What to Feed Your Gerbil

Have you recently decided to get a gerbil as a pet? Gerbils are very popular pocket pets, and for good reasons. These gentle little rodents are super cute and curious, and they are also fairly inexpensive and easy to take care of. One reason gerbils are very popular is that they don’t produce a lot of urine, which makes for a clean, non-smelly cage. There are some specific do’s and don’ts when it comes to caring for your gerbil, however, especially regarding diet and nutrition. Read on for some basics about what to feed your gerbil as described by your veterinarian Livonia.

Gerbils in the wild eat a mixture of grasses, roots, and seeds, and tend to store food stashes for winters. It’s recommended that you give your gerbil enough variety to keep him from getting bored with the same-old-same-old thing meal after meal. Therefore, a mix of different foods and treats is best. Just be sure to introduce new foods gradually.

Seed Mixes

Seed mixes are a popular choice for gerbils. Gerbils need about 12 percent protein and roughly 7 percent fat in their diets, so check the labels. You might catch your pet picking out choice bits and hoarding them for later, but don’t be tricked into giving him more of his favorites, as feeding too much of one type of thing can lead to a nutritional imbalance.

Pellets or Lab Blocks

The benefits of pellets or lab blocks are that they are nutritionally balanced, and your pet can’t just nibble at his favorite morsels. Lab blocks have undergone a lot of scientific study, and are very good nutritionally. Your little buddy may find them a bit boring, though, so don’t feed them exclusively.

Treats and Supplements

Just like any other pet, gerbils love treats! You can give your pet fresh fruits and vegetables. Apples, bananas, carrots, broccoli, leaf lettuces, cauliflower, turnips, dandelion greens, and berries are fine if given in small amounts. Make sure to thoroughly wash fruits and vegetables before giving them to your gerbil. Your pet will also enjoy raisins, melon seeds, currents, and small pieces of cheese or egg as special treats. On occasion, you can feed your gerbil dog biscuits, mealworms, unsweetened cereal, whole-grain bread, nuts, and sunflower seeds. Avoid cabbage, potatoes, onions, uncooked beans, chocolate, raw kidney beans, potato leaves, rhubarb leaves, tomato leaves, candy, and junk food.

Please contact us with any questions about caring for gerbils or any other pocket pets. As your vet clinic Livonia, we are here to serve all of your pet care needs.

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