Gerbils are a favorite house pet, but can gerbils eat dog food? It’s probably not a good idea to feed them that type of food. Not only is it not good for their little bellies, but they might also get sick. It can cause diarrhea which will make them very unhappy and uncomfortable.
Gerbils have omnivorous diets that typically consist of seeds and grains in their natural habitats. They also eat insects and plants when available.
As such, gerbils don’t need too much protein in their diet. It makes dog food a poor choice for them to eat. Gerbils do better on a high-fiber diet with different kinds of veggies and fruits added into their normal seed mix or pellet feed. So, let’s see in detail how dog food is not a good choice for gerbils?
1. Why Dog Food Is Not Good For Gerbils?
As mentioned before, gerbils have a very high-fiber diet. Dog food does not have any fiber in it at all. Thus, feed dog food to your gerbil and he will get constipated if eaten for a day or two and his stool will become bigger and harder than normal.
Also, since there is no fiber in dog food, your gerbil will not get enough roughage for his teeth. The lack of chewing will make the teeth weak. So it is better to avoid feeding dog food to gerbils.
2. What Gerbils Should Be Fed Instead Of Dog Food?
The best alternative for dog food is to feed your gerbil with dog treats. Dog biscuits are usually made of hard corn and wheat flour. They will help to clean their teeth as they chew on these biscuits. Make sure that the dog treats you provide are not too big or small for your little gerbils.
3. Why Feeding Dog Food To Gerbils Can Be Dangerous?
Dog food can also make your gerbils sick. It does not have any nutritional value that can help prevent health issues or infections in the body of your pet. Gerbils are very susceptible to diarrhea. Feeding them dog food will be dangerous for them.
Gerbils usually suffer from diarrhea because they cannot digest complex carbohydrates easily. There are no enzymes present in their stomachs. Feeding them dog food or other highly processed foods would only complicate things further.
Also, gerbil’s immune system works differently than humans and cannot fight off common infectious diseases like cold or flu. So, feeding dog food to them would expose them to the risk of getting these diseases in their small bodies and weak immune system.
4. Can Gerbils Eat Food Left Over By Dogs?
Yes, gerbils can eat leftovers from dogs, but it is not advisable to feed them with food that was left for several hours. You should give them fresh food which has been left out only for a few minutes. Bacteria might grow on the leftover food in time. It will make your pet sick or cause tooth decay in him.
Also, most cats like chicken and turkey meat. It is better not to feed your gerbil chicken or turkey unless you are sure they were fit for human consumption when cooked.
5. When Do Gerbils Can Eat Dog Food?
Gerbils can eat dog food only when it is necessary. For instance, if your gerbil’s feedstock has run out and you need to buy more until you can get the feedback home again, then it is better to give them something in the meantime like dog biscuits or treats.
Also, sometimes gerbils might tend to take a liking towards certain snacks or crumbs that they find on the floor or on your bed. You should never let them stay there long enough for bacteria to grow though because this could cause serious problems resulting in the death of your pet.
Make sure you pick up all crumbs and other waste materials regularly from their habitats and place them far away from any direct contact with your pets
Gerbils can eat dog food only during times of extreme starvation. They cannot digest it properly, so giving them dog food will lead to more health issues for them. Make sure you feed your gerbil healthy food like vegetables and fruits which are better for their digestion system.
Also, make sure that the dog treats do not have anything artificial in them. These things are harmful to small animals like gerbils. Overfeeding of any kind is not allowable either as it might cause obesity in rodents. It can cause other major health problems down the road. So using a variety of veggies and homemade treats should be encouraged instead.
6. How To Prevent Gerbils From Eating Dog Food?
You can prevent your gerbil from eating dog food or junk food by always keeping a clean habitat. Make sure you provide them with fresh healthy fruits and vegetables daily in limited amounts. If the diet has few unhealthy snacks, then it is not going to have any effect on their health, so they would be more likely to eat good stuff over bad.
Also, try not to give your pet too much junk food or leftovers since this might lead him towards becoming addicted to it and he might start pestering you for these all the time which will lead him towards getting obese. It is better if you pick up all leftovers regularly from around their shelters.
7. Can Dog Food Be Good For Gerbils?
Dog food is not good for gerbils because it causes digestive problems in them. They suffer from vomiting and diarrhea due to their inability to digest it properly. Also, since their immune system is weak, they cannot fight any kind of common infection which might cause death if left untreated.
Always keep your dog food out of the reach of your pets so they do not get themselves addicted to it or fall sick because of it. Instead, give them fresh vegetables and fruits daily during every mealtime which will provide enough nutrients for their growth while keeping them away from unnecessary stress.
8. Are Gerbils Good Pets For Kids?
Gerbils can be great pets for kids provided that you take proper care while handling them. Any kind of injury to their bodies can become critical since they are small wild animals, so it is advisable for parents to teach kids the proper precautions while handling them so that maiming does not occur.
Also, parental supervision should always be done while children play with gerbils because injuries could lead to infections if left untreated which might be fatal in these types of situations. Also, gerbils bite pretty hard whenever they feel threatened or frightened by something. You should avoid letting your young ones handle them alone lest some harm comes their way.
9. Can Gerbil Die From Eating Dog Food?
Gerbils cannot die from eating dog food alone. But you should be careful since they might get addicted to it and keep begging for more which will lead them towards getting obese. Overweight gerbils might suffer from heart and lung problems in the future because of their fat bodies.
Make sure you limit their intake of potatoes, chips, and other junk foods by restricting their access to these things in your home. Instead, buy healthy snacks like nuts and fruits which are much better for their health in comparison to processed ones.
Also, avoid leaving leftovers lying around on the floor or near their habitats as this might lure them towards eating bad stuff all the time which can damage their digestive system over time leading to serious diseases.
Conclusion: Can Gerbils Eat Dog Food?
It is better if you give your gerbils fresh vegetables and fruits daily in limited amounts. Overfeeding them with junk carbs will not have any effect on their health but it might cause obesity problems in the long run which can damage their heart, liver, or kidneys. Can Gerbils Eat Dog Food?
You should also avoid letting your pets eat anything that falls to the floor. They tend to have high bacterial content due to being in contact with slugs, bacteria, germs, dirt, etc making these things unsafe for consumption. Also, try not to give your pet too many treats. It might make them sick over time leading to death.