a good habitat
The habitat must be chose with care because your
small friend will spend all its life in it. This one must be escape
proof but also protect your pet from exterior aggressions like cat, wind
draft or even from us!
I personally prefer aquarium to cages. They are more appealing and easier
to clean and use. You'll find here descriptions of different type of
habitat and their characteristics. It's up to you to make the choice.
The usual size recommended for a gerbil pair is 10
gallons/37Litres. The surface size must be around 25cm/10 inch by 50cm/20
inch, 1250cm2 /200inch2 .Take your length and make
sure that your cage or tank meets these sizes.But a larger aquarium or cage won't be bad! The bigger it is,
the better... in this case!
to the "Guide to care and use of experimental animals" published by
the Canadian Council on Animal Care (CCAC),
one gerbil would need of a minimum of 116cm2 /16inch2 floor
area size. This means a 10cm by 10cm. (4inch/4inch) this is small! On the other
hand, a mother with babies needs 900cm2 (144inch2)
this is approximately 30cm by 30cm (12 inch/12inch)
Meaning of the points
Cleaning: How easy it is to clean it.
Visual aspect: All the esthetic aspect and the
Practical aspect: If the habitat is easy on us.
Easy to carry, don't ask too much from us.
Recreational aspect: In the gerbil mind, is it fun for them?
3,75 / 5
is the ideal solution. The aquarium must be larger then high so that the air
can move freely. Don't forget to put a lid on the top! If you build it
yourself, make sure there is no wood piece reachable to the gerbil, if so, it
will gnaw it trough!
an aquarium can be more difficult due to the weight of it.
cages with tunnels (HabitrailType)
3,5 / 5
|This imitate the best a real gerbil network of
tunnel but the air circulation may be poor. The bedding can be expulsed from
it trough the bars. Also, this cage type is often a little too small for 2
adult gerbils. But if you can get many cage of that type and get them together,
it can be great! But then, cleaning all the tunnels can be a long job!
cage with plastic bottom.
3 / 5
|This could be a nice habitat
but the bars let the bedding pass thought when the gerbil digs. The plastic
base can be chewed thought if they manage to get a grip on it. And finally,
they will chew the bars all day long, which can become very annoying.
of the construction)
This may be a good idea for the handyman. On the other hand,
you have to follow some basic rules.
-No wood piece should be accessible to the gerbils, if it
does, they will chew it.
The mesh must be less then one cm wide (half an inch)
cages or tanks
||Just be sure to disinfect
them as necessary with Javel water or alcohol. Pay attention to broken glass
or twisted metal wires. If it is painted on the inside, don't take it.
made for other pets
||Other type of habitat can be used.
Look if they meet gerbil's needs
Guinea pig cages: The
bars can be too distanced and the plastic base can be too easy to chew.
Bird cages: The
removable basket at the bottom is not a really good idea. you'll have to
modify it by yourself. The maintenance may be then, more complicated. Beside
that, if you can install some stairs, stages and tunnels, this can make a
really nice place.
Rat cage: It's a
good idea but again, the gerbil will expel bedding all over the place.
2,25 / 5
|These are aquarium filled
with dirt and sand, to create a natural environment. Even if the gerbil will
have a lot of fun digging tunnels, cleaning this kind of thing can be very
difficult. Bacteria will grow fast in this type of place. If they manage to
dig a nice tunnel, it may fall apart and trap your gerbils. Reaching their
nest is almost impossible if one is sick or if you have babies.
it's better you don't try this
type of habitat at first. But if you want to try that, tell me about it! I'm
interested to see it!