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Introductions

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Using a “split pen method”, Smellin’ Good spray, and having young gerbils to work with, I successfully introduced my breeders today! They are currently sleeping all snuggled together with their new mates in their appropriate tanks.

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The Doctor & River checkin' each other out.

The Doctor & River checkin’ each other out.

Amy watching Rory from a distance before going to greet him.

Amy watching Rory from a distance before going to greet him.

So excited to meet the babies someday. Currently they are a bit young to be interested in mating, but soon that should change.

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2014 in The Clan

 

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Pet Store Shortcuts

At the pet store where I work, we strive to take top notch care of the animals we have in our store. We treat any sick or potentially injured animals and are very proactive about their health.

However, sometimes shortcuts must be taken. Our animal provider generally sends odd numbers of gerbils. Three, five, seven, nine. No matter my efforts to sell them in pairs, there is always one sad gerbil left alone. When the next shipment of nine or so gerbils arrives, it is in the lone gerbils best interest to be reintegrated into the group. A huge no-no in most gerbil forums and websites. But I am here to tell you that not only is it possible, but it can take as little time as five minutes, requires no cage divider, and has a 95% success rate.

The reason gerbils attack one another is because they smell different. They don’t smell like one of their own “clan”. (Unless they are kept in restricted quarters and begin fighting for space.) The trick to introducing them peacefully is to mask their personal scent.

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Smellin’ Good is a pet safe deodorizer sold at our store. One small spritz on the rear end of all gerbils involved in the introduction and–at least with young male gerbils–they welcome one another with open paws! By the time they’ve rid themselves of the baby powder scented spray, they’ve been with each other for over an hour and are all sharing one smell. A newly formed clan!

I have literally introduced three groups of three with this method and come back to find all nine sleeping together in one hide house.

I cannot guarantee this method always works, just that so far it has always worked for me in a pet store environment. Tomorrow I am going to attempt it with mine, with much caution. I will post an update later.

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2014 in Gerbil Quirks

 

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Soft & Fluffy

Once a week you should offer your gerbils a dust bath! Gerbils cannot be bathed with water, as they have difficulty drying themselves and can become sick if wet for too long. In the wild, gerbils roll in sandy, dusty earth to clean the excess oils and possible parasites from their fur.

Chinchilla dust is the best option for your gerbils. It is affordable and long lasting!

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Place the dust in a container such as a glass bowl, mason jar, or gerbil bath house.

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Allow your gerbils at least ten or fifteen minutes to frolic in the dust and groom themselves. I personally enjoy using a mason jar on it’s side for their dust baths, so I can watch them roll around and clean their faces. Once finished, they will be soft, fluffy and cuddly again! (They may leave tiny, dusty footprints on your clothes!)

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2014 in Gerbil Care

 

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