Replace a gerbil mother


Many reasons can explain why babies should be hand fed. Mother too old, sick, passed away, aggressive or overloaded. To check if the babies are well fed, there should be a white mark on the side of their belly. It's their stomach full of milk. 

On this picture, the babies are not even 24 hours old. You can see over the stomach (white arrow) a darker area, it's their liver. You can also see the veins on the head.

If the mother can take her role anymore, you have 2 choices. An adoptive mother or hand feed the babies. 


It is possible that you have another female with babies with almost the same age. (1 week difference) If you do, here is what you'll have to do. Take out mom and dad but leave their babies there. Place the orphan babies with them and rub them gently into the bedding, this way, they'll get the sent of the family. Then, place the dad. He will smell them and clean them. I never heard of a dad attacking the new babies, and I often use this technique myself. Wait for 5 to 10 and observe if everything goes well. Then add the mother. Check carefully her actions. There usually won't be any problem, but when the babies are too old and have a lot of fur, the mom can attack them. The fur holds the sent a lot better then bare skin. Older the pups are, harder it will be to give them in adoption to a new mother.


Hand feed

Nothing equals the mother milk and care. Veterinaries do sell milk formula for every kind of animal even gerbils. But if you don't want to pay too much, you can make your own recipe. Go to the next page to see receipt made by the veterinaries Manon Tremblay, specialized in exotic animal and who wrote the book: "La gerbille" édition Le jour.



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