Gerbils love to exercise. Give them a weight bench and some aerobics tights, and they’re set. But seriously, gerbils are active. They love to run around their cages and play with their toys. Providing exercise equipment and toys is a great way to keep your pet gerbil healthy and entertains you for hours.
All you need for gerbil exercise equipment is a wheel. Gerbils love wheels. Find a safe wheel that won’t harm your gerbil’s legs and tail. “I only use the mesh running wheels,” said Amanda Childress, an American Gerbil Society registered breeder and owner of Star of Texas kennel in Jacksonville, Texas, “The slat-type wheels are dangerous, as they can break a limb or tail.”
Gerbils love cardboard. They roll around their cages shredding cardboard for hours. “Most cardboard is safe, especially like cereal boxes and noodle boxes,” Childress said. Many gerbil owners give toilet paper and paper towel tubes, but not all cardboard is safe. “Do not use cardboard that has gotten wet or soiled with food,” Childress said, “Don’t use the packing cardboard embedded with the strings…they can cause a hazard for your gerbil.”
Gerbil exercise is essential to your pet’s well-being. “Without exercise, your gerbil will be facing obesity, which can lead to its own set of problems, including diabetes, heart disease, joint pain/arthritis, and even an early death,” said Childress. Respect your gerbil’s natural tendencies towards activity by providing exercise equipment and toys.