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Diarrhea in Gerbils

Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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Gerbil with Chew Toy

Your gerbil's feces should normally be firm in texture, and dark in color. A change in either texture or color - especially to a watery texture or a lighter color - usually signals a problem. Causes of diarrhea in gerbils include:

  • Stressors such as changes in temperature, lighting, or environment
  • Too many vegetables or greens in the diet
  • Tyzzer's disease, a bacterial infection caused by Clostridium piloforme
If your gerbil has diarrhea, dehydration is an immediate concern and can become serious. Try to get your gerbil to drink water. If you can trace the start of the diarrhea to a stressor such as a change in diet or new surroundings, simply remove the suspected cause and see if the diarrhea stops. Otherwise, you need to contact your veterinarian for assistance as soon as possible, but no later than within 24 hours of onset.

Your veterinarian may recommend the use an antibiotic liquid specially formulated to treat the symptoms of diarrhea in small pets. As with any medication, administer it as directed, observe your pet for improvement, and contact your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns.

If your pet's diarrhea has soiled his home, clean his cage as soon as possible to promote optimal hygiene and an environment that facilitates healing/recuperation. Cage Cleaner & Deodorizer can simplify the job and help you get your pet back into clean, familiar territory in no time.

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