both to protect them in case you have other animals (especially cats) and to prevent them from escaping.
* Bed or forage:
Gerbils need a bed or forage that absorbs their urine, and that
also allow them to dig. Since they do not urinate too much, it is not necessary that
The material you use is scented. The best alternatives are
: poplar chip, Corncob, or marlo or corncob.
The shredded paper without additives also works, however, you must
change it much more often because it generates much more smell than fodder
NEVER use confetti that contains inks, perfumes or additives.
any kind. TAMPOCO VIRUTA DE PINO OR CEDRO
When the fodder or bed is changed frequently, it does not give odors of any kind, it would be approx. every three weeks. .Fill a third of the tank with the fodder. Gerbils love to stack it, dive and dig it, and bury their food. If your gerbils are reproducing, then about five centimeters of fodder. Will be
*The nest: A simple box will give your gerbils the privacy they need and a bun
place to sleep and hide.You can make a nest using a box
wood or cardboard, or buy any of those sold in stores for
pets Plastic houses are not recommended, since gerbils
they will gnaw completely in a week.
* The food:
It is recommended to use a good premix for gerbils. This is easier
Get the right combination of proteins, minerals and vitamins. Have
keep in mind that, although they love it, sunflower seeds are very high
in fats, and therefore, get very fat. A good idea is to separate them from
the portion and give them yourself throughout the day. This implies a double
benefit. First, no gerbil will accumulate and become fat, and
second. This is a great way to tame and narrow them
links with your gerbils.
The food can be placed directly in the forage or bed, in the
Acurario center, allowing gerbils to look for their food. As well
It can be served in ceramic dishes or tuna cans or food for
empty cats (always make sure the edges have no edges
dangerous. ). Most gerbils will bury and store their
food among the fodder This is the way they have to protect
Your food from the other gerbils. Don't worry, they will find their food without problems.
If you want to entertain them with something special, you can give them inflated cereals
(without sugars, molasses, or artificial aggregates of any kind).
They like peanuts or peanuts, apples, carrots, but you must remove it after a day and don't give them too much.
*Toys and Exercise:
Gerbils are very active animals, and they need an environment
entertaining. Wood pieces are an excellent toy.
WARNING: Make sure the wood is not treated with any
type of chemical product!
Special wooden toys can also be purchased at PetShops,
with varied ways, to play and gnaw.
Every time you finish a roll of toilet or toilet paper, do not throw away the
cardboard tube. give it to your gerbils. Put it in the aquarium and the gerbils
they will investigate, they will use it as a tunnel, and finally they will gnaw until
shreds They love it, but in a little while, they will leave everything choppy. For
those who have many gerbils, it is a good idea to ask relatives
, friends, coworkers, neighbors, and everyone who
keep these cardboard tubes, to always have a provision that
keep gerbils busy. The hardest cartons (tubes and boxes) are
even better since they last longer being harder to crack.
You can use the metal wheels that are sold for hamsters BUT ...
There are some precautions to keep in mind! First, for not
waste the internal space, hang the wheel with a wire
roof or lid of the cage or tank. This keeps it about 10 centimeters
An easy way to do this is by using hangers or brackets.
plastic.They are economical and can be easily removed.
Second, cover the wheel on the outside with a thick ribbon of
masking (paper tape, or painter's tape) ,. Do not use anything that contains
plastic or threads of any kind.Then cover the inner part with fodder,
this will prevent the gerbil from sticking its legs to the tape.
Some gerbils love their wheel, and they spend hours and hours there.
- Others will simply ignore it, no matter how many times you try to
GREAT CARE. The tails of the gerbils can get caught in
The wheels discovered and be amputated.
Gerbils are robust and sludable animals, so probably, with the
proper care and the necessary attention, they may never get sick. Do not
However, there are some health problems and diseases of which
we as gerbil owners must have knowledge:
-If your gerbil looks sick and reluctant and does not eat or drink,
please take it immediately to the vet.
-Puppies, old animals or gerbils under stress conditions are
the gerbils most susceptible to respiratory infections. The causes of
such infections range from viruses, bacteria to even one's own
ambient. Two very common irritants are Pino and Cedro shavings.
puppies that suffer a respiratory infection during weaning, can
be treated by placing Ornyclycline (Tetracycline) in the water. Buy it in
the bird section of your pet store, and guide yourself with the
Dosage for small birds, or canaries. The treatment should last at
minus ten days Feeding them with a milk substitute for kittens can
Help improve strength to overcome these infections. The symptoms to look for are: bristly or caked fur, a sound like a click-click, lack of vivacity,
If you have a gerbil that looks very sick, does not eat or drink, and has diarrhea, take it immediately to a veterinarian.
