Gerbil Care FAQ

How long do gerbils live?

With proper care and nutrition gerbils can live 3-4 years or longer.  Some gerbils have even been reported as old as 6!  Our oldest gerbil was about 4.5 when he passed on.

If gerbils are desert animals, do they need water?

YES!  Wild gerbils are adapted to arid environments, but our furry, domesticated little friends are not and must have access to fresh water daily.

Can gerbils live alone if I give them a lot of attention?

Yes, but they won't be happy.  No matter how much you interact, you simply cannot replace another gerbil.  The only time it is advised to allow a gerbil to live alone if is they have shown severe aggression (rare) or if they are elderly and have lost their cage mate.  Elderly gerbils can accept friends, but you will then be caught in a cycle of having to introduce new friends as each older gerbil passes on.

Can I put two unfamiliar gerbils together?

Gerbils must never be introduced without using the split cage method!  Gerbils are very territorial and will fight without a proper introduction and that fight can be to the death!  To learn more about how to conduct a split cage introduction please go here.

Do gerbils stink?

They can have a little smell to them, but they do not have a strong odor like mice, rats, or even hamsters.  They do not urinate nearly as often as their pocket pet counterparts and are easily "litterbox trained".  I often feel that the aspen bedding has a more pungent smell than the gerbils themsevles do!

Do gerbils bite?

Anything with teeth has the capability to bite, but gerbils are incredibly gentle little creatures and rarely bite intentionally.  Often they will smell a treat you once had in your had and will give a little "nibble", but gerbils rarely bite aggressively.  I have only ever been bitten once and it was when I was in the process of breaking up a gerbil fight.  The gerbil didn't bite me, my hand happened to be in the wrong place.

How many gerbils can live together?

That all depends on if they are male or female.  The best decision is to only have a pair of males or a pair of females, but if you want more, you should consider no more than three males.  Females should never be kept in groups of larger than two, they tend to be less stable due to the matriarchal nature of gerbils and fights/declanning are more likely to occur.  Males are a little bit more laid back and a trio will typically live in harmony.

Which is better, males or females?

There is no difference, both genders are fun and will fill your life with joy and laughter!

Why should I join the American Gerbil Society?

There are a multitude of benefit by being an American Gerbil Society member.  You will have access to a plethora of information, resources, and can register all of your gerbils.  The more members we have, the more often we can have gerbils shows as well.  In order for a show to be held out west, we need more local members!  

Why do you include AGS membership in your adoption fees?  Do you get a kickback?

Absolutely not!  Our only benefit is growing the local/regional membership getting us that much closer to having a gerbil show in our neck of the woods!  We include the membership as we want to make it as easy as possible for new members to join.  We are not breeding gerbils to make a profit, we are breeding them to further the health of the species and bring more awareness to how wonderful these animals are.  Including membership to the AGS seemed like commonsense! 

Why is there a waitlist?

For some reasons gerbils are no longer available like they were years ago.  Due to their scarcity they are in higher than normal demand and a waitlist is necessary to ensure all litters have homes awaiting and so that more people have the opportunity to adopt these wonderful little creatures!

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