Sunday, June 16, 2013


Today is the first day of the WEEK OF THE GERBIL!

Anyone who has ever cared for or watched a gerbil knows how cute they are! They borrow, they chew, they chase each other around. Adorable. But what is a gerbil?

The Mighty Gerbil!
Gerbils are mammals from the rodent family. Many people say if a mouse and a hamster could mate and produce a living young, the gerbil would be the hybrid! This is no doubt due to their hamster-like cuteness and body structure and mouse-like tail and feet. Many years ago, gerbils were known as "Desert Rats." Gerbils today, are a gentle yet hardy animal that is very popular as a pet.

A gerbil is usually around 12 inches long-The tail counting for at least half of it's boys length. The average adult gerbil weighs in at about 2.5 ounces (70 grams). The furry little creatures are diurnal, meaning they are most active during the day. (A big difference when you think about hamsters who are crepuscular: active in mornings and evenings) Gerbils live around 4-5 years.
Gerbils prefer to live in same sex pairs, and due to their social nature can grow to love their human caregivers very much. This, coupled with the fact that they rarely bite (unless threatened) makes them excellent pets for children. Gerbils have also adapted to captivity over the decades. Their bodies actually require less water-meaning they have to urinate less-meaning their cage won't get dirty very fast! Also, they have adapted their urine to be almost odorless (to people anyway) so their cage won't stink! They do have scent glands on their stomachs, though we humans would be hard pressed to smell those too. But gerbils can sometimes be seen rubbing their tummies on things and each other!

Like other rodents, a gerbil's teeth never stop growing. Give him/her chew sticks so he/she can wear them down. Gerbils, though they keep themselves clean, love a dust bath once in a while. It will make their fur soft and it's fun to watch them dig and roll in the sand!

These little creatures are also very active. Multi-level habitats are ideal. Make sure to give them an exercise wheel. If you want, you can also put them in an exercise ball and let them roll around the house!

So after reading this, don't you understand why I've dedicated a week to these adorable little creatures?! There a handful of fun! I'll post tomorrow guys!

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