-Broken or Broken Tails: This is a problem that could easily be avoided. There are several causes:
that the tail is trapped in the bars of the cage, or of the wheel, or
Let the gerbil be lifted by the tail. This accident leaves a scar
ugly, hairless, but does not require veterinary care unless there is
infection. The exposed bone will dry out and fall in a few weeks.
WARNING. A jerboa should NEVER be taken by the tail, nor
even by the base of it.
-Scabies / Fleas: To see sit us gerbils have fleas. wrap your gerbil in some leaves
of sanitary paper (without perfumes or aggregates) leaving your head outside.
Wait a couple of minutes and open the paper and inspect carefully if
there are spots or small red "balls".
If you discover that your gerbils have fleas, you should buy a spray or
flea spray for use in hamsters or gerbils in the pet store or
The vet's office. It must be 0.66% Pirethrin
First , carefully clean the cage and all its accessories with a
little bleach (lavandinavian water) diluted in soap and water, then spray
everything including the aquarium inside and outside with the flea
(Obviously the drinking fountain will only be sprayed on its external part!).
put the fodder or bed, spray it too ..
Spray Old forage before putting it in a waste bag.
Close it well, and spray it on the outside, before putting it in a container for
waste with lid.
Spray your gerbils and make sure they are sprayed completely. Spray
also your hands carefully and pass them through the fur of the head of
your gerbils Massage gently to facilitate product penetration
In the skin of your gerbils.
Repeat the test with the paper daily, and spray them again every time
find “intruders.” You may need to follow these instructions
to the letter several times before completely getting rid of
-Diarrhea / Thyzzer disease:
Too many vegetables in your gerbil's diet can cause diarrhea. Yes
your gerbil normally has a diet rich in vegetables, just
Remove them and it will be fine.
Thyzzer disease is a highly contagious and deadly disease.
whose symptoms commonly include diarrhea Death ensues
usually 24 hours after the onset of the first symptoms. The
antibiotic treatment may not be able to save your sick gerbil,
but it will prevent contagion to others.
If your gerbil suffers from diarrhea of unknown origin, treat the entire clan
(group) with antibiotics.
- Zapateo: There are two reasons why a gerbil strikes: to warn others
members of your clan of a potential danger, or sexual arousal. Every
Once they are scared or sexually excited, the gerbils will make a
rhythmic and "dry" sound with its hind legs. Generally, only one of the
clan will do this, while the others will remain alert, with their ears
up, listening carefully.
-Grooming: Grooming is not only a way to stay clean, but also
It is a vital part of the social infrastructure of gerbils. The couples,
parents, and puppies will spend a good part of the day grooming
mutually. Regular grooming is an unequivocal symptom that everything
It works well in the family group.
-Fights: There are two different types of fights. Fights for fun and fights
serious. Fights "playing" often occur in gerbils,
Especially the puppies. They will be thrown over each other, sometimes even
"Boxing" softly, then chasing around the aquarium.
they will stand, leaning on the back legs and box, of the same
way you have seen kangaroos do.
In their natural habitat, gerbils live in a family group very
small.There is only one dominant couple that mates, and some of their
children of previous litters who take care of the youngest.
When one of the subordinates is ready to create his own family, he
Being in captivity, gerbils cannot leave. They are forced to live
like us humans, adapting best to the environment and
companions. Many of the fights can be avoided by following these
+ Never have more than two females together.
+ Never have more than four adult males together., Even if there are stories
successful with more than seven.
+ Never, never. Crosses more than one female per cage.
+ When a second litter arrives, leave only 1 to 3 more puppies
great to avoid overpopulation.
There are some alarm signals that indicate that the thing is about to explode:
Pay close attention if your gerbil has lost weight, or has marks of
bites in its tail, spine, or head, or yes, worst of all, no longer sleeps
in the nest with others. If you notice any of this, the pressure is
increasing without a doubt, and the serious fight is imminent. A way to avoid
the fights is to keep the habitat as simple as possible, with structures
open, and only one more closed box for the nest. When the gerbils
They fight, they are very violent and they often fight to the death. A
Once the blood has been shed, reconciliation is very unlikely.
- Marking the Territory: If you look at the stomach of your gerbil, you will see a kind of “patch” without
hair That is your scent gland and produces an oily secretion that
serves to mark the territory. They will mark everything in their
territory, even to family members! To do this they will scrub their
stomach or will mount the object or another gerbil.
- Digging Incessantly in the Corners: Many people confuse the habit of digging in the corners of their gerbils
With the need to leave. Is not that. It is an “excavation
stereotyped ”, and what the cause is the natural instinct of the gerbils of
bury things and make “wells.” It's totally normal
Disadvantages of gerbils as pets
Okay, it will be difficult to convince you of the benefits of the gerbil, or Gerbiles of Mongolia, starting with their small defects but this species, like us, has them. Do not miss them, I have written them for you below.
