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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-20-2005, 01:28 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Share your ideas

I need housing/toys/food ideas.

for houseing all i know of is the cage/tank/plastic tank
toys i got cardboard boxes/paper/tubes/wood/wooden chopsticks(is that safe), (can i use boxes i get from the freezer like from a popsicle box? i'mm worried that they poeple who work at the groceries store touched the boxes with the same hands they used on meat, but if its been in the freezer would it be alright?)
food-got nothing
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-24-2005, 03:43 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
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For a gerbil or hamster?

Best housing for gerbils are aquariums (or sterilite bins) because cages with bars are to drafty (and make messes as gerbils kick out litter) and as gerbils chew on them it rubs the fur off their nose making it sore. Plastic cages are dangerous because if a gerbil chews and ingests the plastic, it can cause fatal blockage. Tanks and bins provide plenty of room for a gerbil to burrow in deep bedding, and are easier to clean.

Chew toys- Tree branches (maple, fruit tree, birch, beech, haze, willow NO PINE after you freeze them for 72 hours), paper towel/toilet paper rolls, cardboard boxes (ie: kleenex boxes, ramen boxes, shoe boxes, food boxes, popsicle boxes- if no chemicals and paints, removing glue), wood (nothing treated or finished), manilla folders, store sold wooden logs/treasure chests, cuttlefish bone, paper plates, computer paper
Toys- Jars (empty coffee jars, pasta sauce jars- gerbils favorites), wheel, rolling ball, large marbles, tubes
Cage decorations- Rocks, stones (after they've been cleaned), glazed figurines (nothing plastic)
Food dish- optional. keeps food together from getting lost, or gerbils can scavange for food in their litter
Houses- clay/terecotta plant pots, cardboard, store bought wooden house, hollowed out coconut shells
Levels- gerbils love levels- ramps, mazes, tunnels, bridges, stairs are all great out of cardboard, or bird toys,
Bathing- Chinchilla bath sand in a fish bowl, or small cardboard container. Place in cage for 5-10 minutes and then remove before gerbils decide to use it as a bathroom.

You can also dump lots of timothy or alfalfa hay in their tank, they'll love it especially if you mix treats (pumpkin seeds, saaflower seeds, oatmeal flakes, almonds, peanuts, walnuts, fruits, vegetables, sunflower seeds, dog buiscuits, etc) for them to forage for.

Food, you can buy a commercial brand and add fibers, dried fruits and vegetables, finch seed mixes, and more to it if you want, you can also give htem spray millet but it makes them VERY hyper. Best figures for gerbils are about 12% protein, 7% fat. Other sites say gerbils (as omnivores) need 22% protein, treats such as crickets and mealworms will always be appreciated.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-24-2005, 09:25 PM
 
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Callimico gave you a lot of great ideas... just wanted to add that you be careful with boxes from freezer food, cause they usually have a wax coating that you don't want your pet chewing on. So I'd say that you should stick to cereal boxes, Toilet paper/paper towel rolls, and such.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-24-2005, 09:55 PM
 
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good point Padfoot
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-25-2005, 06:43 AM
 
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I don't like hay or alfalfa in hamster habitats. They can possibly puncture a cheek pouch and get an infection when they pouch it.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-25-2005, 07:11 AM
 
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I think that Callimico's ideas are great I just have one question.Would the ideas work on mice as well as gerbils?

Sophie x
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-25-2005, 08:48 AM
 
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Quote:
I don't like hay or alfalfa in hamster habitats. They can possibly puncture a cheek pouch and get an infection when they pouch it.
Absolutley right- alfalfa hay can puncture a hamsters cheek pouch- I wrote all those ideas for gerbils only, I looked at one of his other posts and he has gerbils, not hamsters, but thanks for clearing that up, I wouldn't want anyone to think I was recommending alfalfa hay to hamsters.

Quote:
Would the ideas work on mice as well as gerbils?
The housing would- I know of a lot of people who use sterelite bins for their mice (lol like Padfoot) she has a great pic of her mice habitat somewhere. I think all the rest of the ideas will work to, if you hang a coconut securely mice will pile in (thanks again Padfoot). They love levels and heights to, just like gerbils, I'm not sure about the hay though, and the food won't be acccurate for a mouse's needs, but the rest should be...maybe minus the rolling ball.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-25-2005, 11:26 AM
 
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Yeah, I think most of the ideas are ok for mice too... and I think that hay is ok for mice as they don't pouch their food, plus they need a higher protein needs than gerbils. Mice need a diet similar to rats. I don't like using wood houses in my mice cages, though. They do need wood chews (sticks and such, could be replaced by doggie biscuits) to keep their teeth trimmed, but mice pee is very smelly, and wood absorbs the urine and it gets very smelly, very fast. I prefer tanks and bins for mice too, cause they can easily get out of a cage (those little things can get through anything! I saw a young one I got once get through a 1cm x 1 cm square!!! (of a wire mesh). You can cover the bars of the cage with screen mesh, though and adapt it for mice. Still, mice like to borrow and love levels. 8). I think that later tonigh I'll work on a webpage with pictures of my habitars (mice, hamsters and gerbils) and post it when I finish. 8)
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-25-2005, 08:08 PM
 
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BTW, I do not use hay or alfalfa with Syrians OR dwarfs (hamsters). The gerbs usually like it though, a lot more than mice.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-26-2005, 03:31 AM
 
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Thanks!
Spohie x
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-28-2005, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
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i gove my gerbils alphine hay...
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alfalfa hay, bird toys, cardboard box, cardboard boxes, chew toy, chew toys, dried fruit, dried fruits, pumpkin seeds, seed mix, sunflower seeds, wire mesh


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