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Old 03-14-2019, 03:05 AM   #1
Wollfie
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Default Gerbil wheel

Hi can someone tell me the best size wheel for Male adult gerbils please?

Cheers!
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Old 03-14-2019, 03:53 AM   #2
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

I am not sure why but I was always under the impression either that gerbils shouldn't have wheels, or that they weren't necessary. It may be one of those myths but I always thought they were prone to heart attacks running in a wheel. I do know they need very deep bedding and tunnels within the bedding. Have attached the RSPCA sheet with details of the right kind of environment for gerbils - it doesn't mention a wheel. I haven't actually seen a wheel in a gerbil set up before.

I would think the set up of the cage is more important than a wheel. ie a tank style with a good height and about 40cm deep of bedding with some large tunnels under the bedding. There's a sample photo on the link below.

https://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwe...ls/environment

Gerbil set ups I have seen have either been in a gerbilarium (a glass tank with a cage topper) - the 100cm Falco cage seemed popular for this on Zooplus. Or in something like the Living World Eco Habitat.

When we were children a friend had a gerbil who had a heart attack after running in a wheel, and when we got one we were told they run until they drop and they shouldn't have a wheel - but that was a very long time ago.
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Old 03-14-2019, 04:14 AM   #3
Wollfie
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

Yeah I have the set up all correct and the wheel thing isnít correct. They should have a wheel.

I was just wondering if an 8.5 inch is ok or a 12 inch.
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Old 03-14-2019, 04:16 AM   #4
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serendipity7000 View Post
I am not sure why but I was always under the impression either that gerbils shouldn't have wheels, or that they weren't necessary. It may be one of those myths but I always thought they were prone to heart attacks running in a wheel. I do know they need very deep bedding and tunnels within the bedding. Have attached the RSPCA sheet with details of the right kind of environment for gerbils - it doesn't mention a wheel. I haven't actually seen a wheel in a gerbil set up before.

I would think the set up of the cage is more important than a wheel. ie a tank style with a good height and about 40cm deep of bedding with some large tunnels under the bedding. There's a sample photo on the link below.

https://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwe...ls/environment

Gerbil set ups I have seen have either been in a gerbilarium (a glass tank with a cage topper) - the 100cm Falco cage seemed popular for this on Zooplus. Or in something like the Living World Eco Habitat.

When we were children a friend had a gerbil who had a heart attack after running in a wheel, and when we got one we were told they run until they drop and they shouldn't have a wheel - but that was a very long time ago.
The RSPCA are not a reliable source of information. These are the same people who say goldfish can be kept in 10 gallon tanks and say a hamster doesnít have a minimum cage size as long as the set up correct. Theyíre the last people I would get information from
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:44 AM   #5
mangoandmimi
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

I’m also pretty sure they need a wheel, 12” is best. 8.5” is more for dwarf hamsters. That’s strange serendipity most if not all of the good setups I’ve seen have had wheels in.

Last edited by mangoandmimi; 03-14-2019 at 05:54 AM.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:05 AM   #6
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

Ha ha - there you - up to date information So if a wheel is ok for them I would think an open wheel would be safest, without a spindle - as they have tails. Options would be the 28cm Trixie wood wheel (plastikoted to make it wipe clean) or the 12" comfort wheel (which could be noisy).
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:15 AM   #7
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

This is one of the gerbil set ups I've seen in the Eco Habitat - can't see a wheel but there might be one - has a lot of substrate though and buried tunnels/tubes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAi47sNFt30

Other set ups I've seen are on Zooplus - owner photos under the Falco cage photos section.

Might be an idea to ask on a gerbil forum - I had a quick look and opinions seem divided - some do, some don't.

I think the important thing is it's the right cage and the right amount of bedding to allow them normal behaviours.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:12 AM   #8
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

There's a few reasons why some people don't like wheels for gerbils. They are big chewers and so plastic wheels could be a danger, but now there are wooden wheels - Rodipet, Getzoo, Trixie, Karlie wonderland all do them. I'm not sure wooden wheels are available in the States so I can see why some people are concerned. There were also some issues with tails getting stuck but I don't think that would be a problem if you got a big enough and safe wheel that didn't come apart or anything. Gerbil enclosures are often not that big so it can be difficult fitting a big enough wheel in, so lots of people opt to leave the wheel out in favour of deeper bedding. The smaller caging is often because some people choose to house pairs/groups in smaller spaces in an attempt to reduce fighting risks. But if you have a good sized cage like you should then none of that would be an issue. Then lots of gerbils do just use the wheel less than hamsters would (and some don't use them at all), especially if the setup is enriching enough. I don't think any of the reasons are enough to just leave a wheel out tbh, the German setups pretty much all have wheels too.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:39 AM   #9
Wollfie
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

Quote:
Originally Posted by mangoandmimi View Post
There's a few reasons why some people don't like wheels for gerbils. They are big chewers and so plastic wheels could be a danger, but now there are wooden wheels - Rodipet, Getzoo, Trixie, Karlie wonderland all do them. I'm not sure wooden wheels are available in the States so I can see why some people are concerned. There were also some issues with tails getting stuck but I don't think that would be a problem if you got a big enough and safe wheel that didn't come apart or anything. Gerbil enclosures are often not that big so it can be difficult fitting a big enough wheel in, so lots of people opt to leave the wheel out in favour of deeper bedding. The smaller caging is often because some people choose to house pairs/groups in smaller spaces in an attempt to reduce fighting risks. But if you have a good sized cage like you should then none of that would be an issue. Then lots of gerbils do just use the wheel less than hamsters would (and some don't use them at all), especially if the setup is enriching enough. I don't think any of the reasons are enough to just leave a wheel out tbh, the German setups pretty much all have wheels too.
Iím not in the States. Iím in the UK. 🙂

Thanks for all your replies. Iíve got a 12Ē Trixie in there at the moment but I want to switch to a wooden one and was going to get an 8.5Ē but itíll get the 12Ē wooden one instead.

Thanks!
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:08 AM   #10
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Default Re: Gerbil wheel

Which 12" wood one is available in the states? Is that also a trixie wheel?
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