3 Common Ways to Wear Down Gerbil Teeth and Claws
The 3 Most Common Ways To Wear Down A Gerbil's Teeth & Claws
Gerbil's teeth and claws are always growing and getting longer, a lot of people will just let them and will venver stop and think how this is affecting their pet, or the relationship they have with their gerbil.
While longs claws and sharp teeth can be painful to the handler of the gerbil that's not what is wrong with letting your gerbil's claws and teeth get that long. Gerbils can get sick, and even injure themselves if they have overgrown claws and or teeth, this is dangerous... this means that you NEED to keep a gerbil's teeth and claws from growing to long.
Why You Should Look Into Wearing Down Gerbil's Claws And Teeth
We all know that cutting a gerbil's claws is time consuming, can be painful to both the gerbil and the tender. Because of this we avoid this activity at all costs... on the other hand, handling gerbils becomes harder when their claws and teeth are like this, leading to improper care.
What a lot of people don't know is that there is easier ways to clip a gerbil's claws and wear down their teeth. The answer to this is almost so simple that I've seen many people do the "duh" reaction once they found out. :)
1. Nail Clippers For Gerbils
1. Nail Clippers for small animals:
While these are probably the most difficult option for clipping a gerbil's claws most people choose them. There are different kinds of nail clippers, the ones made for cats and small dogs will not work for your gerbils, another thing people try to do is use human nail clippers, which also is not a good idea. The nail clippers you want are the ones that are labeled as Nail Clippers For Small Animals or For Rodents.
There are also some brands that clip like normal clippers or there are better brands that actually wear down the nails instead of clipping them and causing damage or pain to the gerbil/animal. If you are going to use nail clippers I suggest using the ones that wear away the gerbil's claws instead of clipping them.
2. Sandpaper Floors
2. Putting Down Sand Paper and or other substances that wear away things on the shelves and bottom of the gerbil's cage. Doing this will force the gerbils to walk across it, resulting in the gerbil's claws wearing down. While this is a wonderful way to keep the gerbil's claws shorter, it has some draw backs such as: The sand paper would need to be changed once a week along with the rest of the cage. That in it's self can get expensive quickly and also difficult.
Another thing is that a lot of gerbils will go under the sandpaper if it's not weighted down in some way. Also it get uncomfortable to walk on ALL the time, how would you like that? This is why the entire cage should not be filled with sand paper like I have seen so many times before.
3. Wood Blocks
3. One of the next things people do, is to put in a brick or wood block the gerbil's can climb over and gnaw on, this way the block of wood or brick will wear down both claws and teeth. This is an ok way of helping to wear down the claws and teeth but one of the draw backs is that some gerbils will avoid these blacks and chew toys... actually will never touching them.
What I Recommend
Here's what I recommend, it has worked best for me to have a little bit of sand paper on part of the cage, and then putting in chew toys, and blocks of wood, and or a brick... also personally my gerbils like to chew on sticks from outside.
As long as you make sure that you avoid apple branches and pine branches and that the branches you bring in for the gerbils have been washed with clean water, dried and frozen in the freezer overnight to kill any bugs or bug eggs that may be in or on the branch... you're all good!
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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.