What Can A Gerbil Eat? A Short Guide For Your Pet Gerbil

Even though a gerbil is a little animal to pet, its diet plan can be a bit complex. Originally being a wild animal, it’s not at all surprising that this animal needs special care when it comes to eating. You need to balance minerals, nutrients, and vitamins in its food to keep it healthy and happy.

Most experts argue that the formulated gerbil mix is the best food for your pet. But before you try to feed it to your buddy, you have to have a complete idea over it. Plus, there is some food that you need to keep away from your pet, too!

What Do Gerbils Eat As Pets?

Petting an animal is a challenging task. You need to confine it into a place that is not natural to him. That’s why you need to try your best to mimic the environment that it is inherited from. The same goes for gerbil food habits.

If you are petting a wild animal or at least an animal that has wild ancestors, you should try to stick to the natural food it takes as much as possible.

Gerbils need a balanced diet. You can’t give them the same food every single day. It will kill their appetite and weaken them. The best option you can find is to feed them with a formulated balanced diet.

Remember, this balanced diet should not be changed all of a sudden. You need to take your time before introducing something new. It is to be fed on a continuous basis.

How About Gerbil Food Mix?

If you are into buying a food mix for your pet from stores, then you can take the chance. For some pet owners, it is better to stick to these ready-made food mix packs.

This is because these mixes don’t just contain seeds. They also contain grains, beans, dried veggies, and fiber in the mix. This, in fact, is more similar to the natural diet of a gerbil in the wild.

But before you go out and buy a food mix for your pet, remember to read the packaging for these items in it.

  • Timothy hay.
  • Soya bean meal
  • Wheat
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Wheat feed
  • Corn flakes,
  • Flax seeds
  • Soya oil
  • Added vitamins & Added minerals.
  • Flaked soya beans

These ingredients make up a perfectly natural diet for your pet.

Is Mixed Food Good For Your Pet?

It’s a common question that pops up in the minds of most pet owners, and we can see why. Ready-made food is, by default, a matter of concern for most of us. But for the mixed food for a gerbil, you don’t have to worry.

Gerbil mixed food is formulated in a way that it contains the perfect amount of nutrients and vitamins. Moreover, it actually is made by mimicking the natural diet habit of a gerbil. It is also easy to feed.

But there is a catch. Not all the mix you find in the market is of the same value. For some mixes, you will find one ingredient to be dominating, while other ingredients are so little in amount.

This shouldn’t be the case. You need to read the mixture ratios thoroughly before you buy a food mix. Make sure all the ingredients are in perfect ratio.

Can You Make Your Own Gerbil Food?

It’s not that it is impossible, but it is actually a good idea to formulate your own gerbil mix food. It will give you more control over your pet’s diet. But before you decide to make a homemade food mix, you better understand that the ingredients that we have discussed here, should be in the mix at optimum proportion.

The food should be high in carbs, should have a good amount of protein, and a little bit of fat will be a good idea. The protein should be about 15 to 16%, and the fat should be around 2 to 20%. The remaining should be carbs.

Can Gerbils Eat Fresh Fruit?

This is an interesting question. As for wild gerbils, it is actually true that they do eat fresh fruit. Well, in some cases, it is better than old or cooked food. As fresh fruits and veggies contain a lot of nutrients for the health of a gerbil.

At home, you can also try it out, giving it a few treats of fruits and veggies. But this shouldn’t be a staple food for them. You can give fresh veggies and fruits to your pet once in a while as snacks. Nothing more than that is necessary.

What Fruit And Veggitables Should My Gerbil Eat?

As we said, you can give your pet a few treats of veggies and fruits. For fruits, you can go for apple, orange, melon, pear, etc. These should be given to it as supplementary food.

As for vegetables, there are a lot of options, as well. Cucumber, fennel, pumpkin, and carrot are some of the common veggies that gerbils like to eat at times.

Do Gerbils Need Fresh Water?

Interestingly, gerbils tend to drink less water than any other pet in your home. This has to do with its origin, mainly. As gerbils come from drylands and deserts of Central Asia, they do show a little bit of patience over water.

But that doesn’t mean that they don’t need water at all. You need to set up a water source for them to have constant access to it. Otherwise, they will get dehydrated and, eventually, get weaker.

A good option should be setting a water bottle on your gerbil cage. There are plenty of water bottles you can find on the market. Choose any as you like.

Gerbil Treats

As we discussed earlier, you can give your gerbil veggies and fruits as treats. But as these food come with mostly sugar, you need to limit the number of times you feed it to them.

Apart from these, gerbils eat insects, as well. These are high in protein and are very beneficial to your pet’s health. So, if you like, you can treat your pet with a few insects once in a while!

F​​​​​requently Asked Question

Can gerbils eat tomatoes?

Ans. Yes, fresh tomatoes are safe for your gerbil. You can give it a treat to your pet.

Can gerbils eat cabbage?

Ans. Yes, being from the vegetables, cabbage can be fed to your pet.

Can gerbils eat pineapple?

Pineapple is too high in water and acid. It is not suitable food for a gerbil’s health. A gerbil should not eat it.

Can gerbils eat blueberries? 

Ans. Blueberries are a quite safe food for gerbils. Even the skins of it are healthy to eat.

Can gerbils eat strawberries?

Ans. Strawberries don’t contain a good amount of nutrients and vitamins. Given that, you can feed your pet strawberries, but to a limited amount.

Final Words

Gerbils are fragile, yet very entertaining animals. As nutritionists say, you are what you eat; the same goes for gerbils as well. If you feed your pet all the food that contains all the necessary nutrients, you can rest assured that your buddy will keep being happy, entertaining, and healthy.


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