Gerbils are sociable animals, and their group sizes in the wild range from two to 15 animals of all ages and sexes. Groups are founded by a breeding pair and extended by their offspring and other relatives. For this reason, gerbils need to live with other gerbils and should never be kept on their own.
Which gerbils can be kept together?
Gerbils are happiest in same-sex pairs or small groups, with gerbils they're familiar with. Don't house adult gerbils next to one another if they don't know each other - even though they're in separate gerbilariums, they can find this stressful. Read more in our guide to housing gerbils together.
Keeping gerbils with other pets
Gerbils are prey animals and can find the presence and scent of other animals in the home stressful. If you have any other pets, make sure they can't get to your gerbils. Always keep a close eye on your gerbils if they're around another animal that may deliberately or accidentally harm or frighten them, even if you think they're good friends - particularly dogs and cats, which are natural predators.
Handling your gerbils
Although they can get used to being carefully handled, gerbils may get scared and aggressive if they feel threatened. You can reduce the stress gerbils feel when being handled by having positive interactions with them and gently getting them used to you. Read more in our guide to handling your gerbils.