Can Gerbils Live Alone? (Explained)

A friend recently bought a Gerbil and he is over the moon. As someone who writes about pets, he came to me to find out if Gerbil can live alone. I took it upon myself to research the question. Continue reading to find out more.

Here’s If Gerbils Can Live Alone

Gerbils shouldn’t live alone? Gerbils are very sociable creatures and are known to live in groups. They tend to thrive well in groups. It is amazing when you watch them live in groups. This confirms they hate living alone. You can still keep only one Gerbil but that requires a lot of attention and love from you.

In the wild, they form groups of 2 to 15. Having the same sexes living together is encouraged if you choose to keep one as a pet. Note that when you bring two unfamiliar adult gerbils together it can be very stressful for the two.

Can gerbils live alone?

Why Gerbils Should Not Live Alone?

To have happy gerbils it is important you get a pair. Owning only one gerbil is not the best idea. Gerbils are social creatures and will depend on each for companionship. They also need safety and security to thrive.

Here are the reasons Gerbils should not live alone:

  • Gerbils living alone will experience some sort of stress
  • Gerbils thrive well in pairs. In the wild they live in groups so should be allowed to live alone unless one passes on and the other has just a few years to live

Can Gerbils Live Alone After One Dies

The average lifespan of a Gerbil is about 3 to 4 years. So if one of your Gerbils passes away it leaves the question of how the other one will survive. Gerbils are not naturally used to living alone.

If this happens you must find a way of making your Gerbils enjoy the rest of her life. You must get involved more in the day-to-day living of the surviving gerbil.

If your gerbil is still young you can get another gerbil to keep the current Gerbil company.

However, if your Gerbils has a few years to live it is advisable to allow keep her alone. This is a very contradicting statement as gerbils are known to do better when they live in pairs.

Bringing a new gerbil carries some risks. For example, it can be stressful for an old gerbil. This could be due to bonding.  You can still go ahead to get a new gerbil. But you must take all the necessary precautions when you introduce your new gerbil to the old one.

How To Introduce Gerbils

So you have decided to get your gerbil a new addition so both can live happily. But wait a minute. You cannot put both together in the same cage.  The best way to introduce your gerbils is to make sure you have a large cage and use the split cage method.

You split the cage with a wireframe or you can buy a premade cage for the two. Make sure the cage is split so both gerbils can see, and smell each other.

You also swap them occasionally so they can pick each other’s scent. Leave them in the cage for a couple of days. They should be able to live without the barrier after say 3 to 4 days.

You must still keep an eye on your gerbils so they do not fight and injure each other.

Below is a video of the split cage method for introducing your Gerbils.

What Is The Minimum Floor Surface Required By A Pair Of Gerbil?

Gerbils are known to be jumpers so you must ensure you get the right size of tank for your pairs. According to research, the minimum floor surface required by a pair of gerbils is  40 cm by 75 cm and at least 30 cm high.

When Should A Gerbil Live Alone?

There could be many reasons why a Gerbil should live alone. This is not the best idea but sometimes circumstances beyond your control can result in your hamster living alone.

Here are some of the reasons a Gerbil may live alone:

  • If one of your Gerbils has passed on the other left is old, you don’t want to stress her by introducing a new Gerbil. You rather be helping the old one by giving a lot of love and attention.
  • If your Gerbils do not like the sight of other Gerbils, it is not ideal to keep them together in the same cage. You want to avoid stress and fighting. It’s better to live your hamster life alone.
  • If your Gerbil is injured or sick. It is best to allow for some period of quietness and peace. Under such circumstances you want to make sure your hamster lives alone, If after some period your hamster has recovered you can introduce your hamster to the split tank method.
  • If you have decided to stop keeping gerbils then you should not get an additional one.

Can Gerbils Live With Other Animals?

We have established the fact that gerbils should not live alone. But that should not mean you should put them together with other animals. You should not put animals from different groups and pair them with gerbils.

This can be stressful for your Gerbils. So other small animals like hamsters, mice, guinea pigs, and rabbits should not be put together in the same cage as gerbils.

Final Thoughts

So can Gerbils live alone? Gerbils can live alone but you will put them through a lot of stress. Gerbils historically live in groups or colonies. So if you bring them home it is advisable to create their natural habitat for them.

So it is advisable to always get a pair as a new pet owner. You should choose a pair of the same sex.  If you want pups then you could get the opposite sexes

There are some special cases where your Gerbil will want to live alone. Here are some of them:

  • Old age
  • Dislike for other gerbils
  • Injured or sick  gerbil
  • You do not want to keep gerbils again
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