Mice need 8" or larger wheel and/or a medium size saucer. Smaller wheels/saucers can cause spine and tail damage
Mice love to climb!
Bedding should be 2"-6" deep
Recommended substrates are Aspen, Kiln Dried Pine or Hemp. Paper bedding has been scientifically proven to not absorb the ammonia from their urine & is not recommended.
Bigger is not always better for mice! Keep in mind that mice are bottom of the food
chain prey & that fancy mice come from house mice. Where do house mice live? In walls, drawers, etc... really anyplace small enough for them to feel safe. Per scientific studies, the recommendation is 50-100 square inches per mouse. This means a 40-gallon tank needs a minimum of 7-8 mice.
Mice love clutter! The more places they have to hide, the better! Cardboard items make great cheap/free clutter items
Rodents have constantly growing teeth, make sure to provide wooden chews.
Popular enclosures are tanks, terrariums, DIY bin cages & bar cages! The "fun" cages pet stores sell are not appropriate for any small animal, these include PetSmart's Tiny Tales cages and Critter Trails.
Mice should be fed lab blocks; these contain all the needed nutrients. Seed mixes should be avoided as anything other than a treat; mice tend to only eat the "yummy" parts...which means they don't end up getting all the nutrients they need.
Mice are granivores, they do not need fruits & veggies. Fruits are high in sugar and veggies have a high-water content, which can cause diarrhea. You can give them very tiny amounts of fruits/veggies as treats if you'd like, but they do not actually need them nutritionally.
Male mice must live solo, once male mice are mature they can, and will, seriously maim & kill one another. Bucks make great pets & are little attention hogs!
Female mice must live in groups, or pairs at a bare minimum. Groups of 3 or more are highly recommended.
Gerbils are insane chewers! For this reason, they require either glass or metal cages. Tanks, terrariums & vivariums are great gerbil cage options. Bar cages only work if they have a metal base pan. Want to make a tank more fun? Add a topper!
Substrate recommendations are Aspen, Kiln Dried Pine & Hemp. Paper bedding does not absorb the ammonia from their urine, so should not be used as a primary substrate. However, since gerbils are desert critters, they do not pee as much as other rodents. For this reason, you can mix paper bedding with any of the above options!
Gerbils are borrowers! They need at least part of their enclosure to have 6" plus of bedding.
Due to being insane chewers, all enrichment items in their cage should be wood/ceramic/glass/metal...however the NiteAngel wheels are ok, they are a very hard plastic that they can't chew
Minimum wheel size for gerbils is 10", but bigger is always better!
A 20-gallon long tank is the bare minimum enclosure size for a pair of gerbils; however, it does limit how much bedding you can give them for burrowing. Our recommendation is a 40-gallon tank for 2-4 gerbils
Female gerbils should live in pairs, male gerbils can live in groups of 2-4
Declanning is when gerbils reject a bond after being bonded. It is more common in larger groups & females are more likely to declan. Warning signs are:
Blood in cage
When declanning is caught early enough, you can reintroduce them via the AGS approved split cage method. However, once blood is drawn, they can never be safely reintroduced.
All bonding of new gerbils should be done via a split cage method.
A gerbil seed mix (Higgins Sunburst)
Lab block (Mazuri Rat & Mouse, Science Select Rat & Mouse or Oxbow Essentials Adult rat are all great options!