Want a small pocket pet? But, hamsters are too mainstream, right? Off-late, gerbils have become the number one choice for small pets. But they do require a lot of attention from their owners and that too on a daily basis. So, before buying or adopting this little powerhouse animal, there are a few things one must check!
1.Observe and pick
There are some body characteristics which should be checked to know if the gerbil is healthy. The best option is to observe them before purchasing or adopting. How active are they? Do they seem happy? Make sure they aren’t too fat or too skinny. Does it limp? If yes, then it might have some skeletal or muscular problem.
2.Look at the fur coat carefully
A healthy gerbil should have a sleek and shiny fur coat. If there are any patches or the skin is dried up, then it is an indication of infection. Of course, it is treatable, but one must be prepared to spend a lot on these treatments. It entirely depends on the owner if they want to buy a healthy gerbil, or cure the infected one to give it a new life.
Another thing to look for is the colour of its nose. A healthy gerbil should have a pink and clean nose. Remember, their mucus is red. So, if the little one has a red and crusty nose, then BEWARE! This pet might be allergic leading to a shorter life-span.
These fierce little creatures love to stay in pairs of two. So, if you find two gerbils already together, then please purchase the pair. Well, gerbils breed very fast, so it is recommended to keep two of the same gender unless you want accidental pups now and then!
Always keep in mind that gerbils are social animals and they love to keep company. They are hyperactive creatures. If a gerbil is extraordinarily lethargic, it merely means it is sick and needs immediate care and attention.
Just like gerbils, their owners also must be curious, right? Well, let us look at some frequently asked questions which might arise before bringing this new pet home!
Usually, a pet gerbil has a lifespan of two to three years, but if kept in excellent care, they might survive a year or two more.
These little fur balls love to play and have a natural chewing instinct. So, please DON’T give them plastic toys, as that might harm them. Instead opt for cardboard boxes, wood, or hay. Try to make tunnels or bridges in the cage itself so that they can run and jump.
Gerbils make adorable pets. After a certain period, they adopt the owner and consider them as a family. Rubbing nose is a sign of affection and acceptance by them.
They might wink if they are super happy or thankful about something.
Gerbils are foodies. Yeah, that’s right! They love to chew on fresh food especially a dry mix which consists of a mixture of various seeds, or dry food pellets. One can also feed them apple, banana, strawberries, cauliflower, carrots, pea, pear, and even unsalted peanuts. Ensure that they are supplied in small amounts because too much food can cause stomach upset for them.
Last but not the least; they need a lot of hydration daily. So, do not forget to give them water in large amounts in their cute little water bottles.
Get ready and bring home a new friend soon!