Gerbils are a common household pet. Most people choose gerbils as their first pet as they are low maintenance and do not require much attention. They are tiny social animals that like to stand on their hind legs, which is unlike other rodents, and they will chew through anything- which is something to be aware of when choosing their housing, make sure that they are not wood or wires.
They are little energetic creatures that your child might enjoy having as a pet. They are amusing, they usually enjoy running around their cages, and love to have some toys to play with, things like a running wheel are a gerbil favorite.
Gerbils are omnivores, meaning- in the wild, they feed on both plants and insects. While most people base their diet off of leafy greens, gerbils can and will feed on insects if available as they also need a little protein in their diet. They naturally feed on seeds of grasses, bulbs, and leafy greens and herbs. They mainly feed on seed mixes or have a pellet-based diet. You do not have to worry much about this as you can consult the pet store you got your little pet from and they can guide you to choose the best diet available for your pet gerbil. Gerbils can also get used to a specific diet and it might be hard for them to change their routine, so it’s easier to feed them the foods they’re familiar with and gradually make the changes you need to to make their diet healthier or more nutritious.
As a pet owner, you will be concerned if you’re doing your best in providing them with a diet that fulfills all their needs. You should know everything there is to know about what kind of foods to add or to avoid when feeding your pet gerbil. When doing your homework about these kinds of things, you may also want to know if certain treats are beneficial or harmful to your beloved animal.
Fruits are a common treat you feed your pet. And while pre-made mixes of fruits and vegetables are available for your pets, that contain all the nutrients your pet might need, you might be curious if you can feed your little pet something as simple as an apple lying around your house.
The answer is: yes, gerbils can eat apples. And here are some things you should keep an eye out for:
Should You Feed Your Gerbil Apples?
As the caretaker, you might be concerned if you’re doing your best in providing your little pet with all the nutrients they might need.
Apples are high in nutrition and can be used as a treat for your pet gerbil! Your pet might benefit from the various nutrients it contains but it is also important to know that apples have a lot of sugar and water content. When owning a gerbil as a pet, you must know that they can’t handle a lot of sugar and water in their diet. So, it’s necessary to make sure that you don’t feed them too many apples and make sure that their diet is balanced and does not cause any problems- as the high sugar content might lead to weight gain which can become a health risk.
If you’re wondering if apple cores or bark are edible- yes, they are! They are one of the best treats you could give to your gerbil. They love the taste and smell of it.
They can also eat apple skins or apple cores. They are completely safe.
How To Feed Apples To Your Gerbil
Apples are a fruit that contains copious amounts of nutrition that any pet needs. They aren’t only tasty snacks that your pet gerbil will enjoy munching on but they’re also beneficial in many ways.
While apples are a basic fruit we add to our daily diet, as the saying goes: An apple a day keeps the doctor away! However, this does not apply to your little pet. Feeding them apples every day is not something you should do. They should be treated with apples twice a week. Since apples have low-fat content, this is good for your gerbil as foods with high-fat content can harm your pet’s digestive system and should be avoided.
Chewing on an apple might be hard for your little pet. You can cut the apple into little pieces, so it’s easier for them to chew on and digest.
This fruit contains fiber, which every gerbil needs to maintain its high digestive motility and so it helps maintain the healthy functioning of the gerbil’s digestive system.
Considering apples are a fruit, there isn’t much to worry about when feeding them to your pet gerbil. They are a treat for them, and they will enjoy feeding on them in any way.
You can feed your pet gerbils raw apples. Just make sure they’re washed and are free of any chemicals that might affect their system.
Cooked apples are another way to feed apples to your pet gerbil. If you’re feeding store-bought cooked apples, it is important to check the ingredients used to cook them and if any of them are potentially harmful to your pet. Too many additives can be risky.
Dried apple slices are found in the majority of the pre-made diet mixes available at any pet store for your pet gerbil. But you can even make these by yourself! Take your apple slices and dry them out. Add them to their diet and treat your pet gerbil to them any time. You don’t have to worry about store-bought dried apple slices at all.
When feeding your pet gerbil apples, make sure that they are thoroughly cleaned as they might’ve been sprayed by chemicals like pesticides that might affect your pet gerbil’s health.
Apple purees or apple sauces are a no! These contain high water and sugar content, both things that are not okay to feed to your little pet. These are the two things you need to actively avoid when managing your diet.
Can Apples Be Dangerous For Your Gerbil?
All households have apples lying around and it might seem like the most convenient snack to feed your pet, as they are nutritious and available in all the seasons. While apples are one of the most popular snacks to treat your pet gerbil to, there are some potential dangers you should keep an eye out for.
Apples contain a lot of sugar. This is something that you have to be careful about when feeding your pet gerbil. The high sugar content can cause weight gain in your pet. The weight gain might lead to obesity, causing more health problems and slowing down their usual energetic selves. And so, it’s necessary to limit the number of apples in your pet’s diet to once or twice a week. This potential risk can also be managed by weighing your pet once in a while and paying attention to its energy levels.
The high-water content is also not suitable for your pet’s delicate digestive system. Since gerbils do not require a lot of water, the extra water content might upset their stomachs and cause them to be sick.
Apples also contain a lot of iron, which can cause some potential tummy aches in your little pet.
You might want to make sure that this does not affect their delicate digestive system.
When feeding your gerbil apples, make sure to get the seeds out as they are toxic for them. When chewed, apple seeds release cyanide which can severely affect your pet gerbil’s diet. Apple cores are also very hard for your gerbil to eat so it’s best to avoid them as well.
When keeping a pet gerbil, there isn’t much to worry about. They have a basic diet and don’t require much special attention. You can make things easier for yourself by buying ready-made food mixes from pet stores that provide all the nutrients your pet might need while making sure that they’re safe and non-toxic and don’t trigger any potential health risks that you might want to avoid as to not shorten your little pet’s already very short lifespan.
Your responsibility as a pet owner is to make sure all their needs are met and you’re doing everything you can to take care of them.
There aren’t many concerns to be aware of when feeding your pet gerbil something like an apple, as fruits are a part of their daily diet. It’s a healthy snack that your pet will love to eat. They can be treated by feeding them apples every once in a while, and keeping the potential dangers in mind- you can be a responsible pet owner. And if any concerns arise, it is always good to contact your local veterinarian and consult them for the best advice for your little pet that you want to keep around for a long time and make sure that they live a healthy fulfilling life.