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Gerbils Health

Gerbil Health Problems

 Submitted by Michael Adams on April 26, 2010

Gerbils are a small mammalian animal that are often confused with rats. Gerbils are generally between 6 and 12 inches long. Gerbils are notorious for the damage they cause to crops and grasslands and are banned as pets in some states.

Gerbils are kept as pets but must be treated differently to other rodent like pets that one might domesticate. Gerbils have extremely sharp teeth and can gnaw through soft wood and plastic. When you have a gerbil as a pet, make sure that it is in an enclosure that has high and hard walls.

Gerbils have a tendency to gnaw through almost anything and can cause considerable damage inside your house if left to roam free. Gerbils are otherwise good as pets as they tend to be docile and are social, meaning they can be kept with other gerbils without too much hassle.

There are several gerbil illnesses that might affect your pet. Gerbil health problems are now well documented because they have been kept as pets for many decades. Gerbils can suffer from many health issues. Gerbils are particularly susceptible to epileptic fits and seizures. There may be several triggers that can cause such a reaction in a gerbil. One of them involves blowing in the face of the animal. Gerbil seizures are generally not harmful in the long term.

Gerbils can suffer from teeth defects which occur during growth. Some gerbils have misaligned teeth which may cause many different oral problems for the animal. Misaligned teeth can damage the roof or base of the mouth and can lead to infection, bleeding, foul stench and loss of appetite. Loss of appetite has been linked to the pain caused to the gerbil while eating. A common infectious disease to affect gerbils is something known as Tyzzer’s disease. It can be serious and even lead to death. A hunched posture with ruffled hair is a sign of Tyzzer’s.
An important factor in gerbil health care is to ensure that the pet is fed properly and regularly. Gerbils are often neglected and therefore become malnourished and dehydrated. This is a serious health concern as it would be with all other animals and humans. Gerbil care involves being extremely gentle. Gerbils are susceptible to severe injury if dropped or injured by grasping the torso too tightly. It is important to educate your children, if you have any, about the vulnerability of a gerbil and how they should take care of it.

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