The first is that It has a tail. Personally I don't care, but many people I advise do seem to care. They are considered rats, but rats are lovely too! And if you don't believe it, I recommend you read this article and then give me your valuable opinion leaving your comment.
Second, another of his small problems, is that roe Everything he catches. They need to wear their teeth. And what would you do if they didn't stop growing? At least I would eat up to the legs of the table on which I write.
Anyway, ignoring both details, it is time for you to know these rodents more deeply.
Is one or two gerbils better?
You must keep them in pairs purchased at the same time. If you have a solitary gerbil, you can poorly tolerate the presence of a partner. In addition, two individuals will be warm and will keep company and even groom each other.
By the way, I advise females, males are very territorial and can fight each other.
THE IDEAL IS to have two females and acquire them at the same time.
To delve deeper into the fights between gerbils and see that I take them seriously, I have written an entry that will help you and your gerbil at this point.
Cage other than plastic
The typical metal cage of good size and several floors high, is a great option.
Here I leave an economic one that does not contain many plastic parts, and has two heights.
The larger the cage, the more comfortable your gerbils will be.
- Ventilate better.
- The bars allow you to climb the rodent and exercise.
- If you have several floors, gerbils will have more space.
- You can also place a plate with the food on top of the cage and prevent the food from mixing with the substrate
- When digging they can stain the surroundings of the cage.
advice: If your gerbil digs and throws everything on the ground, put the cage in a lower plastic container and solve the problem.
Large plastic container
Place as a cover, a grid that allows ventilation. You can do it with mesh and four pieces of wood. Take advantage of the plastic margins to anchor the lid to the container.
Finally, practice three small holes in one side of the container to place the drinking fountain, bottle type.
- Low cost.
- Do not throw anything out if they dig.
- You can place a large, flat wheel for them to exercise.
- You will not be able to see them more than above.
- The ventilation is worse.
- Gerbils reduce your field of vision.
Reuse an aquarium
I recommend an aquarium of at least one hundred liters.
- You can observe the gerbil, and he to you, in a clear way and without bars.
- Everything that is reusing means saving, the cost is low.
- It allows to place a large wheel for the gerbil to exercise.
- The rodent cannot eat it and escape.
- Fixing the drinking fountain to the glass is a test of ingenuity. Choose to use suction cups or wires to get it.
- You have to have a large unused aquarium, and it is not something that abounds there.
- Ventilate worse than cages, in extreme summer precautions!
Once you have chosen where you are going to have them, I advise you to take a look at the following article to choose the appropriate toilet bed.
What does a gerbil eat?
How food do you use I think specific for them complemented with hay. The hay will provide fiber and will serve to wear the teeth.
If you have nowhere to buy food for gerbils, use the hamster, but watch the animal's weight.
The stale bread They also love it and it helps them to tune their teeth. Choose loaf of bread - it looks like a slogan - they don't like the mold, at least mine.
The fruit, spinach, alfalfa,flour worms and the nuts, They are an excellent complementary contribution.
Walnuts give them whole, they will serve as a toy and to wear teeth. If you see that they are not able to open them, part them, but not with your teeth! if the gerbils have not been able to break them, neither can you.
Don't forget the WaterThey like fresh. In summer, try to change it daily and keep the drinking fountains always clean.
Water is of vital importance. It should always be available.
Finally, never give them ultraprocessed foods as snacks or treats.
A well-fed jerba can have about seven litters / year. The average of puppies is four per litter, amount that will fill your house with gerbils quickly and you will be overwhelmed.
Gerbils are very prolific.
Being animals that are little known and have a tail, it is difficult to get rid of them, therefore I do not recommend breeding unless you have the young.
The mother gerbil nests with the material available inside her cage. The use of hay will again be very important. You can also provide toilet paper, tissue paper or cotton hamster.
The nest is very important to shelter.
The gerbil nests are similar to those of the hamster so the following article will help you valuable.
The handling of the gerbil
It is essential that you do not take them from the tail, and if you are forced to do so, do it from the base.
Personally I take them with a plastic cup, I put them in it, and then I put them in my hand, so they never bite me.
The gerbil is a very clean animal. You don't need to wash them, they hate getting wet.
The more interactions with them, the happier and more comfortable they will be. You can take them out at home when they are already used to their surroundings, that is, when they eat hand in hand and do not hide when they see you. Whenever you take them out do it in a controlled place, with closed doors and no recesses to hide.
If you want to know more to train your precious gerbils, this article serves you but only change hamster for gerbil.
Well, now what do you prefer, a hamster or a gerbil as a small pet?
Help more people know these nice animals (despite having a tail!) By sharing the article on your social networks.
Thanks for reading!