Gerbils tend to be cute, entertaining and exciting pets for both children and adults. Whenever they are handled delicately, these animals seldom bite and if you have the patience and time it is possible to bond with them. They have a tendency to burrow and dig, so during the day and night they are occasionally energetic. Generally, these animals have outstanding hearing and this will naturally give them all the time they need to get away from possible predators.
Gerbils are actually rodents originally from the desert areas in Africa and Mongolia. Since these animals adapt to warmer climates, generally they will need much less water compared to other rodents. For this reason, most people think that they are the ideal pets, because drinking less water will mean much less urine and equally less time spent cleaning their cage. If you are thinking about getting one of these rodents as a domestic pet, then continue reading to find tips on how to care and feed them.
Suggestions to care for pet gerbils
Whenever you are constructing a cage for this pet, remember that they are energetic burrowers that also love to explore so they should be given the right environment. These animals also love to chew on things, so it’s best to place them in cages which will make it hard for them to escape. It’s advisable not to use wood as a cage material, since they can easily gnaw their way out. Sufficient air flow is essential for their health because the ammonia from the urine could result in respiratory problems.
You need to provide adequate bedding for your pet gerbil, which could be material like shredded paper without toxic chemicals, composite pellets from recycled newspapers or wood shavings. Shavings from pine and cedar are not advised, since they consist of resins which can be aggravating to their eyes, mucous membranes and skin. Additionally, stuff such as paper towels, tissue paper and old socks or mittens could make great nesting materials.
Tips for feeding pet gerbils
When preparing vegetables and fruits for gerbil food, its best to wash them in order to get rid of pesticides, dirt or any other harmful chemicals. The food mixtures purchased at the store such as nuts and seeds must be iced overnight or a minimum of five hours prior to feeding. This is very important, because freezing could destroy any eggs or bugs, which can bring about disease or discomfort. Their meal portions should not be more than they can eat because gerbil will overeat if given the chance.
Having fresh clean water at all times will be essential for a gerbil’s health. A good suggestion would be to hang a bottle outside the cage instead of having a bowl of water. This way the water will not get dirty, but you still should change it on a daily basis.
By taking good care of your pet gerbil by giving it a proper place to live and feeding correctly will insure your pet giving you a lot of fun and many interesting scenarios during their lifetime. The healthier and happier you make them, the more active and playful they will be.