For many people, the gerbil is a better pet than even cats or dogs. Unlike other rodents such as mice and rats that are often dirty and carry disease, these small mammals from North Africa have beautiful long coats of fur which makes them great for cuddling. They also love to play with their owners. If you want an animal companion who likes being handled but doesn’t like biting back (most times), then this might be just what you’re looking for.
How much does a gerbil cost?
Well, it will typically be around $5 to $15. Purchasing your new friend from a pet store is cheaper than buying them directly from the breeder.
A gerbil at PetSmart costs less than other stores, with prices starting as low as 11 dollars.
If this is the first time you will be owning a gerbil, be prepared to spend roughly $100 initially on everything related to the gerbil and its needs.
This is not your typical pet. Gerbils are social creatures by nature and will surely find comfort in the presence of a fellow gerbil companion. If you choose to get one alone, they may have difficulty adapting to their new surroundings, be overweight from overeating, or lack activity due to loneliness. At least according to the American Gerbil Society. This means that when spending on the pet, you should consider spending at least double.
The Twinqueaks website suggests that adopting a pet may be cheaper than buying one from the store. They note, however, that you should expect to pay about $7-$10 when purchasing at retail price.
Gerbils are clever, playful creatures. If you’re looking for a good pet to keep your hands busy with, then gerbils may be just the thing! It is important that gerbil care instructions come included when buying one so it can have an enjoyable life. A lot of information about caring and handling them comes in handy and can be found online or on Pet Info Packets. The average lifespan of a gerbil is about three years.
The color of a gerbil can range from white to black, with different shades in between. Most will have deep eyes that are either red or black. More than 100 species live throughout Africa and Asia but the most common pet is Mongolian Gerbil, followed by Pale Gerbils.
Extra expenses to consider
Gerbils need a gerbil cage to live in. These cages are often made of metal or plastic and can come with tubes for the animals to crawl through and play on. They usually cost between $40-$60 online, but there is plenty of room inside so your pet will have space to exercise.
The bottom of the cage should be lined with bedding. This lining is changed about once every two weeks to avoid odors and keep things fresh. The cost for this bedding can range from $9-$16 depending on what type you wish, but each bag will last an average of 2 months.
The average cost of gerbil food will range from $10 to $20 per bag, depending on the size. The larger bags generally come with a better price-per-unit compared to smaller ones so it makes sense that bulk buying is preferable! This would last you about two months’ worth of meals for your pet without any problems or worry at all – they are quite easygoing when it comes to their diet. Gerbils like eating various seeds, fruits, and vegetables.
You can buy a variety of gerbil toys to have fun with your little critter. These include balls for out-of-cage exercise, tubes and slides that attach right onto their cage, and chewable toys. Prices range from just $3 up to about $20.
Gerbil wheels are a necessary purchase for any gerbil owner. Gerbils need to have enough exercise on their wheel or else they may become depressed and inactive, which is dangerous as it can lead to health problems such as diabetes.
Important tips to remember
Gerbils are happiest when they have a mate. The perfect combination is two gerbils in one cage, preferably of the same gender to avoid any reproduction problems.
Gerbils are unruly animals and it is important to keep them in a cage with ample space. They should have room to roam around the length of their habitat. If they seem claustrophobic or if you feel that there isn’t enough flooring then don’t hesitate from getting another enclosure. You should also try to avoid pulling the tail of the gerbil, no matter how much you’d want to because it can lead to damage.
The Humane Society recommends a gerbil for kids over the age of eight. Kids this old are usually able to handle them gently, but it’s important to teach younger children how they should be handled too. Gerbils tend not to do well with loud or sudden noises and movements – so make sure you keep these things in mind when picking out your new pet.
California and Hawaii have both outlawed the possession of domesticated pet gerbils due to their potential for establishing vast populations that will ravage food sources.
Hamster or gerbil – What should you get?
Many people are curious about the differences between a hamster and a gerbil. While they may look quite similar, there are some subtle distinctions worth noting: A typical hamster can grow up to seven inches in length while most gerbils only reach six inches at their maximum size.
A gerbil’s tail is typically close to four inches with hair on the end, while a hamster has a one-inch tail that is stubbier. Their nose size and shape are different as well.
Hamsters and gerbils are both cute little creatures with their own characteristics. Hamsters tend to be more laid back when compared to a gerbil’s energy, but they can bite if you hold them for too long – especially the females. Gerbils will rarely bite and love being held.
Gerbils are most active during both day and night, while hamsters tend to sleep in the daytime. Hamsters will hoard their food by stuffing it into cheek pouches as a form of self-preservation – not so much for gerbils.
Is there any way to spend less?
You can find an adoptable pet for free if you look hard enough. You may have to check with local adoption centers or even the nearest pet store, but usually, these gerbils are given away at no cost or for a small donation. If that doesn’t work out, try checking your neighborhood Humane Society because there is a chance that there will be a gerbil up for adoption there.