Gerbil: character, breeding, care

The gerbil is a curious, lively, and company-loving small rodent. If you decide to adopt it as a pet, it is always advisable to guarantee the company of at least one other specimen.

The gerbil is a small rodent belonging to the Cricetidae family . Native to the arid and dry areas of the planet, it is able to significantly limit the dispersion of water. It comes , in fact, from Mongolia and the desert of northern China .

The adoption of this animal at home requires the need for time to devote the right care and attention. This little rodent tends to be alert, active, and curious throughout the day. It is a social animal for which it loves to live in groups and interact with its human companions.

To avoid adaptation problems it is advisable to raise at least one pair of gerbils together. These small rodents require care and attention so it is good to evaluate the time available before proceeding with the adoption.

Domestic Gerbil

It usually weighs between 52 and 133 grams and measures 12 cm in length. To the measure of the body it is necessary to add the length of the tail, which oscillates between 6 and 12 cm. Males are slightly larger and heavier than females. In general, this animal has a sharp muzzle and hardly visible ears due to its very small size.

Both male and female specimens have a particular odoriferous gland  called Harderian . This gland on the belly allows the smell to be emitted on objects or other animals by spreading a substance rich in pheromones.

Sand baths can be useful to allow you to eliminate the excess substance. Among other things, the typical sheen of the fur of these animals is also due to this substance. Under ideal conditions, this indoor pet lives up to 3 years on average.

Black Gerbil

The hair of this rodent has a basically dark hair. This chromatic effect is due to the presence of dorsal hair with a gray base in which there is a central yellow band with black tips.

Mongolian Gerbil

Among the various species of gerbil, the Mongolian one is the most suitable for growing in a home environment. Originally from arid and sandy areas, this specimen is ideal in the home for its small size, for its character and for its ability to adapt.

In fact, it has no particular problems in settling in climatic and housing situations that are very different from those from which it comes. It is an intelligent and nice-looking animal, able to keep company and show itself lively. Originally from the steppe of Mongolia, it is used to very harsh climates.

Its enemies in nature are mainly birds. He may be able to escape from the attack by jumping or hiding in the underground tunnels. This animal, in fact, is a very skilled digger .

Gerbil Nature

With an extremely curious nature , the gerbil is a not very courageous animal so it tends to show a cautious behavior in front of new and unknown situations. Being small in size it is able to move almost anywhere. He does not usually behave aggressively but can bite if extremely frightened. However, thanks to his considerable caution this happens quite rarely.

In case of danger, you can observe how the animal tends to position itself on its hind legs, slamming them on the ground. This signal has an important value in nature as it allows to signal an alarm for a potential danger to other gerbils.

How a gerbil cage should be made

When you decide to bring gerbils into your life, it is good to read up on their ethological needs and their needs. First of all, they must be guaranteed an appropriate and clean environment. The space must be large enough to allow the two specimens to live together peacefully.

It is advisable to take two gerbils of the same, preferably not unknown to each other to avoid problems. It is preferable to use a terrarium, rather than a cage which may prove too cramped.

Within this space there must be shelves and high shelves on which the animal can climb. The presence of a sandbox is also very important, given the gerbil’s passion for digging. Wheels, tunnels and other elements capable of stimulating and promoting physical exercise will be appreciated.

Gerbil price

Usually the price for the purchase of a copy starts from $15 to $20. However, we recommend purchasing a pair of gerbils. However, it is preferable to encourage the adoption of this animal with an exchange between individuals.

In this way it is possible to take animals that have already grown together and that will not have problems of coexistence in the future. In addition, it is very important to inquire about the presence of a veterinarian who may be experienced in the care of these rodents.

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